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Anyone have advice on learning to run?


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Thank you for the encouragement, becs.  When I read it on Friday, I was definitely in need of it.  I also improvised based on your suggestion.  I have worn a FitBit for years, and more than a year ago set it up with my walking and running stride lengths based on a quarter-mile walk and run.  So I decided that it's likely to be far more accurate than the app.  I took it, the app, and DH to one of the local high school tracks, and we ran there today. 

The goal was 5.5 miles.  My plan was to run in Lane 1 for 22 laps.  I managed it for four laps, and then a boys' track team showed up and wanted those lanes.  So I moved to lane 7.  Luckily, I had also planned to pay attention to when I got to 10,000 steps, which is close to 5 miles for me when I'm walking, and then do two laps more.  I started the run on the app and the timer at the same time so that I could find out how much they differ.  Going 10,000 steps plus two laps measured 5.5 miles on my FitBit.  The app said I had run 7.46 miles.  So obviously, the app miles pretty much suck.  Now that I know that, I can just use my FitBit and record the runs manually in the app.  That will actually make my life easier, because I won't have to carry my iPod while I'm running.

So.  Today's run:  5.5 miles.  59:52, for a (much more reasonable and far less awesome) pace of 10:52 per mile. 


ThyPeace, DH did 6.5 miles and is absolutely exhausted.  He doesn't run during the week (he does other exercise) and I think maybe we've found his current stamina limit.  I'm thinking marathon training.  I think he's hoping I'll stick to 5 miles and under.  And he just comments, "I've never run that far before...."  Go him!!  And right.  Time for bed for us!

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Well, it's Thursday.  This week's runs were a 2.25 recovery run on Tuesday and 3x1000m today.  Both felt fine, though my legs were still tired and my quads still actively sore.  Tomorrow is a rest day.  Saturday is 5.75 miles and Sunday is 6.25 miles.  Not sure what the point of the back-to-back long (for me) distances is for the overall workout plan.  For me, it's an opportunity to think really carefully about running while conserving energy.  I'll be incorporating walking into both runs, and will aim for no more than a 12 minute mile on Saturday.  Sunday I'll start slow and see how I finish.

Not sure that DH will join me for both of them.  Given how tired he was last week, I hope he gives his body a little more rest than he did last weekend, but we'll see.  He generally feels that it's important to be able to keep up with me.  And on that note, even though it's only 8:30pm, time for bed!

ThyPeace, because, you know, rest.

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Some tidbits from the weekend.  Beware, there's lots of typing ahead.


Saturday morning, DH and I were out the door by 7am.  We had 5.75 miles to try to do, but only made it to 5.4 miles before having to stop to go on with the day.  Nonetheless, it felt like a pretty good run.  It was cold -- 42 degrees -- and I remain really happy with my new Nike tights and jacket. Only my fingertips were ever cold. Because I knew I had a long run the next day, I also implemented walk breaks approximately every mile. I will admit that I timed the first walk to coincide with a painfully steep hill that I really struggle with. I swear, that alone gave me the stamina to run another mile. That hill kills me. (Yeah, that probably means I should do it more. Humbug.)  We did learn that running down the steep hill near our house is a bad idea for DH's knee. He, of course, did not mention it until long after the run was over and he was icing his knee, but hey. At least I got the info eventually. (He's particularly quiet about injuries...) I felt pretty good afterward. Not particularly sore, not particularly tired.... or so I thought, until the two hour nap later that day. 


Sunday,  we had to be out of the house by 10:15am instead of 8:30am, so getting all the miles in was much easier.  We ran, with walk breaks, for 1:15, which my FitBit said was 6.8 miles.  I was not convinced of that, but went with it since I knew it was more accurate than the Nike app.  The weather was lovely, so no jacket. I wore a long sleeve shirt for two miles, and after that, just t-shirt, tights, and shorts. Even that was starting to be too warm by the end of the run. This run, for all that the weather was gorgeous, was a lot harder. I should have planned a walk break sooner than I did, and should also have started out slower. I felt so good when I started that I did not consider how quickly the energy would disappear and be replaced by aching muscles.  The end of that run was not a whole lot of fun, but I made it to what the FitBit said was 6.8 miles. DH came along the whole way, though I suggested a couple of times that he should do less.  I did learn a bit about how to take strain off my quads, which were really complaining a lot.


The physical results of the weekend are that DH had his usual swelling of the knee and Achilles tendon, and I have sore muscles in my quads and in various places around my ankles and feet. 


The mental results are that I can do it.  DH is, he tells me, at his limit of ability.  That leads him to worry about me training further, because he wants to do it with me.  For me, the emotional result is continuing to build confidence that I can run just about any distance I set my mind to, though it may take a lot of time to build up to it.  (Though when I looked at the half marathon distances in the Nike training app, I was a little stunned...)  For DH, well, I think he is not nearly as confident because of the limitations his knee imposes.  I worry about that; I don't want him to get hurt, and I also don't want him to feel as though I am doing something that he wants to do and can't.  That's a tough one.


The technology results of the weekend are that my FitBit appears to measure about 10% too high as compared to MapMyRun, which I assume is actually accurate since I can map on roads.  So I actually ran 6 miles, rather than the 6.8 the FitBit measured.  After thinking about it a bit, I checked my stride length by dividing the 6 miles by 11,811 steps.  That came out to 32.2 inches, and I had 36 inches in the settings (which I had measured a good long while ago, before I shortened my stride to keep the tendons behind my knees from aching).  I'm hoping that adjustment will get my FitBit distances closer to right.  I think part of the problem with the Nike app was that it was receiving both FitBit data and the data from the iPod internal accelerometer, effectively doubling my pace.  Not sure of that, but once I made it stop taking FitBit data, the distances got slightly more accurate, anyway.



Later on Sunday, we ended up in the area of the Marine Corps Marathon festivities.  At one point, we had a view of about a half mile of the course.  It was around mile 20, and about 12:45pm, so 3-4 hours after the participants would have started.  Almost everyone was walking.  It looked very crowded, and I can't really figure out how those who were still running were managing to make headway, though there were plenty of people available to pass.  A neighbor of mine ran, which I didn't know until after the race. He was disappointed with his 4:19 time because he'd been hoping to finish under 4 hours. His wife said he'd started off too fast and then fell apart after 20 miles, so perhaps I was seeing that happen to several hundred (or thousand, I don't know) people all at once.  A colleague also ran; I talked to him about it on Friday.  He started running in 2009 and did his first marathon in 2015. Now he runs at least a marathon every weekend (!) and his "long" runs are 50k and 100k ultras. He thinks I should go running with him and definitely should run the MCM next year. I can barely stand to run with DH, so have politely declined to go running with him. As for the MCM, well, he is not convincing me that it's an everyman's race, that's for sure.  But he's one of several who've suggested I should try it.


I don't know.


That really is the problem, isn't it? What to do next? After all, I finished my 8 week running program yesterday. Two months ago, that 5k left me wiped out for the day.  Now, I can run something like 5 miles in a row and then go on with my day.  I think a lot of that is cooler temperatures and not-so-great accuracy in miles. Even so. I think I have become a little bit better runner, too.


So what to do next?  Sigh.  I dunno.  But there is a half-marathon training program plugged into my iPod.  Tomorrow I'll go for the first run.  I'll worry about where it leads in six weeks or so, when the distances get back to what I did yesterday.  In the meantime, I'll focus on form and maybe a little speed.  There are a whole bunch of 6x200 workouts in the next few weeks.  Probably I'll go talk to that incredibly annoying hill for some of them.


ThyPeace, still learning to run.

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Second morning of newly calibrated running. MapMyRun says the route was 1.98 miles, while my FitBit says it was 2 miles. Much closer. Either way, it took me 25 minutes. So now I know that really, I am a very very slow runner. No one, particularly me, should be surprised by that. I did really hope that I was doing better. Better to know the truth though.

ThyPeace, still hopes to speed up some eventually.

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Well... bother.  Something still isn't right.  This morning I had a "ten minute tempo run" assignment from the Nike Run Club app.  I still don't exactly know what those are, but generally go with "run faster than you're comfortable running and do it in a way that you can finish the run at the same pace you started."  DH wanted to go to the track, as his knee has been bothering him and the track surface is easier on him than pavement.  So off we went.

I walked around the track once, then started running and started my timer.  I ran what I was sure was 4 laps, and DH and DD verified that it was.  It took me 10:36 in lane 5 of the track, which this useful web site tells me is 1.06 miles:


(We know the track length and such from Google, which is a best friend for such factoids.)

So according to the distance that I can figure out from that and the time that I'm sure is correct, I ran at a 10 minute mile pace.  I can't see any way that that's more than a few seconds off, and I know the distance is correct. 

But.... my FitBit says I ran 0.82 miles in that time at a 12:56 pace.

So I then went back and looked at my Friday morning run, which was about at a 12 minute mile pace according to the FitBit.  When I routed the run in MapMyRun, though, it turned out to be a good bit longer than the FitBit said -- and my pace was naturally faster when I re-calculated. 

I guess what I am learning is that my stride varies depending on how fast I'm running.  (And I'm guessing most experienced runners would be smacking their foreheads and saying something like, "Duh!" at this point.)  For the next week, while my running program is time rather than distance, I'll just map out the distance after I'm done.  I guess I'll have to map things out beforehand for the measured distance runs.  Or go to the track and run in circles, but really?  That is mighty dull when you have an hour to do.


ThyPeace, notes that the run on Friday felt crummy, and today's run was much better.

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Monday's run was a 25 minute timed run. I did 2.25 miles for a pace of 11:14. Slower than Sunday, which I believe. Sunday was about as fast as I can run for any distance at all. Tomorrow I do a "speed" workout of 5x400m. I will not be going to the track, so it'll all happen on my usual running routes. DH and I worked out about what 400m is last time I was working on this stuff so I'll run that distance. And in a fit of "you can't do that," NRC has reduced all my running distances and they want all my "recovery runs" to be at an 18 minute mile pace, which is a walk for me.

ThyPeace, going to ignore the walking part.
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I should mention that the combination of continuing my Whole30 journey, losing another 15 pounds (for a total of more than 30), and starting to run has had some really nice benefits to my blood chemistry.  In the last year (I started running just under a year ago), here are the changes:

2016 results (2015 results in parentheses):

  • Lost 15 pounds (10)
  • Blood sugar 91 (98)
  • A1C 5.5 (5.7)
  • Triglycerides 57 (96)
  • Total cholesterol 168 (170)
  • HDL cholesterol 51 (46)
  • LDL cholesterol 101 (105)

Even the 2015 results were far, far better than previous years, so more improvement made me really happy.  The doctor said I was the easiest patient she had all day, and that she had no advice except to keep doing what I'm doing.  Sounds good to me!

ThyPeace, just back from a short, easy run on the coldest morning of the year so far.  Thank goodness for the new cold-weather clothes I got!

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Went for a couple of three mile runs yesterday and today.  The 35 minutes it takes has started to feel like just a workout.  Not like torture or like I'm going to fall over dead as it did for a long time.  Just a workout.  Today, I got distracted thinking about work while I was running and completely missed my turn at one point.  I've never done that while I was running before.  Swimming and biking yes, but not running.  I suppose it's a milestone of some kind.

ThyPeace, ran before the temperature dropped 30 degrees. 

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  • 2 weeks later...


So... the weather has changed. I'm warm enough when I'm running, but what about the REST of the time? DH and I have both lost weight -- 15 pounds for me, 20 pounds for him -- since the last time it was cold outside, and we are both finding that we really notice our bodies struggling to generate enough heat. I have become a huge fan (okay, even more huge; I loved them before too) of hot showers, heating pads, and down comforters. And DH, who used to walk around in short sleeves in January, was wearing sweats and a sweatshirt yesterday and complaining that he couldn't get warm.

Anyone have suggestions?

ThyPeace, at least I was warm while I was running on the treadmill indoors last week (forgot my running jacket so didn't go outside to run at 30 degrees...)

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I will note that having the temperature go from 30 degrees to 60+ degrees has helped tremendously. And I suppose he and I will both re-acclimate to cold weather at some point soon. Come to think of it, I also recall the point last spring where the cold stopped hurting. I've also discovered that my hands will actually get cold to the point of turning white and getting numb or tingly some of the time. I read up on it, and it seems to be something that a few people have -- their bodies over-react to cold and shut off the little blood vessels at the extremities. The lack of blood flow is something the body does not like at all, so pain, numbness, tingling, changing colors, etc. Treatment is simple: Wear gloves and put them on before you go out into the cold. And various other things for making sure the body has external heat sources.

In running news, Wednesday was a short 6x200 day. I ran a mile to warm up and then did those. I tried to run fast, though I have a sense that "fast" in my world is "slow" in most other worlds. That's okay. Anyway, yesterday was 4.25 miles, which I did at a pace of just over 12 minute miles. When I ran on the treadmill last week, I set it for 5 mph. That gave me a better sense for how those feel. I am able to sustain that speed fairly well. I'd like to get access to a treadmill again in a month and see if I can sustain 5.5 mph. I increased the speed to that a couple of times on the treadmill and could sort of sustain it, but I was working pretty hard.

Anyway, the run yesterday felt surprisingly good. I hadn't had a long run in a week, and kind of missed it. Weird to miss something I used to think was torture. And even now, I'm still a little afraid of the longer runs. 4.25 miles isn't so bad. When I get to 5 miles, there's a definite psychological barrier. I'm thinking of running an 8k "fun" race on December 11, though. So that'll be how I psych myself up for that distance.

There are a lot of days when I wish for more consistency than my current running program has. I'd really like to run half an hour on Tuesday, 45 minutes on Thursday, and an hour on Saturday. On Monday, Wendesday, and Friday, I'd like to do strength and conditioning workouts. I wish the Nike training apps would let me set parameters like that, and then vary the workouts within those parameters.

ThyPeace, a human of routines.
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Yesterday was a 2.75 mile run, long enough that I try to run slowly so I won't be dead by the end. I couldn't do it yesterday -- my feet kept picking up the pace. And at the end, I felt fine. I guess all these rest days are helpful. Overall pace was just under a 12 minute mile, so faster than last week's long run. Then again, it was also a lot shorter. This week's long run is supposed to be 5.25 miles. I am planning to run an 8k race instead. Which I intend to run just as slowly as if it were a regular run, but there will be other people around.

Or I'll just run by myself. Depends on when I wake up.

ThyPeace, it's a low key race that you can only sign up for the hour before the race.
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1.25 miles today. It felt like about 4 miles because I wasn't finished digesting something that really needed to be digested. I feel better now. Hopefully tomorrow will be an easier run.

ThyPeace, needs to stop eating holiday foods.
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Yesterday was supposed to be a 5.25 mile long run. It was cold -- below 30 degrees. So... DH and I ran an 8k "low key" race. The timing process was different than the last race I did. This one had a mass start, so if you were at the back, you waited for a bit before actually getting going. It took a long time to get warm. The first mile was just working on building up some heat -- by the middle of the second mile, I felt like I wasn't going to freeze to death. My hands finally got warm at the 2 mile mark. After that, it was a matter of just running. I had to think carefully about which muscles I was using. I kept finding myself using my upper legs instead of my lower legs, and having to push the work back down into my calves and feet instead of my quads and hamstrings. My hip and glute muscles were even getting tired by the end.

There was a guy ahead of me for almost the whole race who ran just a tiny bit slower than me. He had a funny bend to one of his legs, like he'd been injured at some point. He was also, quite obviously, a far more experienced runner than me. He started out a good quarter mile ahead, and I just focused on trying to slowly close the gap. It worked for a long time, but then he sped up in the last mile. I thanked him afterward for keeping me going. He is a longtime runner and said that years ago, if you wanted to keep up with him, you had to run a 6 to 6:30 mile in that last mile. Now, he said, he just does it for the fun of it.

So anyway, DH ran the race in 45:49 and I ran it in 55:20. There were about 250 participants. DH was 160th and I was 222nd. I am, yes, a very slow runner. What surprised me, to be honest, was that there were actually people behind me who looked like they were in good shape and pretty good runners. Then again, they were chattering the entire time. I did not have the air for chatter. My best guess is that they were marathoners who can keep doing it for dozens more miles. But hey! If I did that 2 1/2 more times, approximately, it would be a half marathon!

Today DH says his knees and Achilles are stiff. He remains worried about being able to do a half marathon with me if I decide I want to. I finally mentioned that people who run that far often have support teams who don't run. Maybe that will help.... except that he's competitive. He'll want to run. As for me, my lower legs and feet are a little sore, but not too bad. I could have run somewhat farther, I think, but probably not twice the distance. More stamina building needed, I'd say.

And my real feelings? Something like this: OH MY GOSH I RAN FIVE MILES ....... AND IT TOOK LESS THAN AN HOUR!!!! How cool is that?!?!

ThyPeace, quietly totally psyched.

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  • 3 weeks later...

It's been a while since my last update.  Funny to read that one, actually.  Since then, there have been two long runs, each more than 5 miles.  The first was 5.75 miles, the second was 6.25 miles.  And various shorter runs in between.  I was absolutely exhausted by the time I got to the end of the 6.25 mile run.  Luckily, DH joined me for the last mile or so.  Amazing how much of a difference that made.  Suddenly all the parts that were in agony just didn't hurt as much.  He was my hero that night, let me tell you.  It was also my very first evening run -- I ran then because it was the warmest moment available, and when it's this cold, I'll take an oddly timed run if it means being a little warmer.  I could barely move that night, and my quads were absolutely shot.  I don't know what it is in my form that works my quads so hard.  I need to figure that out.  And for that I probably need a coach.  Sigh.  Having a hard time figuring out that whole "coach" thing, but I'll keep trying.

And I pushed too hard on those runs.  The combination of the last long run, traveling the next day, not enough sleep, and eating holiday foods (festive-not-healthy) has left me with a cold and fever.  The carrier of the germs appears to have been my 2 year old nephew, and it may be that I would have gotten sick anyway since he was drooling on me at one point.  But I think the body had less chance of fighting it off than usual because of all the other factors.

I've already missed one run and may miss tomorrow as well.  So my next "long" run is not going to be a mileage increase.  Instead, if I feel up to it, I'll do a 5k on Sunday.  

And then, back to the "I need a coach" thing.  I finally gave up on the Nike Run Club program because it was so freaking glitchy.  I need to find a program, preferably one I can work on with a human being, that will do what I need.  I need strength AND running.  And credit for every workout.


ThyPeace, ran steadily for an hour and 12 minutes that night.  That's a long time to run.  Twice around our campus, no less.  Even if I can't do it again right now, having done it at all is still really cool.

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I ran the 5K on Sunday in spite of being sick.  It may or may not have been a good idea.  My time was 33:55.  When I ran a 5k in August, my time was 36:21.  So now I am almost 2.5 minutes, or 9%, faster than I was in August.  Go figure.  The other thing that I find interesting is that it's not breath or heart rate that's limiting me.  I am breathing fine and my heart isn't pounding out of my chest most of the time.  (Okay, in this last race, there was one point where my congestion got me and I had to walk because I was wheezing.  It may be that I should have stayed in bed that morning.)  I'm just breathing at what feels to me like an easy pace.  Far easier than when I was a swimmer, for example; I know what working for every breath feels like.

It's the muscles in my legs that just can't perform any better than they are now.  I can't push them any harder than they are working right now.  Guess I'll just keep running.

ThyPeace, will update on the whole running plan soon, but has to go to a meeting now.

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As promised, here is an update on the running plan.  Actually, the workout plan in general; it's more than running.  I had gotten pretty frustrated with the Nike Run Club workout plan; it kept shifting around the days of my long runs, and there are some days when I just don't have time for them.  Mondays and Tuesdays, to be specific.  In any case, I chucked the plan.  There are goods and bads with chucking it.  The good is that I have more control -- the bad is that I have less motivation to perform.  First, though, here's the new plan:

  • Sunday - long run (60+ minutes)
  • Monday - strength workout (45 minutes)
  • Tuesday - short run (30 minutes) -- I'll turn this into a hills or speed workout after a month on the plan.
  • Wednesday - strength workout (30 minutes)
  • Thursday - medium run (45 minutes)
  • Friday - yoga/mobility/stretching workout (30-45 minutes)
  • Saturday - free day

So today is Thursday, and I can attest to the good of having added fixed strength training days.  I have really lost a lot of strength since September; the running programs focused a lot on running and really little on anything else.  I want something more balanced.  I am still going to use the Nike Training Club workouts for strength.  I have started using some of the ones that include weights, though the ones that require a full gym aren't feasible for me.  Though it would be cool if I had a chin-up bar and a rowing machine and barbells at home, it's not going to happen anytime soon.  A medicine ball, kettle bells, and other hand weights, though, I can figure out.

I didn't do an hour-long run this week (ran the 5k instead), and my run on Tuesday was hampered by a sudden stomach issue.  I ended up alternately walking and running for the last half of it.  And today, well, today I walked.  With DH for 25 minutes in the early morning, then walked him to the Metro and back for another 40 minutes of walking.  Not the same as a 45 minute run, and yet plenty of work.  We were walking about as fast as I am able to walk.  I did slow down some once he headed down into the Metro and I headed home.  I feel a little guilty for not actually running, and yet I think my body needs the rest.  

This is where the control versus motivation to perform problem comes from.  I could have done the running this morning.  I wasn't so tired that I was going to hurt myself, and most of the muscles that are really sore aren't even ones that I use much when I'm running.  But when DH offered to go for a walk with me, I jumped at the chance -- and then didn't run afterward, like I usually would.  After writing this out, I decided to ask him if he wants to do that regularly, and he does.  So the new NEW plan is:  

  • Sunday - long run (60+ minutes)
  • Monday - strength workout (45 minutes)
  • Tuesday - short run (30 minutes) -- I'll turn this into a hills or speed workout after a month on the plan.
  • Wednesday - strength workout (30 minutes)
  • Thursday - walk with DH
  • Friday - medium run (45 minutes)
  • Saturday - yoga/mobility/stretching workout (30-45 minutes)

Saturdays are sometimes really busy, but hopefully I can still do some yoga.  

Any suggestions for changes are more than welcome.

ThyPeace, if I don't run tomorrow, we know something's up.  Oh wait.  It's supposed to snow tomorrow.  Ah, the best laid plans!


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Well, I'm doing the new plan, I think.  The end of last week was a bit rearranged, but I got workouts in as much as I needed to and did my long run.  5.75 miles in something like 1:15.  I found myself walking a lot on that run and on the run this morning.  Last night when I went to sleep, after the 45 minute strength workout, my entire body was shaking with exhaustion.  So I think I am maxing out the level of work that I can do right now.  And sure 'nuf, I've lost quite a bit of strength just like I thought I had.  So okay, I know how to build strength far better than I know how to run.  This part I can do.  And from now on, no running plans that make me weak.  This may interfere with me becoming a marathon runner, but that's okay.  I'm pretty sure I'm not built that way, and I bet I can haul muscle for 13 miles even if I can't for 26.  (<== Sheer bravado talking, there.  I can't haul myself 13 miles at this point no matter what I'm made of!)

As I was doing the 5.75 mile run-with-walking-breaks, I was first ranting at myself for being a slacker, telling myself that I have been doing runs this long and what exactly is the problem anyway?  The good thing about running for a while is that other information eventually filters in.  And now that I have my run log, here's what I can say about distances more than 5 miles:

10/29/16:  5.4 miles (but this is when I was using my FitBit and overestimating by 10%, so really more like 4.86 miles) 1:01 Run/walk

10/30/16:  6.3 miles (also overestimated, so more like 5.67 miles), 1:17, 13'35" Run/walk

12/11/16: 4.98 miles (I know this is accurate; it was an 8k race), 55:21, 11'07"

12/18/16: 5.8 miles, 1:09, 12'01"

12/21/16:  6.25 miles, 1:13, 11'40"

1/8/16:  5.75 miles, 1:19, 13'48" Run/walk


Okay.  I've run more than five miles five times in my life.  Three times I ran, twice I ran/walked.  You know, self, be a little easier on yourself.  You may have additional learning to do.  So okay, fair.  I have more to learn about consistently being able to run that far without stopping.  I already know that cold (wind chill in single digits) hurts enough to make me walk.  And I know that running with someone (races, with DH) makes me more likely to keep running.  I also know that the run on 12/21 was so exhausting and painful that I almost didn't run again at all for two weeks, and that the run on 1/8 was a compromise with myself -- "Go out.  See what you feel like.  Do what's fun.  You'll be okay."  Not "Go.  Conquer.  At all costs."  

I came home thinking I need to learn how to run 5 easy miles, because right now I can't both run and make it easy for that distance.  It's one or the other.  So just like I did when I was trying to learn to run a mile, I have to keep working at it.  I did something right, because I was able to function the rest of the day on Sunday.  On 12/21, not so much.  In fact, on 12/21, I couldn't function for about four days.  So the goal of running for 60+ minutes every week seems like a good one.  Once I can actually consistently run that whole time, then I'll think about longer distances again.


ThyPeace, walked a LOT this morning.  The pace was well over 14 minutes a mile.

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For various reasons, I ran today and only had 30 minutes to do it in.  I have also made a change to my shoes (bought new ones, slightly different size) but did not replace the inserts I had been using.  I noticed during and after my long run on Sunday that my right foot was really starting to hurt right where my forefoot hits the pavement.  That contributed to the walk breaks somewhat, and I noticed the same thing on Tuesday.  So this morning I tried an experiment and took the inserts out of my shoes.  Knowing it was going to be short and that I wasn't sure how it was going to go, I decided to stay close to home.  And close to home means... hills.

So I did my first-ever hills workout.  I have no idea what I'm actually doing, you understand.  But hey, I read that hills are a good idea, and I have hills aplenty near my house.  I walked down to the hill I was thinking about, which is actually a low point on the local trail.  In one direction, according to MapMyRun, is .25 miles of hill with grades that go like this: -3%, 7%, 4%, 0%, 6%, 3%, 7%, 10%, 10%, 0%.  In the other direction is a .13 mile hill that goes like this:  11%, 13%, 3%, 4%, 5%, 4%, 8%, 4%, 1%.  The Interweb tells me, now that I look at it today, that some of those higher percentages are a little crazy for running.  That's okay, they don't last that long.  I ran them, walked part way when I needed to, and on the way down started out walking and ended up doing an easy job.  Let's see... three times on the short hill, twice up and once down the long hill, and then finished with another .3 miles of mostly flat and slight downhills, with another 7% hill at the end.  So that's a total of 8 or 10 runs of something around a minute, with walking and jogging in between.  It felt pretty good.  Honestly, I could maybe have kicked the effort up a notch.  And again, that's the lazy part of not being on someone else's plan.  I didn't kick it up a notch.  But I DID it.

I came home with feet that didn't hurt.  That's interesting because I have worn those inserts to support my feet after going to the awesome running store and getting professional help.  Their summary of the problem was that my feet and ankles were just not strong enough to keep my running form correct.  I think this means that my feet and ankles have gotten stronger.  I'm withholding judgement some until I see how they feel tomorrow, but I do think it's a positive sign.

Maybe tomorrow for the 45 minute run I was supposed to do, though I walked with DH partway to the train, so the total minutes moving ended up being about 45, just not all running.  Saturday is supposed to be an icy mess; hope it melts so that I can do my 60+ minutes on Sunday.  

ThyPeace, working on learning to go with the flow a little more.

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Well, I walked with DH this morning instead, both before our shower and then with him all the way to the train and back home again.  The total was about 55 minutes of walking.  It's not running.  And it's not nothing.  And I like being able to chat with him.  

Which goes back to the whole idea of an "easy" run.  I can't do that when I'm running on level group or uphill.  I simply cannot both run and converse.  The looooooong hill (which I run going downhill) on the run around campus?  I can converse while I do that.  Just not anywhere else.  So I can imagine I'll eventually be able to do it if I work hard and long enough.  Hilarious, actually, to think that I need to work hard to be able to take it easy on something.  Ah well, that's pretty much how life is overall.

In any case, the feet do not hurt today, so I am not going to add the inserts back to my shoes.  No running tomorrw; it may be icy and I have a yoga/strength workout scheduled.  Long run on Sunday when it'll be cold again.

ThyPeace, or run-walk, or something.

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Thanks, mzleebez!  I will definitely keep it in mind.  My goal is to run a 5k when I'm 100, and if it ends up being a run-walk, I think I'll be okay with it.

I decided to add another goal.  If Ruth Bader Ginsberg can do pushups at 85, then I want to do them when I'm 85, too.  That's going to take some focused work, that's for sure!

Run update:  4.9 miles in an hour on Sunday, 2.65 miles in 30 minutes today.  Freaking killer strength workout in between.  My legs are shot right now.  May have to do the yoga tomorrow instead of Friday!

ThyPeace, feeling pretty good; eating Whole30 has finally kicked back in.

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@ThyPeace this thread is exactly what I needed.

I started another whole 30 on jan 9th (my 4th or 5th one... Not really sure) but I feel off the wagon big time in the past two months with my eating and exercise... and I SUFFERED through the worst run I have had in recent memory.... STRUGGLE BUS the whole way... I am on day 11, hoping my body turns the corner soon, so I can get back on the training....reading through your posts has helped me out alot.... I keep hoping that the extra 15-20 pounds I gained since my last race in Oct 2016 will melt away in these 11 days, but no such luck....

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Just found and read through this entire thread! I got worried in the middle that you might have stopped posting somewhere along the way, but so happy to see you are still going!

Like many who have commented, I would also like to get "back into running." Not that I claim to have ever really loved it, but I dragged myself for a few half marathons several years ago - and I firmly believe you could do one!

In your first post you said, "I've worked up to the point where I can alternate running and walking for 3 miles in about 38 minutes." Less than 10 days ago, you said, " Okay.  I've run more than five miles five times in my life.  Three times I ran, twice I ran/walked. " And you are doing this in the winter! Just wanted to remind you that you are making awesome progress! And willingly doing Hill Workouts!

Thanks for sharing; I am inspired!

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Hi @MadscienceM, glad to help out!  Since I started Whole30 before I started running, I don't know what it's like to run without Whole30.  On Sunday, I ran 5.3 miles without bothering to eat anything first -- I normally skip food before workouts, and though the Whole30 template says to eat before a workout, I find that I function just as well or better without it.  And in fact, on Friday and yesterday I didn't eat anything until early to mid afternoon without any negative effects.  I was very hungry once I did eat, and was happy to do so, but I think my body has adjusted well to fat burning.  

As for melting off the weight, I can attest to the fact that running doesn't do that.  It's just running, and you're sure to increase your food intake to accommodate the exercise.  It's just also incredibly good for you.  

@ABW, wow, thanks for reading the whole thread.  I am continuing to post here mostly to document my progress, and thank you for pointing out that there is indeed progress!  It feels so painfully slow sometimes!  Oh wait, that's because it is both painful AND slow!  But also fun and worth it.

ThyPeace, will post an update from the last few days this evening, I hope.

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Warm up five minutes. Start every running workout with five minutes of walking to prepare your body for the demands of running. ...
  1. Run and walk by your body.
  2. Stick with 20 minutes. ...
  3. Finish happy. ...
  4. Be the tortoise, not the hare. ...
  5. Finish with a five-minute cooldown. ...
  6. Run to infinity and beyond!

I'm going do this, too.

Ima said that awhile back. Moi. I can't run anywhere, the snowdrifts are 6-8 feet deep and the only place I'm running is to the window. Waiting for a Chinook.   

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