Weigh-in this morning was frustrating. 166lbs. I wanted to be at 160lbs, but I didn’t make it happen. Made some more poor choices. Friday was my ‘fructose sensitivity’ test. Go to hospital starving, drink 8oz of pure fructose, breath into this capture bag every 15 minutes for 1.5 hr, then every 30 minutes for 2 hrs. Leave with your stomach cramping with a ‘I am going to starve to death’ feeling. Race into gift store on way out of hospital, grab 2 cookies & some chocolate. Drive fast to Chick-Fill-a’s for not one, but two chicken salad on whole wheat sandwiches. Race home, while eating & pass out for a 2.5 hour nap.
So, no riding Friday. We did ride 24 miles & ran 2.75 miles Saturday. Sunday I used some other riders as an excuse to short my long ride, to give my back a rest. I did 28 miles. That was probably a good thing. Joined everyone after the ride & had a large blackberry cobbler with ice cream. That was definitely a bad thing. I am 32 days away from the surf/spin event. Having trouble being positive, but I will do it any way.
And So I Run
Running is an excellent way to get in shape & lose weight. For me, it’s a great way to cross-train & burn extra calories. Having a definable goal makes training better. It gives you a more finite feeling to your training as well as something to look forward to. So, The Guy & I are beginning to run. (no, that is not me or him in the photo) Actually we’ve been at it since June. We began with walk/runs, and gradually worked our way up. I am comfortably at a point where I can run a half mile without stopping. I do 3 mile runs, walking for 3 minutes at each half mile point. I don’t include the walking in the distance measured.
A 5K is a good choice for a first race because of its relatively short distance and because it is the most common race distance. There should be no trouble finding a 5K race in your area at most times of the year. You can race at any time of the year, but for your first one you may want to consider a race in the spring or fall, when the temperatures are mild. Begin training with at least 6-8 weeks of time prior to the event. (If you are starting with walking, add an additional 4 weeks to your training time.)
Try to pick a large race for your first one. A larger field will provide a “party atmosphere” that will help motivate and encourage you. A large field will also make new runners less self conscious about where they finish. The large field will provide plenty of runners in the front, middle and back of the pack.
Beginning a new discipline is most successful when you start easy & plan for long-term success. For those of us learning how to run, we’ll start with easy runs. Easy runs should be run at a pace that feels fairly comfortable. You should be breathing hard, but should be able to carry on a conversation. If you are breathing so hard that you cannot talk, you are running too hard. If you can sing, you are running to easily. (that is definitely not me in the photo)
You will determine your starting point based on what you have been doing fitness-wise. If you have not been doing any physical activity, you may need to consider walking at first. If you need to do this, use the same mileage distance as what you will be running. Walk briskly to increase your heart strength. As the walking becomes easier, and your ankle ligaments stronger (from the walking) begin to perform walk/run/walk/run training. Every week make the walking portion shorter & the running portion longer.
You will reach a point where you are running most of the way, then finally the whole way. Once you are able to run the entire distance, you can begin speed & hill training. Make sure you don’t move into the speed/hill training before you are ready. This will cause an injury or a weak area in your body that will continue to cause you problems.
Starting out, listen to your body. If you start to experience minor muscle pulls, you may be increasing your distance too fast. By taking it easier in the beginning, you will become a stronger runner in the end. At the same time, make sure you push hard enough to see a slow, steady increase in strength, skill & distance. Don’t be too easy on yourself. Once you begin to feel stronger, you’ll be able to push a little harder.
All work and no play makes Jill an underperforming athlete.
Build rest & recovery into your training program. Doing a modest amount of good-quality work during an extended rest period can totally prevent fitness fall-offs. Because the intense work preserves fitness or nudges it upward, while the added rest permits the repair of muscle cells and the synthesis of new enzymes, mitochondria, and capillaries – things which make you a better athlete!
Rest and recovery is not the same as skipping a workout. Successful athletes and fitness enthusiasts on every level build this crucial component into their training programs. While you already know that you have to progressively challenge your body with activity if you want to build your fitness, here’s a surprise: the actual physiological gains occur during rest and recovery!
Use rest and active recovery along with proper exercise training, and you will take your workout efforts to new levels and produce greater results than if you concentrate on working, working working. We aren’t talking skipping training, just find a balance and work out at the right level of effort so that you enhance your training results. We’re talking quality training, rather than quantity training.
Note there are 2 types of rest. Complete rest and easy rest. Both are important to increasing your fitness levels and both are very different. Complete rest is just that. The day you do no physical activity at all. Rest. Period. No matter what your fitness level, you need one full, complete day of rest from training each week. Then there is easy rest, or active recovery. This is also sometimes called an easy day. You still want to spend the usual time training, but perform at an easier intensity than normal training. It’s good to follow hard days up with an easy day, giving your muscles time to recover. So easy days once or twice a week. Make them scheduled easy days, not “I feel wimpy, so it must be an easy day“.
While effort is 50 percent of the training equation, restoration and recovery is the other important 50 percent. To see results, you have to work out at a level of effort that challenges your body, whether you’re doing cardio, strength or flexibility training. However, this does not mean that you have to hurt your body or always work out harder to get results. Without rest, both types, you will not reach your true fitness goals.
So there you have it. The first part of Run Training. Next we’ll go into stretching properly. Keep in mind, I don’t know anything about running, I am a cyclist. The information I am providing is different things I am learning as I start running. If you are new to exercise, it is very important to work with your doctor to begin a successful exercise habit.