Tag Archives: treadmill

Thirteen Weeks Way-In

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If you’ve ever seen Mame, then you’re familiar with the joke about Upson Downs.  I think I’m going to rename my life Upson Downs.

I’m still at a weight loss plateau.  I think I’m going on, oh, up to three weeks of a plateau.     I suppose I need to be a bit more vigilant about what I eat, and how, to make sure I haven’t become complacent with that aspect of my lifestyle.  Plus, I have several after-work events coming up in the next couple of weeks, so I should make an extra effort to eat healthy when I can to prepare for those events where it’s not so easy.  (Breaded chicken cutlets and pasta seem to be very popular at these kind of events.)

I should also mix up my exercise.  Case in point:  I didn’t do any yoga last week.  Zip.  Zilch.  I miss it.  I need to do it.

Speaking of mixing up workouts, Sundays have become my de facto day to shake it up.  Yesterday, I ran the trails instead of the treadmill.  I purposefully did interval training.  I have no idea how many miles I ran, but I was on the trails for an hour.  At one point, I really ran.  I mean knees-pumping-feet-pounding-the-ground-sprinting-flying ran.  It only lasted a minute (if that), but it felt great.  As for the treadmill, I averaged about 11:52 per mile.  On Wednesday, I ran 2 miles in 22:57 (or about 11:29 per mile).  Now that I know I can run on the treadmill for a mile or two, I feel like I should mix it up and spend some time doing interval training on the treadmill.  Maybe that will break my plateau.

How was your week?  What are your goals for this week?

Eleven Weeks Way-In

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I’m eleven weeks way into my new healthy lifestyle.  Last week, I challenged myself to tackle the elliptical machine and recumbent bike at the gym, and to do a couple of days of restorative yoga.  I only met half of my challenges.  I tried the elliptical for three minutes.  I just don’t get it.  I didn’t feel comfortable on it, and I’m not even sure I was doing it right.  The ellipticals are really popular at my gym–there’s usually more people on the ellipticals than the treadmills.  Why?  I enjoy the treadmill a lot more.  As for my other goals, I totally skipped the bike.  My left knee is not 100% and I’m afraid the bike would wreck it.  (That’s my excuse and I’m stickin’ to it.)  As for yoga, I only had one yoga session that I felt was restorative and focused.  Maybe I should start doing more yoga at night, as opposed to before work, so that I can totally relax in it without watching the clock.

As for my other activities for the week, I averaged about 12:20 per mile on the treadmill.  On Sunday, I decided I needed a break from the treadmill and ran around the hilly neighborhood instead.  (Everything in moderation, right?)  I followed it up with yard work.  (Now that’s definitely something I do in moderation!)

I’ve lost about 17-18 pounds overall, and I think it’s starting to show.  There are certain parts of my body that look a bit more toned, although there are other parts that still look just as soft and flabby as ever.  It’s a process, though, so it takes time.  However, I had to go shopping–had to, I swear!–because my black suit was literally falling off me!  I tried on a bunch of size 12 suits and dresses, and was amazed at how well they fit.  Shopping is definitely a more pleasant experience these days.

It seems, however, that my weekends are not as pleasant in the sense that I’m not as good with exercise and diet on the weekends as I am during the week.  On week days, I have a very structured schedule with meals and snacks at certain times of day, lots and lots of water (at least 64 ounces per day), occasionally yoga in the mornings, and the gym in the evenings on at least 4 week days.  But on the weekends?  Forget it.  My “meals” turn into sloppy foraging in the fridge at random times of day, and I don’t drink nearly as much water as I do during the week.  It leads to unhealthy choices.  For example, on Saturday I sorta forgot to eat lunch, so I was ravenous by the time Hubby and I were at a street fair on Saturday afternoon.  We decided to get lunch right away.  Rather than choose a restaurant offering fresh, healthy food, we dashed into a bar and ate nasty pub food.  I actually apologized to Hubby because the “food” was obviously thawed-out, microwaved crap.  I didn’t eat much of it, but I followed it up with a sugary drink from Starbucks.  On Sunday, I ate beyond feeling satisfied at lunch, then went to dinner with a friend and had a bit too much sangria.  My poor weekend food choices showed on the scale this morning.

So, my goal for this week is, again, to do more restorative yoga.  Also, I want to be more consistent with diet and exercise on the weekends, especially with my water intake.

What are your goals for the week?

What’s That You Say?

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Gym Dandy

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Yesterday was my second day at the gym, and my second time on the treadmill in more than a year.  Last year, I ran maybe a 15:00 minute mile.  Maybe.  For the past couple of months, I’ve been jogging on streets, trails, and tracks, and usually I don’t keep track of how far or how fast I run.  It was just a few weeks ago that I got excited because I ran three laps around the track–and they weren’t even consecutive.

Imagine my surprise at the gym yesterday when I ran a mile in 13:40.  I know that’s not impressive to many (most?  all?) of you, but I was pleasantly surprised.  I only did 1.5 miles on the treadmill before I called it a day.

Which brings up a few questions.  How do people run, like, 5 miles without passing out or sweating to death?  Is it more important to focus on how your body is feeling, or whether you reach a certain distance or speed?  How do you ignore the darn numbers on the treadmill?  (‘Cause when I see it approaching a certain “mile”stone, my mind wants to reach it, then give up for the day.)  How do you fight treadmill tedium?

Slim Gym

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I’ve been thinking about joining a gym for about two months now, but I tried to wait until I was further into my new lifestyle and further into the colder weather.  Today was just one rainy, cloudy, cool day too many.  I caved and joined the gym.  I chose Average Joe’s which is the cheapest, most basic option closest to my home.

I hopped onto the treadmill first thing.  It had been a while since I really jogged on one.  For the first time, it felt really easy to run on a treadmill.  I warmed up a bit, then ran almost a full mile before going into cool-down mode.  I didn’t want to overdo it at the gym on the first day, and I still wanted to hit the weight machines.  I kept it easy on the weight machines, too, only doing about 10 reps per machine and only up to 30 pounds.  Nevertheless, my left arm felt a little sore before I left–hopefully I’ll be able to lift it tomorrow!

Do you belong to a gym?  What do you like most about it?

When Pigs Run

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I am not a runner.  Not exactly.  I’ve never really been able to run.  In the past, during brief spurts of fitness, I was able to stick to a routine on a treadmill.  For one brief shining moment (it lasted all of a day), I actually ran a mile on the treadmill.  And.  Never.  Did.  It.  Again.

Time has passed, the weight has returned, and my muscles have all but disappeared.  As part of my new healthy lifestyle, I decided to give jogging a try again.  This time, I don’t have a treadmill, so I’ve been huffing & puffing on streets, trails, and tracks.  Jeez louise, roads are much harder than the treadmill.  At first, I was just walking.  I added about, oh, 20 seconds of jogging to each day’s workout.  Gradually, I increased my time.  I haven’t really been keeping track of how long or how fast I jog.  I don’t even know how long the trails are at the parks.  I was just glad I could jog at all.

Thanks to the recent crappy weather and local flooding, I’ve been spending more time at the track and I can’t help but keep track (sorry, pun intended) of my mileage.  Four laps around the track equals 1 mile.  Two weeks ago, I couldn’t even jog halfway around the track.  Once.  Halfway.  That’s 1/8 of a mile.  For some people, that’s the length of their driveway.  I felt discouraged, thinking I would never be able to get my fat a** all the way around the track and never be able to run a mile.  When pigs fly, I thought–or run.

And run they did.  On Wednesday, I ran a whole lap around the track.  I know that’s not a whole lot, but it was a lot to me!  For the first time, I felt like I could actually do it, and I didn’t feel like death warmed over.  I wasn’t able to repeat my performance on Wednesday, but I was happy I did it at all.  I didn’t get my hopes up that I’d be able to repeat it.

But I did!  This evening, I jogged three laps around the track!  Okay, okay, so they weren’t in a row, but it’s a start!  Here’s what I did:

     Lap 1:  brisk walk
     Lap 2:  jog
     Lap 3:  brisk walk
     Lap 4:  jog
     Lap 5:  brisk walk
     Lap 6:  jog
     Lap 7:  cool-down stroll

That last jogged lap was a challenge.  As I rounded the final curve, I was pumping my fists–as if boxing the air would make my legs keep going.  I guess it worked, because I did it!  It didn’t even bother me that a man twice my age passed me–more than once.

I’m hoping that in my next “run,” I’ll be able to jog four laps for a whole mile.  Okay, so it won’t be all in a row, but it still counts, right?