Guess I should update on c25k. The pain in my knees just kept getting worse, so I decided to take a couple of weeks off running to see if that would help, especially since the weather was getting cold. In the meantime, I hired a friend who is a personal trainer to help me develop a program to help me learn to do a chin up and develop some overall strength. I mentioned my problems with running, and she set out to fix the problem with my IT band. So since about November I’ve been working with Lisa to lift more. It turned out that the problem with my IT band was weak hip flexors, and she has been able to strengthen those significantly. Yesterday I did 1 minute run/walk splits for 20 minutes during the cardio part of my routine with no problems. I’ve not run outside on the track yet, but I’m hopeful that I will be able to do that on the days I’m not lifting at the gym.
Seriously — why did I ever stop lifting? I just love it so much. And having a routine to work from makes it so much more fun. Both kids signed up with Lisa in December, and it’s been really fun to lift with them (barring sickness). It’s been especially fun to shame my teenage son since I can out bench him. I outran him during our first fitness test and gloated for weeks! I don’t think that will ever happen again in my lifetime :-)
The exercise has been really helpful lately, especially since my stress level has been pretty much off the charts. I’ll have to write about it sometime before I forget it all, but wow. You wouldn’t believe it if I told you.
Despite advice to the contrary , I went ahead and ran without a rest day today. I feel okay, and I plan to run tomorrow night as well in order to get my three runs in for the week. I don’t want to fall behind!
Today’s run was fine. I didn’t make it all the way through the last 3 minute run, sadly. It was kind of lame because I stopped just 7 seconds shy of the 3 minute mark. I wish the app counted down some way to let you know how much time you have — I’ve had so many technical snafus that I don’t trust it to alert me when to stop, so I try to count it off myself or go by distance. I stayed on track for the run, and by my estimates I was about 2 minutes ahead of yesterday’s pace. I was about 1 minute behind my normal spot on the track when I got to the “1 minute left” warning, and since this run is only 28 minutes instead of 31, that puts me 2 minutes ahead. Yay!
Today I managed to take a selfie before I ran! I’m looking a little grim — probably because it’s before 8am! I’m glad I went out early though. Today it’s supposed to be 97 degrees with a head index of 103. Yipe!
I haven’t been experiencing any knee pain since I started running on the balls of my feet, but I have been feeling pain in the bottom of my right foot. I did some research, and it turns out that my right foot overpronates. I put on my old running shoes that are supposed to correct for that as it turned out, but my left knee started hurting. I think I will stick with the Kinvaras since the pain in my foot is nowhere near as intense as what happens in my knees with the stiffer shoes. If I keep having the pain I may buy an insert for that shoe to see if it helps, but I think a different pair of shoes is unnecessary.
I got up early and did my run today before taking the kids and friends to Kings Dominion. This time no technical difficulties.
My calves were a little bit sore, but I had no joint pain. I tied my shoelaces the way the guy at Virginia Runner showed me, and my right foot did feel more stable. That foot feels vaguely wobbly to me somehow…..
Everything went well. My running distance tracker said I only ran 2.02 miles. Annoying. I hope that the track isn’t shorter than the sign says, because if so my times are very very slow.
Today I went for my run but again had technical difficulties. I got the app set on the wrong day — twice — and ended up running way more than needed. I did over 4 minutes the first go until I realized I was on the 20 minute (!) day in week 5. Then when I reset I was on week 3 day 1. Turns out I’m not ready for 3 minute jogs yet. And my little fanny pack thing is stretchy and really hard to get my phone in and out of. I can’t decide if I like it or not.
The errors are my fault because I had been reading up on the days and looking ahead, but arg. I had such goals!
Anyway, there were was nobody on the track today except me at noon. Nice.
Again forgot my selfie, so here’s a picture of my shoes. Aren’t they pretty? When it comes to sneakers I just buy whatever color is cheapest in my size, but these happen to be really nice. I went with the Saucony Kinvaras because Saucony is the brand the running store fitted me with years ago and the Kinvara is popular.
I figure I ran about 10 minutes all told today. Still did the 2 1/4 miles, but I was disappointed in that because I was really hoping to get a little farther on the track. Maybe Friday, but I’ll have to go early….
Yeah, yeah, I know. It’s technically week two but I’m still on week 1. That’s what happens when you start on Wednesday. Hate on.
I am thrilled to report that I had almost 0 pain after Saturday’s run! I wasn’t stiff, no sore ligaments in my knees, and even the owies on my Achilles’ tendon eased up. So, yep, form is key.
I did the run/walk today, but somehow the app locked itself and I didn’t manage to actually start it until I had walked over half a mile. Then once I did start it I somehow started week 5, and my first run segment ended up being at least twice as long as necessary. So then I restarted again and figured out how to fast forward on the right day to get the sets mostly back on track. I was under a time constraint because I had gotten to the track at 4 but the band family picnic was at 5, so really it was a mess. I feel comfortable with what I did — it just wasn’t exactly what the app suggested.
Today the track was filled with high school aged kids — probably 60 of them — all practicing for some kind of sport. I have to admit it was kind of intimidating. Plus two random dudes tried to talk to me. And did I mention it was HOT? I think I will avoid the park at 4pm from now on.
And sorry no picture — I was too busy racing home to change for the picnic. Hopefully next time.
Anyway, 2 1/4 miles again in I-have-no-idea-how-much time. I ran pretty hard the last two sixties, and so I was puffing by time it was over. My face was still red an hour and a half later at the picnic and a friend mentioned it. I was too embarrassed to tell him what I was doing (he’s military), so I just said I get red when I’m hot, which is of course true.
So I felt a little bit stupid today, but overall good because I ran successfully again. By the end of this week I will know if I can hold up with this injury-wise, but I’m pretty confident I can complete the program!
Not gonna lie — after the last run I thought I might not make it. I was so sore Wednesday and Thursday nights I actually had trouble sleeping. I had been so excited! Friday was my scheduled run day but I was still sore and decided to put off the run until today.
I mentioned that I had never run before and that I knew my form was bad, so I did several hours of research on how to improve. The main thing I learned was to run on the balls of your feet with feet under the body. Apparently if you hit the ground with your heel first it actually interferes with your momentum and caused injuries. One guy said it should feel like you’re pawing the ground like an animal. That was probably the best advice.
The number two thing I learned was to start slowly to conserve energy for the last leg, which is hopefully a sprint to the finish.
The number three thing I learned is that my old shoes were worn out and I needed new ones. I ended up getting a pair of Saucony Kinvaras.
With these tools in hand, I went back to the park and ran. Within a few strides I realized that although I thought I was already running on the balls of my feet I was not! I lifted my heels slightly and — poof — instant relief! I couldn’t believe the difference! I actually felt like I was flying or floating. It was actually kind of FUN! I worked hard to jog at the beginning, and for the last 60 second spurt I actually had the energy to really run. In fact, I actually ran 45 seconds extra!!! Last time I ran I was dying by the end. This time I could have pushed even farther!
I did have that mid-point struggle again on rep 4, but it wasn’t as difficult this time and I did all 60 seconds.
And I traveled very slightly farther this time in the 30 minutes, but it ended up being a run/walk of 2 1/4 miles again.
So after being disappointed that I was so hurt after the first run, I am hopeful again. It will depend on how sore I am tomorrow, but I’m feeling confident again.
The picture is of me after the run and after I changed clothes to run errands. I always turn freaky shades of red when I exercise. Not cute. But I did it!
Back in October (when my 40th birthday was pending) I finally decided to get serious about getting in shape. I signed up for Weight Watchers because of their FitPoints program, which I thought would help me get motivated to exercise regularly. Well, WW users know that in December they scrapped FitPoint for some other dumb thing that leaves you with no “reward” for exercising. I was cranky. Very. Cranky. Plus I had just gotten used to WW itself and it was working! Why did they have to go and change it (penalizing chocolate so badly)???
My goal was to stick with WW until April, knowing the exercise would not be a part of the program, so even though I was angry about the new program, I stuck it out. I’m glad I did. I hit my goal weight in March just before our trip to Europe, and I’ve stayed there or close so far. I’m now lifetime, and I still go to meetings, but I only weigh in the first week of each month. Jared is doing WW now, too, and he’s within 6lbs of his goal weight.
Anyway, after the WW activity thing was a bust, I knew that I still needed to work on my body. I was the right weight but in very bad shape. I figure I’ve got at least another 40 years on this body so I better get it in to shape! After some research and decided to try the new HICT workouts before I signed up for another gym membership that I don’t use. I ended up starting with Carrot’s Seven minute workout — HILARIOUS!!!!! — and ended up with Seven by Perigee. I love the zen master voice! I’ve done that 7 minute HICT workout 2-3x week since May now. It took me a while, but I’m now up to 3 circuits. I’ve not done 3 circuits 3x in one week yet, but I hope to next week.
For the record, Seven has changed the way my body looks significantly already. My legs are more cut, I’ve sprouted some abs, my triceps look awesome, and my butt has lifted noticeably. Al my major muscles are firmer. I’m pleased with those things, but I notice I’m not wobbly when I get up or down from the floor now and I certainly feel stronger — not like when I used to lift, but like things aren’t going to give out.
Did I mention I was in really bad shape?
Seriously, my step tracker showed that on an average day I only get 3000 steps. When I went to the park to walk 3 miles I still would only get 7-8000. It’s bad.
Most exercise isn’t good for weight loss, and Seven is no exception. While it isn’t going to help you loose weight, but it is GREAT for general fitness, and it does help with maintenance. But HICT is not good for everything. You still need cardio, which I hate.
So over the past few weeks I’ve been doing more research. It turns out that steady state cardio for more than 45 minutes at a time is actually detrimental to weight loss. It causes blood sugar to drop, making you hungrier, and if you go too long it makes your body switch over into eat-itself mode, destroying any muscles gains. This makes total sense to me! Look at all the people huffing on the treadmill at the gym for hours at a time with no change. They are overdoing their cardio.
So, that’s how I decided to do C25k. The program gets you from being a nonrunner (actually I’m anti-running) and ready for a 5k in 8 weeks. This sounds impossible to me. I watched some video blogs online and got inspired. Some of these folks are really, really out of shape but they end up able to complete a 5k by sticking with the program.
This girl, Vaya, was particularly helpful:
So I’m trying it.
My goal is to run a 5k in October sometime.
So today I decided to start the program. Today the run/walk was 60 minutes of “running” and 90 minutes of walking. I ran the first 60 and felt great.
Second 60 also good.
Third 60 tried to pace myself a little better because I was getting fatigued and I could see I was going a lot faster than the run-a-couple-of-miles-at-lunch dudes at the park.
Fourth 60, I had to stop half way and walk. Bummer. I was getting discouraged and thought I might not make it.
Fifth 60. Did fine.
Sixth 60. Also fine.
I was so shocked when the “One Minute left” alert came up — how could this be? Sure enough, I had in fact done the whole course and survived!
The track near my house is 3/4 mile, and I did 3 circuits, or 2 1/4 miles running/walking. I am still flabbergasted.
Now, it was difficult. Very difficult. I need to learn to pace myself and relax my shoulders. And I could NOT have done it without the playlist I spent an hour making this morning. But, wow, I did it. Maybe there is hope that even I could run a 5k!