One can always tell when I’ve been working out regularly, because I will bomb your social media feeds constantly with Polar HRM pictures. Why? Because everyone knows a workout didn’t really happen unless you have the HRM proof and share it with the world.
Week 1 (April 29th-May 5th)
Monday: Cardio Body Sculpt
Wednesday: Boot Camp
Friday: Boot Camp
Sunday: 4.26 Mile Walk/Jog
Even during my peak, those workouts would have been considered a solid week, if not a little overkill. But a wise spin instructor once told me, “It is okay to slow down if you get tired, but whatever you do, keep moving your legs. It is much harder to get going again once you stop.” If you’ve ever taken a spin class, you will know that this is true. Take all the resistance off if you have to, just don’t stop pedaling. This is also true for working out in general.
Clearly I had been struggling to find some sort of routine, but it’s been two weeks of my best behavior and I’m ready to call it a comeback. This is a critical period for me; I’m in a groove so I cannot stop moving. If I have the energy, why not fill in the spaces between? So I revisited my old nemesis: running. RunKeeper has all kinds of workout plans depending on your goals, and I casually chose the “Beginner Half Marathon” one.
NOT because I’m training for a half marathon. Not out loud anyway; remember how my plans always fall apart when I declare my goals like that? But really, I’m not. It’s not a big deal. I am just looking to improve my distance capabilities and endurance. The plan was seemingly made for me, since the runs are scheduled on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Convenient, right?
Week 2 (May 6th-in progress)
Monday: Boot Camp
Tuesday: 3.14 Mile Walk/Jog
Wednesday: Boot Camp
Thursday: Spin & 3.1 Mile JOG!
Friday-Sunday: in progress
I could be proud of the fact that, even though I woke up too late Thursday morning to get my run in before work, I decided to hit up the 7am spin class instead. I could be even prouder that I didn’t skip my run completely and laced up to get it done when I got home from work. But what I am proudest of, is that I ran the entire thing. I knew I had the 30+ minute continuous runner in me; I’d done it a few times before, but I thought I had a long way to go before I got back to that point.
I warmed up by briskly walking to the park, which is about half a mile from my house. The park has dirt track that loops around a couple baseball diamonds; one loop = half a mile. My workout called for an three easy miles (slow pace), so that’s six times around the track (math whiz!).
My boot camp instructor sometimes has us warm up by running one loop around the track within five minutes. For those who can’t run a mile under ten minutes, the modification is a run to the corner of one baseball diamond and back, then laps around the basketball courts until the five minutes is up. I don’t like having to do the modification, but I also don’t want them waiting on me while I schlep around the track.
At the beginning of last night’s run, without any pressure from the boot camp sergeant, I set one goal for myself: you don’t have to go fast, you don’t even have to beat five minutes, just make it around the whole thing without stopping. RunKeeper chimed in my ear at the five minute mark, and I was closer to the end of the loop than I thought I’d be, and I easily met my goal.
But why stop there? I set another goal: run the first mile without stopping. Boom, done. I continued to set these small goals in my head, which must have distracted me enough from my crying lungs and achy legs, because before I knew it, I was rounding the corner on my sixth lap, then sprinting a final 0.1 miles to log an even 5K. If I wasn’t in a public place, I would have thrown my arms up and crossed an imaginary tape, then collapsed to my knees and wept.
No, I wouldn’t have. I mean it was just three miles for Pete’s sake. A slow three miles. Many of you lovelies can do that in your sleep, or on “rest days.” But this is me, the hater of running, and I am infinitely proud of myself.
I skipped boot camp this morning because I had an early meeting at work, and I really should take a rest day, but I might do something low impact to keep my mojo going. Tomorrow I have another three miles on the schedule, and Sunday I’ve got spin in the morning plus another five miles. And you know what’s weird? I’m really looking forward to it.