Thursday, May 05, 2011

Walking and Running

I have been so busy lately that not only have I not been blogging, I haven't been exercising either. (Lots of negatives in that sentence.)

It dawned on me today that I am entered in a 3-mile race June 5, and I will need to run (yes, run) at least 1 mile nonstop before that date. Because it is an obstacle course, I don't think running farther than 1 mile will be necessary because we will be stopping to climb walls, crawl through mud and leap over fire. (

At the same time, I'm thinking about entering a judged racewalk later this month. The track and field event includes 1500 and 5000 meter races. Running and proper racewalking form do not necessarily go together. (I know lots of racewalkers run, but probably not when they are working on form.)

Add in the fact that it did not rain today -- which lately is a big deal. With all of that in mind, I went to Antrim Park to get in a few laps. My plan was to do three laps -- two racewalking, one running.

I started the first lap slow because I was feeling a little bit stiff. As soon as I warmed up, I picked up the pace, though my heart rate was not going as high as I would like. The second lap, I picked up the pace more, but my heart rate still did not go as high as I would like. I finished in 17:05 and 16:32.

I started running the moment I began the third lap. Unfortunately for me, I planned poorly. The direction I picked to go included the only uphill on the entire loop! When you have no endurance for running, even a small hill like this can be very challenging. I did a run/walk, but I didn't time the intervals. I just ran as far as I could until I got tired, rested, then ran some more. The first few running intervals were pretty tough and short, but the more intervals I did, the longer they got! Near the end I felt my endurance was really improving. I completed that lap in 14:32 and my heart rate got up to 168!

And though running is still pretty difficult for me, and I know I will never be a real runner, it is getting easier.

So, today was an especially good day. The sun was shining, I was at a beautiful park, I finished over 3 miles and feel that I got some really good cardio exercise. And my endurance is improving.

Pace per mile: First lap 14:14, second lap 13:46 and my final jogging lap was 12:06. You may remember I was walking faster than that more than a week ago.

I felt so good after this workout, I had fresh veggies and hummus for dinner.

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