Sunday, March 28, 2010

C25k Week 1 Day - uhhhh something

So I officially started Couch to 5k this week - twice. The first start was on Monday and it was hard! I made a rookie mistake and kicked the treadmill too fast on my first running session. I made it through that one but by even the second session I was feeling my lungs and legs burn. So I decided that the best thing to do was run for as long as I could and then walk. I kept my walking session times starting at the same time (for example if I was supposed to run minutes 10:00 to 11:00 and then walk but only managed to run to 10:45 I still considered my walking session starting at 11:00 and going till 12:30). It wasn't the best way to do it but it worked for me.

So Wednesday I tried to do it all over again. This time I kept my speed lower but just wasn't feeling it. I was feeling it more in my legs than I was on Monday, which was weird. Last Saturday I ordered some new running shoes from New Balance (I know, I really should have gone to be fitted, but there's no where near me to do it) and they came Tuesday, so Wednesday was the first time I ran in them (walked in them Tuesday). So I don't know if I was just still trying to break them in or what, but my legs felt so heavy and awkward. I kept with my "run as much as you can" plan and was just really happy that I kept myself on the treadmill the whole time.

I tried again yesterday and actually did the entire program the correct way! I cannot tell you how happy I was when that last running session was over. Not because I was happy to be done running, but because I'd actually done it! I was so incredibly excited to actually do it correctly and it gave me such a huge burst of confidence. Now, I have to say that it wasn't pretty and it wasn't fast by any means; but it was completed, and that's the important part. Plus I even managed to stay on the treadmill for an extra five minutes after the time designated by the program to give my legs an extra stretch.

So since I've started this program with plenty of time before my 5k in July, I've decided that I'm going to count Saturday as my official day 1 of week 1 and will go from there with Monday as day 2 and Wednesday as day 3 and just consider last Monday and Wednesday as extra days. I really think it's important to start out with a good foundation to training so I think it's really important that I'm totally comfortable with week 1 before I go on to week 2. So I'll be back to let you know how official week 1 went!

I'm trying to turn myself from a self-proclaimed non-runner into a pavement-pounder by my first 5k this summer - and I'm doing it with the lovely Breanne of "Bella Vita". Check out my announcement post here and check back weekly for my training updates as I make my way through the Couch to 5k program. And if you're a runner with any tips I'd love to hear them!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Leaving My Couch

So let me let you in on a little secret: I'm not a runner - never have been (shocked?). Once, in 8th grade, I got the crazy idea that I was going to join the track team (maybe I had a head injury or something, I don't know what caused the idea). So I went home, laced up my totally crappy tennis shoes and set off..... I barely made it around the corner. My track team dream died that day (tear).

Really though I don't know what I was thinking there. I never liked running, or really any physical activity, growing up. I was the kid who tried to figure out any excuse to get out of gym class - although I partly blame this on being so much taller and more, um, developed then my peers for years and then being heavier when I was a little older. I played some sports growing up, softball and basketball, but not really by choice and finally whined and complained enough that my mom let me quit. I was much happier sitting on the sidelines with the marching band then actually running up and down the court (::cough-nerd-cough::).

But in the last year or so that has really started to change. As I've slowly gotten more active I've also developed a bit of a love for sports (can I blame this on BWW and their 8 million tvs?). Now I look forward to going to the gym and moving my rear, I turn on Sports Center if I see that it's on, I read the sports section of the newspaper, and just the other day at work I was telling a couple coworkers that I think it would be fun to be a sports reporter (wait, who am I??!). So, basically I'm starting to love all those things that I absolutely despised and schemed to avoid as a child. Better late than never I guess, right?

So, where am I going with all this? Remember in my last post how I mentioned that there was possibly something in the works? Well, the time has come for me to let the cat out of the bag.

My friend Breanne of "Bella Vita" and I have been emailing back and forth about our trips to the gym and our fitness goals. Breanne is trying to lose the weight she gained when she had her adorable little girl, Bella (have you seen this kid? freaking adorable). In one of our emails I mentioned that I was thinking about starting the Couch to 5k program to give me something to focus on and work toward (I do better with a goal, but that's another blog post). Breanne said that she'd thought about the program too and thought she might look into and maybe we could do it together. Then she came back and made me put my money where my mouth (typing finger?) is..... she asked if I actually wanted to do a race. And, wait for it, I said sure (seriously, who am I??)

So, this July Breanne and I will be doing a 5k right here in my town (which is conveniently close to Breanne's town). I'm planning to start the C25K program this week so that I have plenty of time and can 1. repeat any days or weeks if I need to and 2. have plenty of time to run 3.1 miles before the big day. I'm really, really nervous (have I mentioned that I've never been a runner?) but am also really exited to have a goal to look forward to. I know in the blog world sometimes a 5k is considered child's play, but crossing that finish line will be a huge deal to me, and getting to that point is going to be a lot of work. But don't worry, I'll fill you in on every detail of that work (you were worried, right?)

So, expect a report on Week 1, Day 1 later this week. And if you never get it someone check the wall behind the treadmills at the gym and make sure I'm not splattered against it.

Anyone out there a runner? Got any tips for a total newbie?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Working it with Oprah and Tim

So I went to the gym this afternoon (yay me!) and when I walked in there were 4 men, two older & 2 young-ish, scattered across the treadmills, bikes, and elliptical. So I grab the open treadmill in the middle, put my headphones in, and start walking. Then I look up at the tv on the wall and notice that it's on (first time I've seen it on). So, what are these men watching? Oprah. Oprah and Tim Gunn (from Project Runway) doing makeovers on viewer's husbands, to be exact.

Yep, all these men and the tv is on Oprah. I was totally shocked. Then I noticed that the remote was in one of the cup holders on my treadmill. So I'm wondering if maybe the person who turned on the tv had been on my treadmill before all these guys came in. Or, maybe they were watching whatever was on before (what's on before Oprah?). Or, maybe these guys just like Oprah. Who am I to judge, right?

Anyway, I had a great workout. Once I hit my goal time I realized I was really close to a mileage marker, so I decided to go to that number (it was a .5 mile marker). Then my stubbornness kicked in and I decided to round that number up to a whole number. I'm quite sure that is the most I have ever actively walked (minus theme parks and things). At that point though I knew I should stop before I totally overdid it, which is a good thing! I got off the treadmill and had to stand there for a minute because my legs were totally shaking. It was so strange, I felt just fine on the mill, but as soon as I was off my legs were like jelly. Doug yelled at me when I told him and told me not to overdo it, but I promised him I didn't do it on purpose and that I felt just fine until my feet hit the ground. Who knows, guess I need to watch it.

As a side note, I realized that I really need to get some new socks. The ones I wore today moved around a lot while I was walking and really bugged my feet. Any recommendations for good walking/running socks?

Also, there may be something really cool in the works with one of my blogging buddies. It's not set in stone but I'm really excited at the possibility.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Card Carrying Member

As of this week Doug and I are officially card-carrying gym members. I've never belonged to a gym before but am actually pretty excited about it. I'm really looking forward to having some cardio options other than walking/running outside. I went for the first time today and totally broke a sweat and got my heart pumping. Oh, and I learned a few lessons too.

Lesson #1: Always take your bottle of water in with you. Leaving it in the car is stupid and you'll spend the last 10 minutes on the treadmill lusting after it.

Lesson #2: Take a towel. I never understood why people took towels to the gym or why articles on gym etiquette talked about cleaning up any sweat you dripped - I always wondered how people could be sweating so much. I get it now and will be taking a towel with me from now on.

Lesson # 3: Being stubborn isn't always bad. I'm a typical Scorpio in that I'm totally stubborn and this paid off today when I kept thinking "I'd really like to get off this thing" because then I'd think "No, I haven't hit my time yet" and "That old guy over there hasn't stopped yet and he's been on here longer than you!" Yeah, sometimes stubborn = good.

Lesson # 4: The elliptical is hard. Seriously, really hard. First it took me a minute to figure out how to get the dang thing to go, then my arms and legs were not wanting to work together and kept all trying to go in different directions. Once I finally got it figured out I realized that the machine is just hard in general. I thought I was going to fall off, or at least my legs were going to fall off. Needless to say I didn't last long on there, but never fear: I will conquer the elliptical. Mark my words.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Mr. Grux goes to Home Depot

I took the pup out to Home Depot this morning to look at the new grills; our grill is a few years old and someone (ummm, me) accidentally melted the knobs last summer (aluminum foil + highest heat setting + getting distracted in the kitchen = plastic-dripping knobs). So we think we're going to pick one up when we get our tax return.

Anyway, this was G's second trip to Depot but the first time with me so I was a little nervous about how he'd do. But he was great. People kept talking about how cute he was and how well behaved he seemed and he'd let them pet them and didn't jump on them or anything. I was such a proud puppy mommy.

One funny thing was that Grux likes to try to lick the ground under our grill after we've used it to see if he can grab any scraps so he kept trying to look under the grills and was looking at them like "what the heck? where's the food?!" silly pup.

So here are a few pics from G's big morning out.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

I Could Walk 500 Miles

Well, I could, but apparently it would take me awhile.

When I started my new job they gave us all pedometers as a welcome gift from the wellness division (would it surprise you right now if I mentioned that I work in an offshoot of health care?). Well, I brought it home that first day and sat it on my desk. The other morning I just happened to see it sitting there and decided on a whim to wear it and have done so a few times since.

Let's just say the numbers have been much lower than I expected. I already knew that it would be lower than the recommended 10,000 steps, but I didn't expect to only get a quarter of that amount the first day. And when the second day was even worse I was really sad. How am I this sedentary? How?? Today has been better but that's mainly because I spent the morning hitting some local stores with the fam instead of sitting at a computer all day.

So I realize that I really need to do something about this. Thankfully it is warming up here and the giant piles of snow are almost totally gone, so I should be able to start walking Grux in the evening now, without either of us freezing or having to climb massive snow mountains, which should encourage our walks to be longer. Plus we're planning to check out a local gym soon, so that's good.

I think I'm going to keep up wearing my new accessory to keep an eye on how I'm doing, and I'll be sure to report back: there's no better motivation than putting things out on the Internet for strangers to read. :)

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