Week Nine – Intervals Beat Injuries

Day 1 – My dog and I walked for an hour or so in the neighborhood and did about four miles. I love walking especially in the Fall. The air is brisk and the foliage is amazing. I wish I had time to walk for hours.

Day 2 – I do not love running. I thought I would be further in my conditioning than I am. I still can not run continuously for a mile and I was feeling discouraged today. I focused on form and breathing and used the poles as markers. I am still running/walking 2.25 miles in just under 30 minutes. The cool air goes right to my lungs but I am still out there. I will keep running.

Day 3 – Today was my big volunteer day but I got some stretching in. Any activity helps.

Day 4 – Another running day, groan. I got out there even though I just wanted to hibernate and eat. I made myself productive by doing laundry and stretching while watching a little tv. Then I got out and did my 2.25 miles. I ran a little better/faster than Tuesday. I felt good getting out especially since I really did not want too.

Day 5 – Jack and I went out for a good hike in the woods near our house. I am still on the alert for squirrels especially since My kids tease me that squirrels hate me. The other day I got hit on the head with some acorns and they said it was squirrels throwing them at me.

Day 6 – We were gone all day at my nephew’s confirmation so I did not get any exercise in. We had a nice day with family and good food grilled by my brother.

Day 7 – We ended up with a rare Sunday at home so I got my run in. I pushed myself and ran several lengths to every one walked but at various points had to take long walks. I know from my treadmill run last week that I am doing a good job at hitting my target heart rate for my age. I still felt somewhat discouraged by my progress until I read an article and had a conversation with a friend. The friend, thanks Shawna, pointed out that I am not as young as I once was and it is better to do the interval training than to get hurt. I am out there trying, which is more than some 45 year olds. The premise of the article was that it takes longer to form exercise habits than previously thought. Exercising three times a week may take as long as six month to form the habit! So my new mantra is “Intervals beat injuries” and I am still getting out there. I have been running three times a week for nine solid weeks and walking or doing other exercise as much as possible besides the running.

It isn’t easy getting out and running and I don’t know if I will ever love it, but I am going to give myself a year to create what I hope will be a lifelong habit of interval training at MY pace.


Week Eight – I am still running!

Day 1 – I did a lot of walking over the weekend and am going to try to keep it up in between runs soJack and I walked our four mile loop in the neighborhood. I am still avoiding the woods due to nature and all the recent rain.

Day 2 – today is a running day but I noticed right away that my pace is slower/shorter and I couldn’t run my initial distance that I had gotten up to. I ended the run pacing myself between telephone poles.

Day 3 – I was at the elementary school all day volunteering and meeting with a member of our county council, the superintendent’s staff, school officials and other parents about the ongoing mold issue. It is frustrating to all of us.

Day 4 – my oldest was up late last night because he was sick. He either has a bug or the combination of after school snacks he had did not agree with him. He is home from school but feeling better so he rode his scooter alongside while I ran. I paced myself using the telephone poles again, because that was easy to explain to Nate. He kept trying to talk to me, but it just was not possible because I breath so hard. I ran better today. I took long strides and it felt good to get out. We are heading to Virginia tonight because my kids have a three day weekend.

Day 5 – we were in the car quite a bit so I did not get any exercise. I find it challenging to be healthy when I am away from home, but I am working on that. We drove all over Central and Southwest Virginia. The mountains were amazing and the leaves are just starting to turn.

Day 6 – we went to Natural Bridge, VA today and toured a cavern and the natural bridge. We walked for about two hours and climbed many stairs. It was a lovely day with my family and the exercise was a bonus.

Day 7 – I got up before everyone and went to the hotel fitness center. I did 40 minutes on the treadmill. I did more walking at a pace of four miles per hour, but I also got a bit of running in. I don’t like the treadmill as much as running outside, but it beats the alternative of not exercising.

Week Seven and the Running Tramp

Day One – I got up this morning and put on my running clothes. I want to run Monday, Wednesday and Friday this week because my friend is visiting for the weekend and we want to walk or bike. I went to wake up the kids only to hear the familiar barking/honking sound of croup. My middle son would not be going to school. I fed everyone and got the other two off to school and took Will to the doctor. His lungs were clear but he had an ear infection.

While we wandered around Target waiting for his prescriptions, I saw a mini exercise trampoline. I had been thinking it might be good to get one to “jog” indoors without the cost of a treadmill. I could run and watch tv! I could also get workouts in during bad weather.

After dinner and getting the two youngest in bed, I decided to open up the box and put together my trampoline so I could still get my Monday run in. Luckily my ten year old has mad skills after putting together dozens or maybe hundreds of Lego creations so he helped me decipher the directions and figure out how to use the “spring tool”. His way worked much better than mine.

Then he went to bed and I jogged on my trampoline while watching last weeks’s Grey’s Anatomy episode. I ran this way for 40 minutes which is about ten minutes longer than my outdoor runs. I don’t think I was as hot and sweaty but I felt muscles ache (especially in the gluts) that I haven’t for awhile. It was definitely different than running outside, but I think I got a good workout in.

Day Two – I went for a walk today with Jack. We walked in the neighborhood for about 70 minutes. I stretched those sore gluts.

Day Three – I ran outside but it was hard today. I am not sure of my actual pace, but I did my usual 2.25 miles. I had to walk more than I did my last run. I don’t know if I am tired from the walk yesterday or just a little sore from my trampoline run.

Day Four and Five – It is raining cats and dogs so I did not get outside to exercise. I could not get myself to exercise inside either. I feel very tired. I am also upset about some extended family issues as well as continued mold in my kids’ school. I helped Matt and Nate pack for their camping trip.

Day Six and Seven – My good friend Claire is visiting and we walked both days in the drizzly weather. Saturday we walked four miles per hour for one hour and Sunday we walked a little longer at a slower pace. We had the dog and Claire was wearing Fit Flops because she had some gnarly heel blisters. Claire also got me to log my food into MyFitnessPal. We did quite well over the weekend with our food and drink choices. Gone are our days of squirt cheese product and Ben and Jerry’s pints. It helps to have friends to encourage and motivate me on the path to fitness.

Week six and the flipped course

Week 6
Day 1 – Today I took a walk in the woods with my dog. We had a nice long walk but the entire time I was scanning the trees in fear that squirrels would attack me again. I felt like I should be banging sticks together or ringing bells to let all the animals know that I was coming and they should stay away. Eventually I relaxed a little and got a nice walk in. The beauty of the area helps to relieve the every day stress I feel in my life.

Day 2 – I started out my run running farther than I ever have. I pushed myself and ran until I got to my first real hill. Then I walked for just over a block and ran again as far as I could. I am pretty sure that I ran my fastest time but was not keeping track. Today I had a hard time running again after I had stopped to walk. I know that I need to stretch and can really feel that my muscles are sore. I have not been this sore since my first week.

Day 3 – Wednesdays are a day that I volunteer in my kid’s school and we do a lot of running around, so I was not able to get a walk in. I did do some stretching, but still not the level I would like.

Day 4 – Today I brought my phone along so I was able to use the Endomondo app. I ran for .75 miles before walking for the first time. Then I walked three telephone poles and ran again. I feel like I am running for much of the time now, but today I felt slow. I am running at 12.52 minutes per mile. I certainly wouldn’t win any races but just a few weeks ago, I could only run a block at a time.
Over the years I have heard of so many people injuring them-self, that I really want to avoid that. My negative alter ego was asking me why I am even doing this. As I get older I really realize how important it is to be healthy not just for me, but also for my kids. Since I started my family later than many, it is even more important.
During dinner my ten-year-old was talking to me about muscle soreness and muscles breaking down and re-growing. He also asked me if I was going to run a 5K that many people from his school run in the spring and offered to run it with me. This is why I run, to set an example for my kids and to teach the how to live a healthy life. It makes it all worth it.

Day 5 – I took my dog for a long walk, but today we went through the neighborhood because the squirrels still freak me out. We walked for over an hour and I would guess about four miles, but I wasn’t keeping track. Never once on a walk, have I questioned why I do it and I really enjoy this form of exercise. I look forward to feeling the same about running.

Day 6 – I decided to run today because we have a lot of things planned tomorrow. I also had the bright idea of flipping my run and running the same route but the opposite way. It. Was. Hard. I thought the normal way was difficult because of the big hill and a long gradual hill, but this way was harder and I ran less than I have been. I also got a headache part way through it, but I kept on. I hope to run on Monday and hope that run is better.

Day 7- I finished off week six with a leisurely walk around several blocks while my middle son and his friend sold popcorn for Cub Scouts. It was slow and easy so I can’t really count it as exercise but I thought we were going to be sitting in front of a grocery store selling so I can’t complain.