Friday, July 24, 2009
Now I get it, I never did before, but now I get why people try to copy the effect of endorphins with various chemical, drugs and foods. Endorphins rock. I've heard that chocolate releases a chemical in the body that has a similar effect...I don't get it. Chocolate might make give some feeling of comfort or well being. Endorphins do so much more! I have finally discovered, to some degree, what is meant by a "runner's high" and I barely run-LOL. Today's run was magnificent. I felt, at first, that I was going too slow, not doing enough, and increased my pace a bit. After our first 3 minute run I could see that I was a little farther along than last time. During the second, and final, 3 minute run Robert whispered in my ear that I had 1 minute left right when I reached the spot that was the end of my last run on Wednesday! I was a full minute ahead at that point! Finished the run and walked the rest of the way back trying to keep a decent pace. Got back and the final time was 2 minutes better than last time!!! WooHoo! Its working!! I am already looking for the next 5K I am going to do. There is an organization in the U.S., I am pretty sure they are everywhere, called NAMI-the National Alliance for Mental Illness. Every year, all over the country, they sponsor 5K awareness walks. I used to work as a Secretary in a Mental Health Hospital Unit so as a department we would participate in these walks. I was always among the last to get back. I am thinking about doing the walk in our area this year and not being one of the last ones back! It is going to be a great Friday! Still have aerobics in about an hour. It will be easier today! Today's instructor is very laid back and just does the basics, no boot camp today, thinking about it though I think I am a little sad about that. One sparkfriend noted once that I enjoy challenges and its true, nothing gets me going faster than a challenge. Never would have started running if Disneyland hadn't put that 45 minute limit on getting a medal. Now I've taken a peek into a whole new world FULL of challenges just waiting to be met and yesterday's class was a full blown challenge. Today won't be as challenging and I might just get a little bored, oh well, I already met the challenge this morning and triumphed!! Getting faster...
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Went for the walk this morning since it is our day off from running the catch being that today we increased our distance!! We did a little backtracking and looping back around where we had already gone and went from about 2.1 miles to about 2.8 miles or so...the new route hasn't been tracked and for both my sister and I our pedometers measure a little bit shy of our actual distance, we'll have a more acurate distance later. It took us 51 minutes, I know we will be faster next time. We hit over 6000 steps on the walk alone though so that is great!! I came home and got a little more sleep then went to cardio class. Today was "cardio boot camp". Oh my goodness!!!! Could I have gotten a better workout, short of running 3 miles??? I don't think so. I love this instructor, she is AWESOME, kept me moving for sure. The most amazing thing about today??? The class instructor had us run 3 laps around the gym (basically a standard size basketball court) and I ran the whole time, no brisk walk for this chicky, no, no, no. I ran and I ran well!!! My friend Chrystal started out walking and then caught up and said "my inspiration" -who me?? Yep!! Pat myself on the back-I got somebody moving!! She paced with me the entire 3 laps-and you know what else-I think I could have gone another lap, maybe even two if I really wanted to before I would have to stop and walk. Truly, truly amazing!! AND, the 3 laps were the EASY part of the workout-LOL!! I am sweaty, stinky and tired and it feels good. I checked my pedometer and I have already surpassed 10,000 steps for the day-with more than 9000 of those being aerobic steps-meaning I was moving consistently at a rate likely to raise my heart rate for more than 9000 steps-AMAZING!! Today was a weigh in for a challenge and the scale still hasn't budged, but I know with this increased activity it is only a matter of time. I haven't been tracking my food properly but, I am fairly certain that if there is a caloric problem it is that I haven't been eating enough. Despite a challenge to eat a healthy breakfast I've been stumbling on the breakfast area lately and horribly, quite often on the lunch area too. Not eating a meal, just grabbing a quick snack or a bite or two of whatever I've fed my children. Bad, bad, plan. Time to get back on track with the food. Luckily tomorrow is shopping day and I can stock up on some good goodies to inspire me to eat better again. I might even take advantage of the 24-hour Wal-Mart and do at least a little shopping right after my run tomorrow. At 5:00 in the morning nobody cares if you are walking through the Wal-Mart all sweaty. At least you are a customer in actual clothes, not pajamas (sad, but true). Okay, time to go get cleaned up a little, still have library time today, maybe I can convince my kids to take the stairs today!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Could not wake up this morning!! Finally did though and got started on Week 3 Day 2 of Couch to 5K, my warm up was a little on the slow side, the body really did not want to start moving, but once it did my body and I were okay. Day 2 of the C25K has us running 90 seconds then a 90 second recovery, then 3 minutes of running. I think (but am not positive) that I was just a tiny bit faster in my running today. Despite the slower warm up I finished my runs in just about the same place I did last time-so it seems I made up some time in there somewhere, although it didn't need to be much time. The warm up was not THAT slow!! Once the runs are over we still have a distance to walk before getting home. Today I continued to push through that walk. Working hard to keep my stride long and loose and as fast as I could go without running. And lo, and behold, at the end of the whole thing today was 1 minute faster than Monday!! Only 1 minute, but overall I am now 5 minutes faster than my absolute slowest time and I thought I was going to die at the end of that workout. It is still easy to get discouraged when I am "running" and really don't feel like I am getting anywhere at all, but my inner athlete is still there telling me to keep going, that only by keeping at it will it get better. I won't make any progress if I stop. I used an analogy once that has probably stuck with me more than it has with anyone I've ever told it to. Life is like an escalator going the wrong direction-you want to go up, but the escalator is going down. The only way you are ever going to make it to the top is if you keep trying. The second you stop trying, not only are you no longer making progress, but you are now going in reverse . Sometimes you might need to move a little slower and you might only be keeping pace with the movement of the escalator, but you are still trying and at least not going backwards. Sometimes you find yourself moving faster and making more progress than you would have ever expected. The thing that matters most is that you never, never stop trying. So today, I went just a tiny bit faster than the escalator and moved just a tiny bit faster than I had been. On Friday, the day of our next run, I hope that I can still be just a tiny bit faster than the escalator!!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Today I went splat. Nothing new, happens fairly often as a matter of fact. We were walking (day off from running) and my toe caught a raised chunck of sidewalk. Luckily, I went down, mostly, on grass. The knee that did hit sidewalk was just a little bit sore for a few minutes and then I got into the walk and forgot about it. Glad there was no real damage done, just to my ego! But, hey, I've mentioned before, I'm a klutz first class so my ego has gotten pretty tough over the years. It's going to be another one of those try to stay cool days. Glad I already got the exercise out of the way. One of our local movie theaters has free movies during the summer-all old releases that are family oriented. I think we'll do that today and sit in a nice cool theater for a little while. It is a little past 6:30 and the girls are outside riding bikes already, it is the only time when it is cool enough to enjoy riding a bike. Later it will just be too hot. I am looking forward to our run tomorrow. Everyone have a great day and stay cool.
Monday, July 20, 2009
For years, maybe even my whole life, there has been an athlete trying to fight her way out. When I was young she liked to play softball. For the past 15 years she has induced a compulsion to buy and read fitness mags like Shape, Self, Fitness and Women's Health. Lots of times she even tore out articles and plans that looked like they might be fun to try...someday. Someday would even come every once in awhile, but then a pregnancy would take over along with postpartum laziness. Since March though that inner athlete has been getting stronger and stronger. She pushes her way to the front more and more often. I heard her loud and clear during today's C25K run. We started week three this morning and I wasn't looking forward to it much. I made a huge mistake on Saturday. I looked at the running plan for this week. When I saw the words "run for 3 minutes" I nearly died. 3 minutes!!! What are they thinking, I've only run in 90 second intervals so far and they want me to DOUBLE that!!!???? So, this morning we do our brisk warm-up walk, we run for 90 seconds, we recover for 90 seconds and then Robert says to start running again and I jog, slow and steady, probably not even half way into the run my brain is saying "STOP, STOP, STOP, what are you doing??" And then the inner athlete pipes up-"keep going, it is not about speed it is about endurance, keep going, keep going" and I did-I made it through that run and I even had energy left over for a victory dance a la Rocky. Jumping in the air and pumping my fists. I kept going and I made it through the next 90 second run and the next 3 minute run-which also earned another Rocky style dance. I was slow, no doubt about it, our time today was the same as any run, so running more did not make me faster, not today. But, like my inner athlete said, right now it is about endurance and I endured!! And the amount of time spent running was, overall, the exact same as last week's runs. 9 minutes accumulated running time. So my recoveries must be improving or I would have needed more time to get over the longer runs. I still have plenty of time to get faster. As long as my endurance is increasing I will eventually get faster. So glad I have an inner athlete to help me along!! She is really a pretty good coach and I am going to try to listen to her a little more often. Can't wait for Wednesday's run!! Now that I know I can do it I want to do it just a little better. Before I go, gotta tell you a story from yesterday. The whole family is in the car on the way to church when we stop at a stop sign right next to a bike rider-male, couldn't see his face, but what I got a great look at was his calves!! All of a sudden I am squealing like a little girl "Honey did you see his calves?" Hubby "uh-no" Me " I want the girl version of those calves, his calves are awesome!! I want those calves in the girly style". Hubby looks at me like I've gone bananas! This guy had the most awesome calves I've ever seen!! Sculpted, rock hard, and because it is summertime in Southern California, tan and glistening (8:30 in the morning and it is already creeping past the mid and into the upper 80's to ultimately reach around 105). I spent the rest of church looking at people's calves-shame on me I know. The women with the best calves, all wearing cute strappy summery heels or sandals by the way, are known runners!! Good reason to keep running-cute sculpted calves!! My inner athlete really wants to be able to show of her calves which are currently buried under mine!!
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