Running for Boston
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Three Miles + Strides

A warm, sunny run. My miles were 14:35/135, 15:44/141, and 16:13/140. It’s a hilly route and it gets hillier as it goes. I ended with strides as prescribed by my 10K training program that I’m sort of following. It’s the only speedwork I do and it’s only once a week, so I hope it’s okay.

Today’s workout challenge:

  • 50 crunches
  • 80 squats
  • 20 crunches
  • 20 reverse crunches
  • 14 ab twists
  • 20 second plank
  • 30 squats
  • 40 second plank
  • 40 Russian twists
  • 20 crunches (which weren’t very good, in my son’s opinion

Managed to eat enough calories today, but a glass of orange juice and my Vitalyte took me way over the sugar count.

I can zip the dress I want to wear on Saturday!

Tomorrow, I am adding an extra day of running. Just half an hour on the treadmill for now. I have a long way to go to get to a decent mileage base. Luckily, this low heart rate training is pretty pleasant and it makes me want to run every day. The hard part is knowing that I have to build up very gradually and that it would be a good idea to keep at least one rest day for now.

Tag: Uncategorized
May 8th, 2013 - Comments Off on Three Miles + Strides

Monday Semi-Rest

I got my new FiveFinger KSOs today! REI’s outlet was having a too-good-to-be-true sale on discontinued colors from 2011, and miracle of miracles, they had my size! My feet are 8.5 (39), which I believe is literally the most common shoe size for women, so I never get to buy shoes on clearance. I also had a huge dividend from buying winter gear while we were in Salt Lake City for Christmas one year. I ordered the shoes and then waited for the email saying “we’re sorry, we don’t actually have your size in stock.” Instead, I got an email saying they had been shipped! Then, today I checked the tracking out of curiosity and saw that they were due to be delivered today! When they arrived, I immediately put on the “clay” colored ones. I’ll wear them to walk the dogs tonight. They actually fit (another fear was that they were on sale because they were sized wrong or something.)

I ate less sugar today. This week, I might completely cut out sugar, mostly because I have a dress I want to wear at Rocky Horror this weekend and it’s slightly too small. (It’s a late-80s 11/12, which translates to a contemporary 7/8, I think.) The theme is 80’s prom and I have all the accessories– including a Swatch watch and giant hair. If it doesn’t fit, I’ll just do 80’s Madonna. It’s too bad I didn’t own my prom dress, because it would still fit. (I borrowed it and it was slightly too big.)

I had to take another rest from yoga because of my wrists. I might have to practice only every other day until my wrists get stronger. I kind of wanted to take this day as a semi-rest day. All I did today for workouts was walk the dogs around the block and do the May Workout Challenge.

  • 45 crunches
  • 75 squats
  • 20 crunches
  • 20 reverse crunches
  • 14 ab twists
  • 20 second plank
  • 30 squats
  • 35 second plank
  • 35 Russian twists
Tag: Injuries, May 2013 Workout Challenge, Yoga
May 6th, 2013 - Comments Off on Monday Semi-Rest

Sunday Run

Well, that run was excruciatingly slow and I still struggled to keep my heart rate below 140 at a 15:40 pace. I’m going to have to do at least some of my runs on the treadmill during this phase. Walking is very good for me and I enjoy it, but I do want to work on the running muscles, too. It was a nice cool weekend (for Texas.) I complained about being cold, but the afternoon runs were nice.

Looking at my diet log on MyFitnessPal makes it very clear I have to cut way back on sugar. I’m not completely eliminating it, but one thing I’m doing is cutting back to only one cappuccino (with sugar) a day. The rest of the time, I’ll drink black coffee. I’ll see whether that helps.

Last night was the first night in more than a month that I had trouble getting to sleep. It was definitely because I had a soy latte right before bed (and maybe because I had to take four days off from yoga practice.) It’s hard work for a night owl like me to stay on something resembling a day schedule, though it’s not a huge deal right now what schedule I’m on since I’m still job-hunting. But once it gets hotter, I will want to be done with my runs by eight or nine AM. I hope last night’s sleep problems were just a blip.

Consistency is going to be a major part of my Boston plans. This aerobic base-building could end up taking me a couple of years, even if I am consistent, so I can’t afford to lose days. I’m pretty happy with my Ashtanga consistency. I did have to take a quick break because of my wrists being sore, but today’s practice was fine. I’m adding “habits” slowly. For March and part of April, it was just the Ashtanga. Middle of April, I added running 4 days a week, then I started the May fitness challenge with my derby friends on May 2. This week, I’m adding in a 30-minute MAF (HR 140 bpm) run on Wednesdays– probably on the treadmill– and a 30-minute MAF bike on my exercise bike on Fridays. Tomorrow is a day off from heart rate training, but I still have yoga and the workout challenge. And I’m probably mowing the lawn with my 75-lb lawn mower (I only use self-propelled if I really, really need it.)

I’m kind of enjoying having the luxury of exercising 2 hours a day. I read an assertion that said to be successful with this type of training, you should be logging at least ten hours a week. I’m not sure how I will adjust my exercise schedule once I have a job. Mr. Zippy has been exercising, so at least some of the time, I can go to the gym with him and use the treadmills. I’ll probably have to split my schedule into an hour before work and an hour after work. I hope I’m fit and healthy enough to do that once it comes to that.

Oh and speaking of being cold, I can’t really get too discouraged if it takes me a while to lose weight. I needed a sweatshirt this evening (shivering at 72 degrees!), so I found one I bought while I was doing my Master’s degree, back when I was getting up to 200 pounds. Now, it’s a tent. Luckily, I like my sweatshirts huge. This reminds me that I have done a lot towards my health.

Easy 2-Miler

Back from an easy two mile run. I did a lot of reading last night about Maffetone-style training and I’m sold. I’ve dropped my heart rate alert down to 130-140 (180-my age.) I’m going to stay in that range for a while and see if I get any improvement. It will definitely be extremely slow, but if it works, it will be worth it.

Today’s May Workout Challenge:

  • 15 crunches
  • 15 reverse crunches
  • 12 ab twists
  • 15-second plank
  • 25 squats
  • 30-second plank
  • 30 Russian twists
  • 12 sit-ups (I’m substituting crunches because I want to work abs, not hip flexors.)

Mostly Rest Day

I had to take another yoga rest day. My wrists are still sore. Tomorrow is the official rest day, so hopefully by Sunday, my wrists will be up to the series again. Tomorrow is an easy 2-mile run, so I think I’ll try the 140 heart rate.

For the May workout challenge, I did:

  • 30 crunches
  • 60 Squats
  • 15 crunches
  • 15 reverse crunches
  • 15 ab twists
  • 15-second plank
  • 25 squats
  • 25-second plank
  • 25 Russian twists
  • 10 sit-ups (I’m substituting crunches because I want to work abs, not hip flexors.)
Tag: Heart Rate, Injuries, May 2013 Workout Challenge, Yoga
May 3rd, 2013 - Comments Off on Mostly Rest Day

Four mile run

Today was a nice, easy four-mile run. I’m starting to feel just a little sore. I think I can push through, though, and it will be better in a couple of weeks. Once again, this was a heart rate run on hills. I got really hungry in the third mile– supposedly that means I was burning glucose, not fat. The theory is that running below a certain heart rate trains your body to burn fat instead of glucose, so you’re not supposed to be hungry. But I’m still new at this and pretty untrained in this method, so it will probably be a while.

Starting next week, I might add in easy 1-2 mile runs on Wednesdays and/or Fridays. I need to ramp up my frequency slowly, but I want to run every day. I mean, I physically and emotionally want to run every day. Right now, I end every run wishing I could run some more. However, I need to slowly build up to daily runs, I think.

I was so hungry after my run that I came home and made gluten-free, vegan pancakes immediately (they weren’t that great.) That meant I had to delay yoga to the evening (and then cancel because my wrists said “no thank you.”). I’ve also been invited to this crazy May exercise challenge group, so I’m going to give it a try (it involves a lot of squats and crunches.)

Today’s plan is

  • 25 crunches
  • 55 Squats
  • 10 crunches
  • 10 reverse crunches
  • 10 ab twists
  • 10-second plank
  • 20 squats
  • 20-second plank
  • 20 Russian twists
  • 7 sit-ups (I’m substituting crunches because I want to work abs, not hip flexors.)

It wasn’t too difficult today, but maybe my form wasn’t very good.

Tag: May 2013 Workout Challenge, Running, Yoga
May 2nd, 2013 - Comments Off on Four mile run

Three Miles Plus Strides

I’m really enjoying these low heart-rate runs. I feel great when I’m done and can’t wait to run again. I think I’m only a few weeks from being able to run the whole route under my target heart rate max (currently 147, but I suspect it should be closer to 140. Once I can run the whole route at 147, I’ll drop the rate to 140.) I’m reading a great thread about low heart-rate training at the old Cool Running boards (man, I miss those. They are not the same now that Active took over.) The thread is very inspiring and I hope to report those kinds of successes myself in a few months or years. One thing I can say is that I am really enjoying my runs. I don’t hurt, I feel only slightly sore afterwards, and I feel energized. This is a type of training I could do indefinitely.

I did heart rate training once before, when I was speed-walking and strength training in the early 90s. I remember being pretty successful then. Because I am so flighty, I didn’t stick with it long enough to see what I could accomplish, but after six months, I was walking faster than 11-minute miles.

The run portion of today’s run was exactly three miles. This will be a good loop to test myself on in the future. All of my Tuesday runs for the rest of this month and for next month are three mile easy runs plus strides.

For this run, I wore my Five Fingers. For the last 30-second stride, I ran barefoot on the soccer field. I think in a few weeks, I can do my Saturday easy run in Five Fingers as well. The rest of the runs are in my Newton Distancias, but I want to work my really flat Newton MV2s into the rotation.

I wish tomorrow were a running day. But rest days are good. And I still have Ashtanga.

Tag: Heart Rate, Running
Apr 30th, 2013 - Comments Off on Three Miles Plus Strides

Running Rest Day and Yoga Progress

Today is one of the rest days from running. Did some light yard work– mostly replacing washers on the various hoses and setting up a lazy person watering scheme on the balcony. I’m very, very slightly sore (feet and calves mostly) so it was good that I took the day from running like I’m supposed to.

I’m really happy with the progress I’m making with yoga. I am trying to practice non-attachment and non-identifying, but it does feel good to get stronger. I can’t quite hold chaturanga at the lowest point, but I might be there in a month or so. I have the rest of my life, so no rush. Today was the first day I got into the headstand and the three wheel/upward bows in the closing sequence. Slowly working on the backwards rollover– I’ve done it in pole class and Tae Kwon Do, but never at home without supervision. I’m also still working on lifting up for the vinyasas in between the seated poses. Today, I was able to bind on one side of Marichyasana A (Here are some examples, though I can’t bend forward yet with a straight back.) I was also able to lean forward in (almost) bound lotus and touch my head on the ground. That pose will probably be easier as I lose weight.

Speaking of losing weight, I haven’t lost any this past week. I’m not terribly surprised. I’m hoping this low heart rate training and the food logging will kick in soon. I’m not going to get frustrated, although it is annoying to have My Fitness Pal tell me that if I ate the way I did this week, I’d be 139 pounds in five weeks. Yeah, I wish. It’s too bad it’s just not really as neat as all that. All I can do is keep plugging away.

I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s workout. Three miles slow (I’m going to run it at 147 or lower) followed by three 30-second strides with 2 minutes rest. In my Vibrams.

I forgot to mention, I’ve started foam rolling again. My IT band feels fine, but now my gluteus medius is tender!

Tag: Yoga
Apr 29th, 2013 - Comments Off on Running Rest Day and Yoga Progress

Good run

Today’s four miles took a long time, since I ran them as a heart rate run. I think this is good for me, though. I finished the run still wanting to run more. It’s possible my heart rate is set too low, since I don’t even feel like I’m working until I’m halfway up a hill. On the other hand, I would love to feel the same at the top of the hill as I feel at the bottom. Tomorrow’s a rest-from-running day (my current schedule is only four days a week of running), but I’m dying to add more running. I think I’ll stick to the plan another week or so before I get crazy. Any new runs I add will definitely be HR runs. I feel great when I’m done! Wish I could run more, but I think that will come as I work on it. I could probably do these Heart Rate runs for several years and keep improving.

Tag: Heart Rate, Running
Apr 28th, 2013 - Comments Off on Good run

Heart Rate Run

I did decide to do today’s easy 2-miler as a heart rate run. I tried to stay in zone 3, or lower than 147. It was a pretty easy run, but I did have to walk quite a bit because the hills jacked up my heart rate. It was 73 and sunny (felt like 80 by the time I was done!) Tomorrow is an easy 4-miler, so I think I might go ahead and do it as a heart rate run, even though I’ll have to walk some of it. I have to look at the long term benefits of doing more training in the aerobic zone.

Tag: Heart Rate, Running
Apr 27th, 2013 - Comments Off on Heart Rate Run