Got my run in, even if it was later

run5.png

I was finally able to get my run in today, albeit not without some issues. Thankfully, the issues had nothing to do with my health.

Since I missed my run in the morning, I had resolved to run after work. I hadn’t done this since I was on Active Duty, so I was wondering how it would go. I dressed up in my PT gear, got my Bluetooth headphones on, turned on my awesome PT playlist, and got my Fitbit ready by finding a GPS signal. Then, I (thought) I pushed the start button for the run and took off at a good clip. At the .5 mile mark, I wondered why the Fitbit hadn’t given me my half-mile split time, so I looked down at my watch. What I saw made me angry.

0:00:00 0.0 miles

I didn’t press the button properly, I guess. So, I went ahead and pressed it and continued on. I know from the distance and the pace that it was roughly 5 minutes for the half mile, so I resolved to add an entry into my PT log and went on. My goals for this run were to increase my time to 30+ minutes and to go past 2.5 miles. I did it on both counts!

I felt good on the run. I didn’t have any aches and pains, and I was able to run all the way through again. At the end, I was a little more tired than the last few runs, but I’ve pushed without pushing too hard. 30 minutes is the longest I’ll be running for the time being, so I’ll be working on increasing the distance within that time. That’s a goal for the next few weeks; the next few runs will be the same course I took today. If I finish sooner, so be it. If later, that’s okay too. I just want to get used to this distance and work harder later.

So, the image above shows the total distance and steps of the GPS data along with the manual log entry I made. I’m happy with the results, and I’m happy that I can run without lots of muscle pain or without feeling dead afterward. My legs are definitely in need of the day off, though. I look forward to being able to do daily runs at least 5 times a week in the future.

Annoyed with my alarm clock

This morning, I planned on waking up at 5:15 a.m. to run, but due to a power glitch last night around 6 pm (that only lasted about a second!), the speakers connected to my Amazon Echo Dot that we use as our alarm clock in our bedroom powered down. I woke up at 5:45 a.m. to find that the alarm didn’t go off as planned and I didn’t have time for my morning run today.

So… that means I get to run in the heat after work.

This is going to be an interesting experiment. It should be a bit cooler than the day’s high temperature since I’ll be running at around 6 pm, but also at a time of peak traffic, so I’ll have to run on sidewalks and try to stay away from the roads as much as possible. Fortunately, I have some new running clothes that are quite amazing at wicking and keeping me cool, so I’ll be putting them to the test today. I’m also looking forward to seeing how much energy I have, and how hard I can push myself to keep a good pace through the planned 30 minutes. Maybe running at the end of the day will be easier for me? Who knows. Hopefully I survive this one.

Mindset: Changed (changing?)

I have to admit something. I’m getting into the exercise thing.

I know. Where have I failed you?

I’m still not a huge fan of it, but I’m beginning to like how I feel afterward. During the run: still kind of sucky, but it feels good to be out there, moving, doing something. When I’m done, I feel like I’ve accomplished something besides making the bed and shaving.

I want to be able to enjoy running. I really do. I have read enough to know that people who have a positive mindset when exercising realize greater benefits from that exercise, and I don’t want to limit what I can get out of the time I spend working on my health. So, I’ve changed my mindset.

Much like I had to change my mindset when it came to my new lifestyle, I’m doing the same thing for exercise. I don’t want to go all gym rat or Crossfit because my goals have nothing to do with pushing myself pysically, but I do want to be able to run every morning and feel good afterward. I want to run to get thin; I don’t want to bulk up. I don’t want to be able to lift 450 lbs. I just don’t. But I do want to be fit.

So, I’m applying what I learned through my weight loss to getting fit. If my success in that area is any indication, I should have this running thing licked in another week or two and then it’ll be old hat. Or so I hope. Stay tuned.

Day 4 of Running

file_000-17Yesterday’s post was about Day 3 of Running. Today’s is about Day 4, although I didn’t run them on consecutive days. The magic of pre-posting has reared it’s head. Anyway, here’s my report for Day 4.

It went extremely well. I got up, put on the PT gear and my Bluetooth headphones and hit the pavement. I had a good pace to start with (9:30/mile) and kept my pace at faster than 10:30 for the rest of the run. I also added some more distance and two more minutes. Also, my average heart rate was up by 6 bpm over the past three runs which tells me I pushed it a little harder. Still not super-hard “OMG, I’m out of breath!” kind of pushing, but enough to get a little more out of it. I’m taking today off from running, but I’ll be back at it tomorrow for my fifth run. After that, I think I will lay off the daily run reports. I’m just posting these so people can see how it’s going for me, and how quickly I’m able to progress after not exercising since leaving active duty. All I did was lose weight and then hit the pavement.

Day 3 of Running

file_000-14

No, this isn’t turning into an exercise blog, I promise! However, exercise is now a part of my lifestyle, and not posting about it would be leaving out an important aspect of my journey. Besides, if I stick with the Paleo theme, I can just imagine myself being chased by a Sabretooth Tiger or a Wooly Mammoth or something. I’m sure our Paleo forebears did plenty of running!

My latest run was pretty decent. I started off with a good pace and settled into a little bit slower but still good pace. I also increased the distance a bit while the time increased by under a minute over the previous run. In any rate, I’m happy with the result, and happy to have broken the 2 mile mark in my morning run.

2016-09-15-10_36_40-movies-tv

I was experiencing a little bit of pain in my knee before I ran, but by being mindful of my steps and being careful, I found that the pain was some sort of phantom that disappeared, likely just an ache from sleeping. Once I was running, there was no pain at all. Breathing was pretty good today, too.

On the tech side of things, I had two new items with me today that helped my run. First, I got a belt that allows me to put my phone into it. This is huge because I hate having to carry or hold anything in my hands when I’m running. The second was a new pair of bluetooth headphones. These worked far better than I expected, and I’m really happy with them. I ended up buying another pair to give to Sherry for her runs.

I’m also using new shirts and shorts for running, and I have to admit that they are superior to regular t-shirts and cotton shorts. I don’t feel weighed down, and the sweat evaporates quickly which allows me to keep cool while running. Where were these shirts when I was on active duty?

All in all, I felt good again today. This “easing into things” is working out quite well. I might be able to keep this up for at least the next two decades.

Day 2 of Running is In The Bag

14317409_10207162407727649_8157470454600149778_n
Me, post-run, at 5:45 a.m.

I did it. I made it out for my second day of running. Notes from this run:

  • Started off with a good pace and after the first half mile, settled into a decent pace.
  • After the first mile was done, I felt absolutely great; no heavy breathing and no muscle aches or pain. If anything, I felt very neutral.
  • At the end of my 1.62 mile route, I realized I got there quicker than the first time, so I ran some more to get at least 20 minutes in. I ended up with 20 minutes, 32 seconds and 1.88 miles.
  • At the very end, I started to feel a little bit of aching in my right knee, but it’s not injured. I’ll take some Motrin today and it should be alright for the next run day after tomorrow.
  • The post-run walk was much easier, and I didn’t feel as winded or sore. If anything, I felt really good.

If runs can feel like this every time, it might not be so horrible.

I was explaining this to Stevie this morning on our way to work while stuck in traffic in the carpool lane, and I realized that I have a plan that just might work this time. I run as hard as I can without going past “easy.” When it stops being easy, I stop. I’m not interested in beating anyone in a race, or in getting to some super-fast speed goal. I don’t care about bulking up, or losing weight through running (which I know isn’t a thing). I’m after getting in better shape, using up some extra calories, and building stamina. By pushing past “Easy” a little at a time, I won’t be breaking any speed records in how quickly I will get into shape, but I am hoping that this plan allows me to get in shape without getting injured and without hating it every step of the way.

Some people really enjoy pushing themselves and “Feeling the burn.” I’m not one of those people. I enjoy a more leisurely pace when it comes to my exercise progress. I don’t dislike progress. I do like that. I just don’t enjoy pushing myself to a failure point like others do.

So, I know: running under 2 miles isn’t impressive. Running sub-11 minute miles is not impressive. But doing that after not running 100 yards in the past 20 years is a big accomplishment for someone who was over 312 lbs just a year ago. I’ll take that as a victory and continue on with my slow pace and try to enjoy it along the way.

Weight Loss for People with Physical Limitations

I just read another Facebook post by someone who has been injured and has been unable to exercise. I get it; I’ve been there. Using injury as a crutch to be fat was a specialty of mine (I’m not implying that the person making the Facebook post was doing this. I used to do that!). What made me sad was that this person still believed that exercise was the key to weight loss.

90% OF WEIGHT LOSS IS WHAT YOU PUT IN YOUR BODY. 10% IS EXERCISE.

I know this is a fact because I lost 110 lbs in one year without exercise. You read that right. I did nothing. Sure, I dabbled here and there with some physical activity, but nothing regimented and definitely nothing that would make me sweat. I only recently began doing push ups daily, but that’s a far cry from an exercise regimen. I’m working up to it, and I’ll get there someday (soon, I hope!), but for now, I’m still living an exercise-free life and still losing weight.

If you’re putting off losing weight because you think you need to exercise, stop. Stop buying into the hype and marketing that losing weight means sweating. It does not. Not even a little. “But I know people who have lost weight by exercising!” you’re thinking, and you’re not mistaken. People who exercise tend to eat better and pay attention to the quality of the food they are putting into their bodies. My sister is phenomenally fit, and she eats foods I would never even consider eating, but she eats them in very small quantities and she also exercises more than 90% of exercising people I know. Not only is she limiting her caloric intake, but she’s exerting far more than the average gym rat.

“So you’re saying that I can lose weight just by eating certain foods?” YES I AM! I did it. Look at this picture of me before and after. Bear in mind that the only difference between the two photos is 10 months and a different diet.

tppm

No, I’m not skinny (yet!), but I’m no longer obese. Also, I didn’t do some sort of weight loss diet like Adkins or the Cabbage Soup diet. I changed my eating habits and adopted the Paleo Lifestyle after doing a Whole30.

You can lose weight without exercise. You can have two broken legs and lose weight. You can be a paraplegic and lose weight. All you have to do is eat right.

I’m not taking anything away from those who love to exercise, or who use exercise to be fit. I just don’t want anyone to believe that if you can’t exercise, you can’t lose weight, or worse, if you don’t exercise you won’t lose weight. That’s complete BS, and I’d be very incredulous of any fitness “Expert” who tells you that working out is the only way to lose weight. I’d stay very clear of anyone who spews that BS.

Take it from a guy who lost 110 lbs in one year without exercise: change your diet, eat healthy, and just get up and move a little, and you will lose weight.