Something New – Week 4, Day 1
A new week. Running is becoming more and more painful. But… only the first 4 minutes or so. If I focus on other things, like TV shows playing on the TV in the gym, time tends to flow by faster.
I did my 8 minutes, and I liked it in the end. It really feels great when I wrap up my workout. Two minutes of warm-up, about 4 minutes of cool-down, and your typical 8 minutes of running. Just plain running.
I’ve noticed that if I drink alcohol the previous night, my run is a bit more painful. I don’t know if it’s hydration related, or not, but I’m definitely noticing it. I’m going to continue to experiment. I would like to optimize my runs eventually, but I won’t know what works for me, or doesn’t until I try it out.
Hunger is not a problem
I don’t seem to be hungry. At least not yet. I don’t want to lose that one pleasure in life. I love to eat. I’m a foodie. Heck, I even make my own bread from scratch. I haven’t changed my eating habits yet. I would like to first get to my 30 minute run before I optimize anything else. Hey, the way I see it is that if I can run 30 minutes, I can only get better at running 30 minutes after I reach that point.
Staying properly hydrated, eating better, speeding up, form, and all those other things can come in time once I’ve reached my optimal time. The way I see it, that’s just a milestone in the process to run my 30 minutes optimally.
A new friend
There’s this girl I saw at the gym two days in a row. I like that she watches TV while she uses the elliptical. I enjoy the company, but she doesn’t say much. We are both wearing headphones after all.
Week 4, day 2
Running got better. It’s starting to feel more like a casual jog again. I ran a bit over the 8:10 mark. More like 8:40. But this is good. I’m on my mark, and still going at it surprisingly.
Something wonderfully strange
When I took a shower, I noticed something. Harder muscles. I think my body is going through some metabolic changes. I’m noticing my muscles hardening all over. I guess this is what they call toning up.
Let’s just say that my wife really, really enjoys all of the stamina I gained from all this running. If it makes her happier, that’s just more motivation for me to keep going.
Thirty Week Challenge
I’m noticing that I’m no longer counting calories when I run. I just run. The more I do it, the less I pay attention to “how will I feel when I run x minutes”. By now I’m fairly confident that I can do this.
I suppose that most people will be satisfied with running 15 minutes a day. That’s still a lot of minutes, and if they just focus on that, they could technically start increasing speed and focus on form earlier on. Considering that a doctor once recommended 10 minute run a day is healthy, 15 minutes is already above that. Plus, you can make it a 10 week challenge, I suppose. That’s only 2.5 months. Great for bikini season. But, personally, I’ll stick to the 30 minute challenge because I know I’ve done it before.
My new “gym friend” didn’t show up today. Maybe she was done with her challenge. Or maybe we just go working out at different times. No matter, I still have my music to listen to. And it always gets me motivated to run more and more. Gotta put in those extra sprints.
Week 4, Day 3 (3/10/2016)
I was definitely feeling it today when I started off. I ate too much for dinner. Wife made some really good battered chicken and mashed potatoes. Mm delicious. From now on, I will think twice about eating extra before running.
Plus, I need to go to sleep earlier. The pain wasn’t as bad as other days, but the breathing definitely sucked. Pun intended. Plus, I had a drink with the wife last night… because we like to socialize like that.
I noticed that every time I yawn, my heart rate goes up by about 3-4 beats per minute. It makes me think that yawning is drawn by some process to increase your heart rate to pump more blood. This makes sense especially while running.
Week 4, Day 4 (3/11/2016)
No pain today. I noticed that since I haven’t had a single drink last night, today was a no pain kind of day. So, because I didn’t have any pain, I figured I’d try something new. I tried running 6 mph which makes my pace at a 10 minute mile. This was a huge thing for me. I haven’t ran 10 minute miles in almost a decade.
The 10 minute mile
Yeah, it was hard to breathe, but then I remember that scene from the Matrix, “Do you think that’s air you’re breathing?” Mind over matter does wonders. My heavy breathing may be due to lack of oxygen in the body, but then again, our bodies tend to over-react, so breathing too heavy may not be necessary.
The 10 minute mile is going to be my goal for the slowest pace. If I can take an extra week to get adjusted to running a 10 minute mile, I think it’s a good idea. Yes, I know that I said that I’ll wait until I run the full 30 minutes, but why not? It just felt really good running today, even though I was really tired from breathing heavily at the end.
Only fourth week in and it feels good to run? I think I’m going crazy. Crazy for running! Ok, enough with the corniness.
The best thing I can say about my run is that I didn’t feel pain. That’s a great thing! No pain means that my body muscles are finally getting used to the torture they deserve. At the moment, I feel once again that I can really start running 10 minutes, fairly easily. My goal for this week is, obviously, to get myself up to the 9 minute mark by the end of the week so that starting next week, I can run 9 minutes comfortably. I will, of course, attempt to push myself to do the 10 minute mile runs, but no guarantees.
Until tomorrow, another new day… good night!