QuarterLife Girl Gets Fit!

Archive for November 2009

Ok, let me back up to my post a few hours ago where I said that my 5k time was almost a minute faster than last year. Well, I just checked my records and I was wrong. My time was only 7 SECONDS faster. What the hell?!!

Backing up even more, I checked my 5k time from March….it was 42:39. (Versus the 44:05 on Thursday, and 44:12 the year before that.) WHAT THE HELL?! I’ve been running so much better, why was my time so terrible?!!

Ugh, this is so frustrating. I’m just going to blame it on the fact that we were puddle hopping and move on.

[But damn, this really sucks….]

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Monday, November 23

On Monday I had scheduled yoga to be my workout, but seeing that I had skipped my Sunday stretching I decided to do that first then follow it with a workout. However the stretching is one hour long, and by the time that was over the BF was on his way to hang out. No real workout on Monday.

Tuesday, November 24

I don’t exactly remember why anymore, but I decided not to run as scheduled as Tuesday. I think I ended up baking instead.

Wednesday, November 25

It was the day before the race, and naturally, as I’d been lazy all week I decided not to run or do anything either! In my defense I was at my aunt’s house helping with the cooking in preparation for the Thanksgiving dinner!

Thursday, November 26

Thursday was race day. I woke up to the wonderful sounds of rain falling…..really hard. Great. I had heard it might rain in the morning, but I had been hoping they had been wrong. On top of that, my dreams that night all revolved around me missing the event several times. I was relieved to find out I woke up on time!

By the time I left for the race the rain had let up and was only sprinkling, but when I got off on the exit I was greeted by a VERY long line of traffic. After nervously waiting in line I got to park my car with about 5 minutes left before the start, and I still had to walk all the way to the start (they had routed me around to a farther parking lot, since the main one had filled up). Luckily they were running behind (or they were waiting for us late-comers) and I arrived with plenty of time to spare.

As for my “strategy” I figured I would just follow the Week 2 routine….90 seconds jogging, 2 minutes walking. I’d tried that in the past for a 5k but ended up wimping out. This time I can say I followed it pretty closely! I only delayed my start twice, and for a short time, and I stopped the podcast during the water breaks. I was excited about that, and I was very excited when I checked my time after passing the 1st mile marker…..13:25!!! I’m normally closer to the 14 minute mile range! Because of that I was pretty disappointed at my finish time, 44:05, or 14:13/mile. It was better than the past, and considering that I didn’t train as well as I could’ve, I honestly was expecting better. My time improved by less than a minute over previous 5k’s! Oh well, I guess it’s something more to work towards….a 14-minute mile just sounds like a pathetic goal to me.

Now that the 5k is over, I’m going to rest a bit on the running. While running a whole 5k is NOT close, it definitely seems like it’s possible. I saw how quickly I was able to progress in Week 5 of the C25k, so I want to keep pushing myself. 

As for workouts during the rest of the week….well….

 

Friday, November 27

I’m pleased to say I actually worked out the day after my 5k with Jillian Michaels! (30 Day Shred) She beat me up, of course, and I was disappointed when I couldn’t complete the cardio like I used to. I was REALLY struggling. But I did it anyway.

Saturday, November 28

Saturday was my mom’s birthday, and I spent the entire day with her….so no time for a workout!

Sunday, November 29

On Sunday I only got my dance class in. I guess the only comfort is that one run through of the dance leaves me breathless, and we ran through it quite a few times! At least I got some kind of workout in!

Monday November 30

It’s still Monday, so I obviously can’t guarantee what I’m projecting will happen today. In the evening I really want to get my stretching in (didn’t have time for that yesterday), and I’m 80% likely to call it a day after that. I’ll let you know how it went tomorrow!

Friday, November 20
Friday night I decided not to do the 30 Day Shred since I was planning on running in the morning. I didn’t want to be too sore for my run! Instead I tried the Core Secrets “Full Body Challenge”. This one was a little longer than the previous core secrets DVDs I’ve tried (44 minutes), and so far it’s been the best workout! It doesn’t get me dripping in sweat (like running, or Jillian Michaels does) but it sure had some serious ab and butt exercises. I think if I increase my weights for some of the moves I would’ve been seriously beat. That being said, I got a pretty good workout. Of the 4 Core Secrets DVD’s I’ve tried this is definitely the one I’ll be using over and over.

Saturday, November 21
Saturday was another no-exercise day. [sigh] It’s my own fault. When I woke up in the morning I still felt kinda crappy after the previous night’s workout, and I got home way too late to squeeze in a workout.

Sunday, November 22
I almost didn’t work out on Sunday in addition to my dance class. I usually go for a run after class, but I had told my mom I’d swing by their house. In addition to that, the streets around my neighborhood were full of traffic from a nearby festival, so I didn’t feel comfortable running around in that. Luckily I got the brilliant idea to swing back by the apartment to pick up my workout clothes and take it to my parents’ house where I could go for a run! I ran two miles. I would’ve kept going for the 3rd, but I’ve been starting to feel a bit of a strain in my left knee, so I want to make sure I don’t do any damage before the “race” on Thursday!

This week was a mess. I skipped a couple of workouts and I feel pretty disappointed with myself. All the same, I’m going to keep pushing towards the end of the month. It’s almost here!

Monday, November 16

After last week I decided to make yet another adjustment. I tried Week 3 of the program but at a faster speed, but that really left me beat. I’m scaling it back just a bit more so I tried out Week 1, which is intervals of 90 seconds jogging and 2 minutes walking. It went much better! I made sure to run fast/hard enough that by the end of the 90 seconds I was out of energy, and the 2 minutes walking was just enough to recover. After reading an article or two about how to increase speed it seems as though interval training is the way to go. And hopefully by the time I go back to my longer/slower intervals I’ll be able to last longer!

 Tuesday, November 17

I was supposed to do the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred on Tuesday, but in the afternoon I got a call from my mom. My sister had invited us over to her house after work. Workout out AND hanging out with them just wasn’t a possibility. I had to choose one. As you can guess I met with my mom and my sister and had a good time. It doesn’t happen every day, so I was ok with the trade off.

 Wednesday, November 18

I was supposed to run on Wednesday….but as you can guess I didn’t. I was pretty emotional at work. To sum it up, I realized there was the slight possibility of a bit of stability in the future at work, however my boss called me out on a screw-up of mine which led me to realize there is no stability for me for now. Anyway, by the time I got out of work I was a mess and spent the evening playing spider solitaire to keep me distracted (and to keep me from bursting into tears again). That is, until the BF got here. Then we watched TV.

 Thursday, November 19

Thursday was supposed to be Core Secrets, but since I’d skipped on my run on Wednesday I decided to run. Once again I used the C25k Week 1, running faster during the running intervals. I definitely feel myself getting stronger, but I still struggle. I’m a little worried about next week’s 5k! I knew I wouldn’t be at the point that running it ALL was a possibility, but I really don’t want to do it slower than last year, and it annoys me that I don’t have a “strategy”. Right now it’s just to focus on the intervals I’ve been working on, but it doesn’t feel enough.

 The race is in less than a week!! So, my training schedule is Saturday morning (I’m planning on a full 5k to get a feel for my time), Sunday evening I’m doing my Week 1 intervals at “full speed”, then Tuesday will be my last practice (Week 1 intervals)!! Should I do anything else on Wednesday night? The race is Thursday at 7:30am, so I don’t want to do anything to strain my legs. Maybe some core secrets? Or perhaps I will just relax. I can’t believe Thanksgiving is so close!

 

Friday, November 13
Thursday night the BF lent me two new Core Secrets DVD’s! I was excited to try it out, so Friday night I pulled out the first DVD: Full Body Workout (or something like that, don’t quite remember the name). It was…..ok. I got a better workout than I did from the first DVD (Ab Assault), but a few things left me feeling “off”. First of all, I felt my knee starting to act up. They had a few squat/lunge type moves and every time my left knee started to mildly protest. So that part didn’t go so well. Also, I was annoyed at the lack of guidance at times. Maybe I was just cranky from the knee issue, but I felt myself scrambling quite a bit, then noticing halfway I was doing the workout wrong. I’m going to blame that on the fact that it was the first time though. I’m sure it’ll be easier to follow along next time. (I always struggle with knowing how far up or down to get on the yoga ball….I must work on that!)

After those 25 minutes were up, I didn’t feel as though it was “enough” (silly me). I decided to check out the other DVD that came in the same case: the Accelerated workout. It was very similar. Some of the moves were tweaked, but I think in the future I’ll follow this one and not the first one I did. It was slightly more challenging. By the end of it I was definitely feeling fatigued (I should’ve eaten before starting), but both workouts in one night isn’t something I’ll be repeating in the future.

(I think my issue with some of the new DVDs I try not being “enough” comes from the fact that I’ve tried the 30 Day Shred, and that leaves me exhausted and dripping with sweat every time. I guess I now expect that from every DVD! Oops.)

Actually, I have one more Core Secrets DVD to try out, so I may be trying that one before I have a chance to repeat the Accelerated workout once more.

Saturday, November 14
I didn’t go out for my scheduled “training run” (it was supposed to be a full 5k to practice). I was supposed to meet my mom at her house at 9am, and since I didn’t feel like waking up at the crack of dawn I ran out of time in the morning for my run.

Actually, I didn’t work out at all on Saturday. [gasp!] I’m not angry with myself though. After a day of gingerbread house making (at a workshop, so much fun!), Costco shopping, and a baby shower (and wearing heels all day) I was exhausted. By the end of the day my legs were a wreck, and it didn’t occur to me to try to get in a workout. I needed a rest, particular the left knee that was giving me problems the day before and once again was hurting Saturday night. 

Sunday, November 15
I know I said dance classes weren’t going to count towards my “workout-every-day” challenge, but on Sunday once again I didn’t work out, but I wasn’t exactly inactive either! I spent the day cleaning up the apartment, folding clothes, practicing my routine for dance class, then I actually went to class and sweat up a storm. At the end of all that I was actually going to go for a run, but my dad was delivering my “hand-me-down” coffee table, so I settled for the P90X stretching. It was great, and I welcomed the rest.

So I basically took a day off this week. Technically that means I “failed” at my challenge, but screw that! I’m going to ignore it and continue to work until the end of the month!

I have unofficially decided to follow a certain structure with my workouts. (I say “unofficially” because I’m willing to be a bit flexible and deviate should the need arise, or if anyone suggests something better.) Now that I have my 30 Day Shred DVD again, I have 3 different workouts I can alternate between: running outside, Biggest Loser Weight-loss Yoga, and the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. I’m reserving the Core Secrets for morning workouts, or we’ll see how this changes when the BF gets me his more advanced CS DVD.

My biggest concern is beating up a particular area….such as my knees. When I started doing the 30 Day Shred every day my knees started to do funky things. This is what I want to avoid. If they start behaving funny I’ll take one of those out and put the Core Secrets back in or something.

Monday, November 9
Monday was odd. When I arrived home I was exhausted so I decided a nap was in order. I woke up around 7pm and really groggy, not wanting to do anything but sleep. Either way, I pulled myself together and did the Yoga video. I didn’t wimp out quite as much as last time, but I’m still not doing it 100%.

Tuesday, November 10
I was supposed to go for a run on Tuesday night, but I decided to switch things up (actually, it was just dark when I got home, so I preferred not to go running outside too late). Instead I did the yoga workout again. I did a bit better, but again, not 100%.

Wednesday, November 11
I had Wednesday off from work, so I woke up bright and early (although still much later than I would on a workday) and went for a run! Unfortunately I don’t think I woke up early enough. At 8:30 it was already pretty hot, and I wimped out on my run. I only made it to 8 minutes (instead of the 20 minutes I was supposed to work on with the Couch to 5k program). Either way, with my race coming up close, I think its time to switch to “speed” improvement on my next run. (I have all of December and January to work on endurance again!)

Thursday, November 12
I went for a run as originally scheduled last night. I debated for a bit which weekly podcast I should use to “train” on “speed”. I decided to go with Week 3 (90 seconds jog, 90 seconds walk, 3 minutes jog, 3 minutes walk, repeat). I started off great. Knowing I only had 90 seconds to run I decided to go “fast”….big strides, strong posture….and it felt great! Until the last 10 seconds when I started to feel like I did at the end of 8 minutes just a few days before. Uh-oh. I walked, and when the next 3 minute jog started I really struggled, as if it was the first day of my training. I thought maybe I had over done it during the first interval, but should I really be this tired? I did complete the workout, but I walked for about 30 seconds towards the end when I wasn’t supposed to. I was so disappointed! (I’m also calculating my mile was at around 15 minutes…..that’s slower than I walk!!!)

I later came to the conclusion that I’m just not eating right. Maybe it’s an excuse, but I really think that’s my problem. I was hungry on the drive home, and yet I only had a slice of cheddar cheese before heading out for my run. That can’t be good, right? It just so happened that before going on my run Wednesday morning I hadn’t had a good breakfast either.

After my run I prepared my dinner, but even after eating I still felt like crap. I can’t keep doing that to myself. Usually my issue is time. If I get home at 6:30 and start cooking it’ll be 7:30 before I eat, and then of course I have to wait for my food settles. I can’t be waiting until 9 to go out for a run though!!! I have to figure stuff out, but running a bit later is better than passing out because I haven’t had anything to eat. (Plus I won’t progress on my running.)

So that was my week. Although I feel like I’ve been slacking a bit (purposely choosing “lighter” workouts over more strenuous ones) I’m really proud that I’ve gone nearly 2 weeks working out every day! It hasn’t even felt like too much of a chore yet! However I’m positive that had I not had this goal I would’ve skipped working out many of those days. So, goals are good, and I’m determined to make it to day 30!

I didn’t mention it yesterday, but I had a great weekend. One of those elusive ones that is really just 2 days, feels like it was a bit longer. For the first time in a while I actually felt refreshed on Monday! I definitely think one of the highlights was knowing that I kept with my goal to work out every day!

So, starting where I left off on Monday….

Friday, November 6
On Thursday I finally found my Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred DVD. Never have I been more excited about getting home to work out! So I rushed home on Friday, had a snack, and put on my workout gear.

Jillian did not disappoint. It was just as exhausting as I remembered, and I unfortunately wimped out on a few moves. (My arms are pretty wimpy.) However I am very excited to be able to add this back into my workouts. It has the cardio and strength component that some other DVDs weren’t giving me.

Saturday, November 7
After last night’s workout I figured I needed to let my legs rest a tiny bit, so I didn’t go for my run as I originally planned. Instead I did the Core Secrets/Ab Assault DVD. This time I’m not sure what I did differently, but I struggled a tiny bit more than I normally do.

I definitely feel that this workout works my core, but I never really get into much of a sweat, and that’s a little disappointing. I mentioned this to the BF, and he’s going to check his DVDs for the workout that is supposed to follow the Ab Assault. It’s a bit longer and is a bit more strenuous. We’ll see how that turns out!

Saturday night we went to the movies, and for some reason after we got out of there my lower calf area was HURTING! It was a good hurt, but I still can’t explain why it took a whole day to set in. lol.

Sunday, November 8
Sunday morning my lower legs were still seriously sore. Added to that was a new bicep soreness in my left arm, lol. I was a little worried about my impending run that evening. We did a lot of walking around in the afternoon, and then later I had my dance class (where I’m pleased to report we worked up quite a sweat!).

Afterwards I came back and decided to go ahead with my run. Couch to 5k, Week 5, Day 2. Two intervals of 8 minutes running and 5 minutes recovery. As I head out I figured I’d be happy with just doing the first 8 minutes. That would be the longest I have ever run, and I had already had a long day. And guess what? After I completed the first 8 minute run without stopping (YAY!), I figured I’d give the 2nd interval a shot. AND I DID IT!! I’m SO proud of myself. I’m not sure I have been able to run for 8 minutes straight since high school, or even before that (I never timed myself in high school).

The next workout is supposed to be 20 minutes of straight running. I’m really nervous about it, but if I get it done I’ll give myself permission to moving onto working on my speed. That would probably involve going back to shorter intervals and trying to do them faster than before. As it is now I’m pretty sure I walk faster than I run, and I definitely want to improve on my 5k time from last year!

For now, I have it written in my calendar that on the 14th I’m doing a full 5k practice run. We’ll see how that goes!