Readers’ Workouts (Belated)
Hosted by Joy’s Book Blog for readers who also like to exercise.
Sorry for being so late with updating this, what with one thing and another I forgot. This week I have run a total of eleven miles. 6.2 miles on Tuesday and 4.8 miles today. I’m back on form and rearing to go! Last week I was complaining that I’d slipped a bit – but now that I’m eating better and back into my routine and I feel much better. I hate that feeling of knowing you can do better but just not being able to achieve it.
I’m pleased with my 6.2 miles and I did it at roughly my usual pace. After what must have been the 4th mile I stopped feeling my legs which really helped! I think I also knocked a couple of minutes off my first 6 miles, but I’m not sure yet. It was a timed run with my running group and I didn’t get my time at the end, so will have to check next week. I think it was roughly 62 minutes.
I think I should concentrate on distance rather then speed. I’m a fairly steady 10 minute miler and I think I have been pretty much since I started. part of me wants to get faster but then I also think I should concentrate more on distance as that is where I get the satisfaction when I know I’ve ran further then before. I need to do more of that. I need to challenge myself to run further rather then just getting stuck in a rut.
I feel I want to talk a bit more about running. I’ve been introduced to this blog called This Chick Will Run and she’s been talking about what motivates her and I’d like to answer this question too.
I’ve been running for about 6 months now and in 6 months I’ve felt some changes.
My muscles are no longer achey or cranky like they used to be (apart from after that time I did speed training. Evil.) I am occasionally stiff but that’s all.
My heart and lungs have caught up with my feet which have always wanted to go fast. At one time my heart and lungs would protest – I couldn’t hold a conversation very well especially by the end but now I can. They say that a good comfortable pace is one where you can still talk. I have got there now.
Breathing is definitely easier now and comes almost naturally – I think I have definitely improved my max oxygen intake levels or whatever you call it.
I have only walked twice since finishing my beginner’s running group. If I do need to slow down, I take it down to a minimal jog instead as it’s too easy for me to want to stop completely if I walk.
I get jealous when I see other runners when I’m not running.
I know I have the ability to get better and I know that I will.
What motivated me to start running was that I needed to do something positive with my life and that sitting around munching biscuits wasn’t it. What has motivated me to carry on is a mixture of things – partly to begin with the fact that I’d started it and didn’t want to lose face by giving up. Mostly because it makes me feel good and it is like whenever I go out for a run I pound all the bad energy out of me and my body feels great afterwards.
Running has a lot of metaphors for life itself. It has made me feel happier, better about myself and more positive. I like the sensation of having the wind in my hair. A lot of life can be applied to running.
Running is hard. Sometimes you get to the middle of it and it feels awful but you push on and then suddenly… it is as if you don’t want to stop running. You can’t give up. Running can be a struggle but at the end it has its rewards.
Running is a challenge. Sometimes you have a bad run and it feels rubbish. You can either throw in your towel and give in, or you can go out again a day later and have a really good run and forget that you ever had a bad one.
Half of running I think is confidence which is also pretty much half of life. Just allowing your brain to think it can do this and it isn’t so bad, and pushing yourself to run more whilst not being afraid to fail.
This is my biggest sticking point. I do not want to ever get to that huffing puffing point of ‘I cannot go on’ I hate that feeling. It’s okay though to push yourself and need to walk at the end. I’m not saying to make a habit out of it all the time – it’s better to run 3 miles well, than struggle through 6 miles and have to walk half of it or feel terrible. Running is about enjoying yourself – if each run left you gasping for breath and struggling for every breath that isn’t fun.
I think exercise should be more about enjoyment and health, then aimed purely at losing weight because at the end of it all – it isn’t something you can stop when your goal is achieved. You have to stick with it and so you may as well enjoy it.
I don’t need to lose weight (the opposite but I’ve come to understand that this isn’t something you moan about although I don’t see why, one weight problem is about as valid as the other, it’s just that I am apparently ‘lucky’.)
For me I started running because I wanted to get healthy and I figured that if I started running, a healthier diet would follow because I’d be forced to make better food choices and no ditch lunch or forget to eat dinner. I think to an extent that has worked. I am being more conscious about what I eat.
Running has motivated me to feel better about myself and in turn, that motivates me to run more and to keep on running. My running group, without question also plays a large part in motivating me to run because without them I admit – I might not have got 10m down the road. Yet I am able to go out for runs on my own even though I do find it easier, and prefer to run with others. This is another achievement for me – the ability to have the confidence to take myself out and enjoy myself at the end of it. 6 months ago I would not have had this.
Running makes me smile. It makes me feel a little excited. It’s one of the best decisions I have made in life. I think if you ever want to take up an exercise, running is a good choice. It requires time, patience, stubborness and perseverance but the rewards are really there waiting at the end. It’s also relatively cheap once you’ve got yourself a pair of decent running shoes.
My goals for July: Run more 5-6 mile routes and maybe work towards a 7…