Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Punishing Run & Feeling Better

Okay, so I'll admit it - I was SORE after Tuesday's run.  I could feel it starting Tuesday night, and when I woke up yesterday, the part of my quads right above my knees were screaming, as was every single muscle in my calves.  But it felt good - it meant I'd done something to deserve that (even if it was only 8 minutes of running and 22 minutes of walking).  And even though it still hurt today, I went for another run - the couch potato plan calls for the same plan as Tuesday - 5 minute warm-up, then alternating 60-seconds of running with 90-seconds of walking.

Today, I really punished my body during those 60-second intervals (at least in the beginning of the run). I ran fast and hard until I could feel my lungs burning, a stitch in my side (which, of course, means I wasn't breathing properly), and I was close to throwing up.  But I did it, and made it the same distance as Tuesday, but 15 seconds faster (not a lot, but any improvement is good in my book).  So Tuesday, according to MapMyRun, I did 2.41 miles in 30 minutes, 17 seconds, which puts me at a 12:34 mile (average). That makes me laugh a little bit, since I was running 11:00+ minute miles last year in the summer, and that was with running the WHOLE time!  Today's run was also 2.41 miles in 29 minutes and 48 seconds, which is apparently still an average of 12:34. There's obviously room for improvement, but hopefully I can get there. 

On Tuesday was also my third fitness coaching appointment, where my fitness coach actually referred to me as "really fit" to someone else, which made me feel like she might be a little bit nuts, but I was happy with it. I admitted that I was only *just* starting my 5k training, but said I'd been doing better with eating - of course I rewarded myself with candy that night, but it's made me feel so tired and crappy that I think I might be leaving candy behind for a while - no, really.  We talked about how I'm having trouble drinking a lot of water, and she said that my body will get used to having more water - which is a good thing! So I've decided to try to introduce a little bit more water each day so I can get up to where I'm supposed to be.  Running helps that, because then I'm more thirsty, so hopefully it's just a little change that will make a big difference.

For my stats, I was down about two pounds to 152 (-ish, I don't remember the decimal point), so that made me happy. She didn't have the last body fat percentage written down, but it turns out that I do, so without working out and just eating a little bit better, I went from 24.1% on March 25th-ish to 23.1% on April 13th. Not bad. 

The other reason I like this fitness coach (besides the fact she called me "very fit") is that she's realistic and not pushy.  We talked about the sheet with the recommended percentage of body fat on it, and they have "ideal," "healthy," "improve" and "health risk" on there.  For a 30 year old woman - every time I go there by the way, she tries to insist I'm 29 because I was born in 1980, but my birthday is at the beginning of January, so I AM 30 already! - the ideal is 19.7, healthy is 22.7, improve is 25.4, and heath risk is 30.5.  Of course, I see those numbers and think, wow, I'm so terribly far from "ideal" and it will take me forever to get there, and I start to beat myself up for being at a higher percentage. And then, my fitness coach said to me on Tuesday - you want to be at "healthy" because "ideal" is really for 16 year olds who have the metabolism of a hummingbird.  Phew.  That made me feel much better, because I can certainly lower my body fat percentage by a couple of decimal points, but to lower it a few whole percentage points would take some real work and would put a lot of pressure on me. 

So I'm definitely feeling better than I was on Tuesday - I put a lot of pressure on myself to do everything, and then when I fail at one thing, I just don't want to play anymore. So I'm trying to be more realistic.  My plan is to really get back into running - I'm going to stick to the Couch to 5k again and do just that in terms of working out for the next few weeks.  I might try to get to a yoga class too.  And I'm going to make those small changes in terms of eating and drinking more water that I talked about with my fitness coach.  Then, in a couple of weeks, I'll review again and see what my next steps should be (rather than coming up with a whole ridiculous plan now and trying to stick to it, or doing too much at once).  So today, by the end of my run, I was actually starting to remember why I enjoyed running - the weather was beautiful, I do like the results and endorphins that a good workout produces, and I didn't have to feel guilty that I wasn't working out today.  Hopefully I remember that Saturday morning and get out there again and stick to this! 

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