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Notching up the intervals

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Saturday morning, and the bad foot felt pretty good. Tuesday and Thursday I had done 10 cycles of walk 1, run 2; today I set out to do 8 cycles of walk 1, run 3.

I looked at the thermometer - 34F (1C). Good running weather, but I wasn't so sure about walk/run intervals. So I dithered and did other things till the temperature rose to 40F (4C). Then I dressed like I would for 32F and set out to do my intervals.

The initial walking warmup was chilly. It was so chilly, I did a light run for the last 100 meters or so of the warmup. Then the walking interval was cold. I didn't really warm up to the exercise until the 3rd or 4th cycle.

If I'm still doing intervals when the weather gets cold, I may have to change from walk/run to run/walk, so I can start with warming myself up.

I noticed that the running intervals were longer than I've been doing. I could do them, but I knew I was going further. This wasn't as bad as last year, the first time through 5K training; I expect that by the third time I'm doing walk 1, run 3, I'll be ready to keep running beyond 3 minutes.

Other than that, the intervals went well. I landed on a nice mix of running up hills, down hills, and on level ground. I was able to run all the way up one of the hills that was too long for a 2 minute running interval. I think I was running a little slower than I did on the shorter intervals, but that's okay. The idea is to build strength and stamina in the foot, not to set speed records.

I adjusted my route to be just a bit longer, and it worked out well. Today's route mapped out to 4.25 miles in 32:56, so I actually got home just before the 9th running interval would have started. That works out to an average pace of 7:45 per mile, which is right around what my pace was the first time I ran 35 minutes continually.

Progress is slow, but there is progress. I think I *could* run a 5K in two weeks, but I *shouldn't*. Not signing up for that one is looking like a very good decision.

Now comes the interesting part of the rehab/training. The time I'm spending is as much as fits in the lunch hour when I work at home, and anything longer will be a weekend only workout. It remains to be seen whether I can work up to running a 10K by Thanksgiving Day. I'm pretty sure I'll be able to do a 10K in run/walk intervals, but I'm less certain that I'll be able to convince myself to stick with intervals in an organized race.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RG_DFW 10/14/2012 5:13PM

    Stay smart with it and good luck!

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MAGGIE101857 10/14/2012 11:15AM

    You are one smart emoticon !!!! emoticon

It's hard to hold back during recovery, especially when you are feeling stronger! Proud of you for doing the right thing! emoticon

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-SHOREIDO- 10/14/2012 8:31AM

    Sounds like you've got a handle on things. A real thinker!! This is only my 3rd 5K and the first one I'm trying in the cool weather so I have lots to learn.
Have a great Sunday!! : )

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ONEKIDSMOM 10/14/2012 6:55AM

    Good job with the patience, brother. I have similar issues with run/walk/run... once I warm up, the runs tend to be longer and longer, and eventually there are "water station walks only". But recovery from injury... as you have discovered... is a whole nother ball game.

Good luck and go get 'em!

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GREENGENES 10/14/2012 12:34AM

    Sounds like good progress to me. I thought I had been doing pretty will with my times but your run/walk intervals are faster than my run time. Way to go!

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HANSBRINK 10/13/2012 10:02PM

  Congrats on what seems to be a successful day of running. 34 degrees good running weather? Its been a long time for me when its gotten that cold. Glad you enjoyed your run and your day.

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Tuesday intervals

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Tuesday is a work from home day, which means I can run at lunch more easily than when I'm in the office. I had skipped Saturday's intervals to give the bad foot time to rest up, and today was time to be back on schedule.

It was a nice autumn day, with frost overnight but sunshine and 55 F temperature at noon. This is perfect running weather according the SparkPeople.

Because I had to give the foot an extended rest, I didn't stretch the intervals. Kept them at walk 1, run 2 for 10 cycles, on the same route as I had done the last two times. I did give in to Mr. Testosterone just a little, running the rest of the way home after walking for one minute the 11th time; but I knew when I started that the 11th run would be under a minute.

Distance mapped out to 3.99 miles in 31:41, for a pace of 7:56 per mile. Hm. I didn't break an 8 minute mile the first time training till I was running continually. IIRC, I was around 8:05 on the walk 1, run 4 intervals last year.

I wasn't paying attention to the bad foot after the run, so I didn't notice how it reacted to being barefoot while I got to the shower. It didn't grumble loud enough to compel my attention, and that's a Good Thing. I'll see how it is for the rest of the week, then decide whether to hold the intervals the same or go to walk 1, run 3.

I'm thinking that passing on the 5K on the 28th was the right decision. If I were committed to that, I'd be counting weeks and figuring out how to train to run a 5K all the way in two and a half weeks; but it's better for me to take it slow.

Next organized race is on Thanksgiving Day, a 10K. That's an ambitious distance for where my foot is now, and I keep reminding myself that it will be okay to run intervals in an organized race. We'll see how well I listen when we get that far. Maybe I'll need to skip my Tuesday intervals or run that week, to rest the foot for a major effort. Have to think about things like this in advance, in order to keep Mr. Testosterone under control.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NWFL59 10/9/2012 8:55PM


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    That is awesome! Glad your foot is better. emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 10/9/2012 7:38PM

    Love the expression, "testosterone poisoning": pretty much always self-inflicted too!! But: you've got it all under control. Self-awareness is all!!

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ONEKIDSMOM 10/9/2012 7:04PM

    Way to take charge. Mind over hormones, huh? emoticon

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One Year of Maintenance

Sunday, October 07, 2012

On October 7, 2011, I weighed 174.0 lbs. This beat my goal weight of 175, and I declared myself to be in maintenance. My immediate concern was to figure out how much to eat to maintain my weight instead of losing or gaining. I wasn't terribly worried about losing a few pounds while learning this, because I'd weighed as little as 165 as a young adult.

It took a few weeks to learn how to not lose, but I got it done. Here's what my weight has done in my first year of maintenance:

Yes, I was losing weight for the first half of this year of maintenance. But I wasn't losing weight like I did in the weight loss phase. It will be pretty obvious when I found SparkPeople from the weight graph of 1/1/2011 to present:

I spent much of the past year feeling my way to where I ought to maintain my weight. Along about January, I thought I'd stopped losing near the first of December, at the 165 lb. mark. It turned out I was still losing slowly, and today I'm comfortable in the 160-163 range. I'm calling 162 my goal weight now, but I'm not sure that will last long term.

In any event, I'm happy with the last half year or so of having a clear sideways trend of weight management. The journey with fitness has had its ups and downs, and it was a bit of a surprise that I was able to adjust what I eat well enough to maintain my weight in spite of the changing amounts of exercise I was able to do.

On the At Goal & Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance Team, the oft-quoted statistics are as follows:

- The likelihood of regaining weight when you reach goal is 80% - 95%.
- When you've maintained for 2 years the likelihood of regain drops to 50%.
- When you've maintained for 5 years the likelihood of regain drops to 27%!

From a statistical standpoint, I'm still at risk of regaining. But I don't believe statistics are the best way to look at individual cases. I'm a bigger fan of BREWMASTERBILL's concept of keeping your head in the game:

My head's been in the game for the past year+. It's an open question whether I'll keep my head in the game long term, but it looks good for the immediate future.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SWEDE_SU 10/7/2012 4:38PM

    emoticon on one year of maintaining!

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JAZZEJR 10/7/2012 4:28PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon Wow, MobyCarp! I'm so proud proud of your consistency. Keep up the good work--you're my role model!

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MJREIMERS 10/7/2012 4:10PM

    emoticon on your emoticon anniversary! Keep doing what you are doing and you will maintain!!! emoticon

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    Way to go on the maintenance! Congratulations!

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ARCHIMEDESII 10/7/2012 3:39PM

    Happy Anniversary !!

You are now eligible to join the National Weight Control Registry. This is a national study being done on people who've lost the weight and have kept it off for at least one year. The goal of the study is to find out what these people do to maintain their loss.

Here are some statistics you'll enjoy. Of the people who are registered, they noticed the following.

78% eat breakfast every day.
75% weigh themselves at least once a week.
62% watch less than 10 hours of TV per week.
90% exercise, on average, about 1 hour per day.

emoticon emoticon emoticon


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DESIDERATA~GIRL 10/7/2012 2:26PM

    Well done on your work! You have obviously worked very hard and it shows!!

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HAKAPES 10/7/2012 2:16PM

    That's the attitude that makes me come back to here at SP!
I loved your graph!
Let's rock this "maintenance"!

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DEBRITA01 10/7/2012 12:31PM

    emoticon on your one-year maintenance anniversary! emoticon

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MIDROAD 10/7/2012 12:06PM

    That is so wonderful and very heartening for someone like myself to hear.

Thanks for sharing!


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KRISZTA11 10/7/2012 10:43AM

    emoticon to your first Maintenance Anniversary!

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CELIAMINER 10/7/2012 10:27AM

    Congrats on a year of maintaining!

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GREENGENES 10/7/2012 10:23AM

    That is awesome. Congratulations! Thanks for pointing out Brewmasterbill's blog. That was excellent advice.

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WILLOWBROOK5 10/7/2012 10:02AM

    Happy One Year Anniversary and hearty congratulations!

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62NVON 10/7/2012 9:45AM

    I love your approach to maintenance! And I agree with ONEKIDSMOM too. I've lost focus and motivation over and over, but never again! I'm approaching a milestone birthday later this year, and I want to go into my 50's as healthy as I possibly can!

Congrats, MOBYCARP... many happy returns!

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KANOE10 10/7/2012 9:00AM

    Congratulations on your first year of maintenance. That is a wonderful accomplishment. You are heading to a second healthy year. I also lost and changed my goal during my year of maintenance.

emoticon emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 10/7/2012 8:45AM

    I love BREWMASTERBILL's concept of head in the game, too. Every time I have regained, it has been not because I don't know how to keep it off or even in some instances want to keep it off... but because I lose focus, and eventually lose motivation, and start telling myself either "I don't care," or "I'll get back to you later".

Truth is, it's later NOW! There isn't a whole lot of "later" left once you get to the big 6-0, which is now looming for me. OK, maybe 30, 40 years... but by 60, we know that's not very long! And if we *don't* pay attention to our health... it might be less than that 30 or 40, by a significant amount.

Congrats on your first year of maintaining! emoticon And cheers to keeping our heads in the game! emoticon

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No intervals on Saturday

Saturday, October 06, 2012

I was going to do walk/run intervals today. The plan was to do 10 cycles of walk 1, run 2, which would be a repeat of Tuesday and Thursday. It didn't happen.

I woke up to raindrops on the roof. The rain stopped before full daylight, but the temperature remained very autumnal. It was a much better day for running than for walking, so I was glad it was an interval day instead of a walking day. But the bad foot grumbled noticeably during my light jogging up and down the hallway while fixing breakfast.

I debated. I wanted to do those intervals, and I believe I could have done them. But the foot is clearly a little worse than it was at the start of the week. I ended up deciding it was time to give the foot another day of rest. I'll see how it is tomorrow, and either do the intervals tomorrow or just skip today entirely and start again on Tuesday.

Other than the mild disappointment of missing what passes for a run these days, it was a pretty good Saturday. I didn't accomplish much, but I didn't feel pressured either. I reflected that it's a good thing I bagged the 5K on the 28th; it's a lot easier to take an extra day off for the foot if I don't have a commitment to run in three weeks.

It's okay if it takes me into November, or even into December, to get to where I can run continually. The point is to get there, not to take a run at it (pun intended) and come up lame.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NWFL59 10/7/2012 8:24AM

    Glad you had a stress free day. emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 10/7/2012 6:23AM

    Those debates and finding the balance... doing a bit of that here, too. Glad you had the chance to give it a rest. Good luck and listen to it, today.

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GREENGENES 10/6/2012 10:25PM

    Do you think some of the foot issue today might be weather related? I don't know what your injury was but I remember when I broke my arm several years ago I often felt a significant ache on rainy days which lasted for quite a while.

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Sometimes, you just have to stop and wonder

Friday, October 05, 2012

Some people are naturally sympathetic, empathetic, caring, social . . . I'm not sure what adjectives I'm looking for here. The kind of person I'm thinking of has lots of friends, and their friends are comfortable sharing important parts of their personal lives.

I'm not that kind of person. I'm an introvert, and it shows to other people. I have to work at being supportive of other people. Folks that I don't know very well just don't walk up to me and tel me their problems. Usually.

Today I chance-met a fellow employee in the hallway. She is someone I've worked with a little. We respect each other professionally, but have no personal social life in common. Probably the deepest non-work conversation we've had was when she noticed I'd lost weight and asked how, and I pointed her at SparkPeople. I forgot to tell her my user name, and I don't know what hers is.

Today she just blurted out that she has diabetes. She doesn't look like the type to get diabetes, but you know there isn't a specific look. She has lost some weight, her doctor wants her to lose more. She has been terribly out of shape, to the point where she couldn't walk up a flight of stairs without breathing heavily; she's better now.

And she's totally scared of the diabetes. Doesn't know what to do. For whatever reason, she saw my loss of weight as an indication that I could tell her something about what to do. So I did my best. Reassured her that diabetes can be managed. That she can learn to do what she needs to do, and it will just become part of her.

I told her about changing your lifestyle to be healthier, and how it can't be done all at once. I told her about eating more fresh produce, and how learning to do that was a gradual process for me. And I told her not to be overwhelmed with all the changes she should make, just pick one that is possible and do that one. Then when that has been accomplished, pick another one. And so on.

And yes, I remembered to warn her that I don't know very much specifically about diabetes. I tried to make my pep talk more about motivation, drawing heavily on things I've learned on SparkPeople.

Out of the blue, she wanted a hug. (People don't look to me for hugs. It. Just. Doesn't. Happen.) Said she'd be back to talk to me more later. She wasn't back today, and might not be; but I won't be surprised if she is.

So this evening, I'm stopping and wondering. What is it that made me someone to turn to? Did I say enough of the right things, and say them in the right way to help her? How would I cope if *I* were the one getting a diagnosis of diabetes?

It's episodes like this that take my mind off my small problems like rehabbing an injured foot. Worse things can happen in life than have happened to me, and today I got a glimpse at one of them.

Tomorrow I'll go out and do more walk/run intervals, working toward being able to run a 10K on Thanksgiving Day. I'll likely spend most of the day concerned with the issues of living my own life. But tonight, I stop and wonder what it would be like to live with someone else's problems instead of my own.

And I wonder, what did she see in me that I don't see in myself, that she would turn to me for support?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JAZZEJR 10/7/2012 4:30PM

    So just tell her about the next time you talk to her. They have a special plan for diabetics if she indicates that in her profile.

Comment edited on: 10/7/2012 4:31:06 PM

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NWFL59 10/6/2012 1:55PM

    So glad to read you were there for your co-worker when she turned to you for support. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STRIVERONE 10/6/2012 1:01PM

    Whatever caused her to come to you, the world is a slightly better place because you gave another human being support when she needed it.

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RG_DFW 10/6/2012 10:57AM

    Everybody wants to talk to those who are successful at some particular endeavor. She saw your changes and hopes that some of your success will rub off on her. Perhaps it will

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PLMITCH 10/6/2012 9:22AM

    My guess is that she saw you had taken control of your life and figured you would be the ideal support system for her efforts. I bet she'll be back to talk to you more. I guess she might also have a crush on you, too (oh gosh, how "high school-ish"!).

Just when you think you have it all figured out....


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KRISZTA11 10/6/2012 8:06AM

    Well you were nice and supportive to her and showed that you cared about her and her well being.
That is something hard for introvert persons (I know because I'm one too).
We tend to better in situations that focus on tasks and problems, and less well in unstructured social situations like parties (which seem to be enjoyable for extrovert folks for reasons unknown to me).
; )

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DEBRITA01 10/6/2012 6:43AM

    My guess is she sensed you were a caring and empathetic person who could be a sounding board and possibly give her some reassurance (even if you have limited knowledge of the subject). Sometimes people see things in us that we don't see in ourselves. Sounds like you both got something from the conversation... emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 10/6/2012 5:09AM

    I cannot begin to fathom "why you, why now, why for this woman" but I do know and you do, too, that we have things to do on this planet, a "mission" if you will. Sounds like a higher power at work, to me, and you are a tool in His hands. She was led to you, at that time.

And you, perhaps, were led to her... to learn of something in yourself you never thought you had... but some of us who know you best... know is there! You have a kindness about you, a maturity, and many people find that calm exterior comforting.


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WINDSWEPTACRES 10/5/2012 11:30PM

    Best guess, and it's only a guess, is that she's seeing positive changes in you and thought you might be able to help her. A diagnosis of diabetes can knock you on your butt, especially since it's often implied that it's something you 'did to yourself.'

You might mention to her that SparkPeople has some great teams for dealing with diabetes, from teams for those newly diagnosed to teams for old-timers who have been dealing with the disease for years.

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DIET_FRIEND 10/5/2012 11:05PM

    It might have been unfamiliar being turned to by a co-worker in her time of trial, but I bet it gave you a good feeling giving someone reasurance. I'm glad you were there for her.

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