|Right, like fat kids would run while holding ice-cream.|
Then there were the slow kids. The ones who didn't make it into the qualifying races because ... well, look at them? Why waste time? Yeah, I was one of those kids. I had one event. The Charity race, open to any student who didn't qualify to be in other races. Every year, I entered, from prep school to high school I always entered to try for those points. I'd close my eyes and focus all my efforts on moving my legs as fast as possible and every year I was the last kid across the finish line. Every. Single. Year. Now, I want to go on record as being against the feel good 10th place trophy. I don't want a trophy for losing, but dammit, losing all those races did nothing for my self esteem or my ego.
Today I can run a 5K in just over 30 minutes. When I started running, I could run for about under a minute before crashing. This is how I made the transition.
First off, I needed the right tools, here's a few things I recommend:
- A heart rate monitor.
- A GPS tracking tool for running.
- Comfortable breathable clothing.
- An MP3 player
- A strap/case/clip for that MP3 player that keeps it in a controllable, safe and DRY location.
|Racing for a Charity, How you like me now?|
- 45 minutes on the treadmill
- 20 minutes on the elliptical
- 15 minutes on an exercise bike (no recumbent bikes or bikes with backs, if you can quietly read a book, you're not exerting enough)
- 10 minutes on the stairs to cool down.
My first run lasted 5 minutes, I was super excited, I had never run that long before, only sprinted, I think it was 5pm, which for me was hauling ass. When I finished the 45 minute set, I tried it again at the end and I had 10 full minutes of running in one workout. So I started adding more running and using walking breaks to balance out my heart rate, still walking on the incline to do so. Well, now there's an app that tells you when to run and when to walk and how to pace yourself and get ready for a 5K from a lack of activity. I don't trust a running program that has no way to monitor how well your body is reacting to the stress, but that doesn't make it a bad idea.
The cardio I do nowadays is more along the lines of "Fartleks" where I stay level and modify my pace so that I can run for higher exertions for short periods, then rest and resume. It's helping my to jump ahead speed-wise. Forcing my body to grow more accustomed to the faster pace and bringing my control and heart rate into balance. Thanks to that, I have been consistently improving over time in 5Ks, runs and even dancing all night and partying with friends. I enjoy the energy I can sustain and it all started with some very difficult first steps, and the right set of Phat tools.