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Flying Electronics?

28 May
Day 2

Ran 4 miles – 45 min., little bit of hamstring/hip tightness

Now that I’ve decided to run for 40 days in a row [well, 38 now!], I’m hyper aware of the little things that bother me during my runs [like my socks]. Today, my socks were fine, but my entertainment was a bit of an issue. My super awesome fabulous sister got me an iPad for graduation and I’m a little bit obsessed with it. I love watching tv shows while I work out because it makes the time fly, but with my little iPod touch, it’s hard on the treadmill. I end up squishing way too close to the display and my stride gets all funky, and it’s no bueno. But the iPad is amazing [for other reasons too, but clearly for the keeping me distracted]!

Here’s my issue. I’m petrified that I’m going to fling it off the treadmill. I’ve lost many an mp3 player that way. In fact, I usually buy really cheap non-iPod video players for exactly this reason [the touch was ANOTHER present from my super amazing sister]. I don’t know if it’s my height or if I move my arms funny or what, but invariably at least once a run, my hands get caught in the headphone cord. Most of the time, I can catch it before it comes tumbling to the ground, but certainly not always. Anyone have any suggestions on how to keep my cord out of the way and my iPad in working condition?

Also, I had to go to bar class this morning. On a Saturday. During Memorial Day weekend. I should be on a beach somewhere fist pumping and drinking margaritas. Not cool. I came home from the gym and realized I had absolutely nothing to eat. My lunch literally consisted of 2 pickle spears, hummus and bagel chips and a Baby Bell cheese. I don’t even have time to be a real person & go grocery shopping … how I’m going to get my run on for the next 38 days is beyond me.

Double also, I ran in shorts today! This was the longest I’ve ever run in shorts [chub rub and I have a sordid history]. I was 100% concerned about how I was going to handle marathon training in SoCal in capris, so yay! Thanks, breakup diet!

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>2-a-Day

28 Feb

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Workout:
Morning: 2 mi. run outside 19:47
Evening: 7 mi. treadmill .5 incline 68:47

Um, hi. Let’s talk about this for a second. I ran TWICE today. I’m not going to lie, I’m pretty impressed with myself. Now, it should be noted that I absolutely did NOT intend to break my workout this way. I had 7 miles on the schedule for this weekend. I may or may not have been too hungover yesterday to manage (sometimes martinis are too delicious to pass up) so I knew I was going to have to get it in today before I had to be at a training session at 10 am. I carbo loaded with some delicious pasta (the first time I’ve had pasta in a really long time) and a little red wine (not the first time I’ve had red wine in a really long time) and was tucked into bed by 1030 pm. Excellent …

Except. I meant to set my alarm for 645, be out the door by 7 and by home by 830 or so – plenty of time to shower and get ready. Well. You can, therefore, imagine my surprise when my alarm went of at 745, not 645. Crap. That would definitely NOT be enough time to run 7 miles. Knowing that I was technically still “injured,” even if I felt awesome, I didn’t want to push too hard and hurt myself. I decided to run 3 or 4 miles and finish the rest when I finished training. Well. As soon as I started running I knew that wasn’t going to happen. My legs felt heavy, my chest was burning and I just did. not. want. At 2 miles I passed my house and bailed. I was hoping to get 5 miles in when I got home but I wasn’t optimistic.

By the time I got home from training it was after 5 (yes, it was absolutely the longest day ever. ugh.). I didn’t particularly relish the idea of running outside and ending my run in the dark, but I didn’t want to run 5 miles on the treadmill. By the time I carefully weighed my options (aka stalked facebook for a while) it was already dark out. Since I’m a magnet for cars in the dark (I have the scars to prove it!), my only real option was the gym. I reluctantly headed out, figuring at least it would be empty while the Oscars were going on. I hopped on the treadmill, figuring I’d run my 5 as fast as I could and be out of there. But while I was running I got to thinking. I was supposed to run 7 consecutive miles today. If I was really serious about running a half in May (and I’m 90% certain I am) I wasn’t going to be able to run half of it in the morning, take an 8 hour break, and then run the second half in the afternoon. So I decided to just stay on for the whole 7 miles. This was definitely easier said than done. The time limit on the treadmill was 60 minutes (are there treadmills in this world that go longer? There must be, right?) and I knew it would take me longer than that to run 7 miles. I thought about splitting it up 3 and 4 or 5 and 2 but I kind of wanted to see that 7 on the display. I figured if I could average a 10 min. mile I could finish in under 70 minutes (the 60 minute limit + the 10 minute cooldown). I did a 1 mile warmup at 5.5 and then just took off. Everything about the run felt amazing. At the start of the last mile “One For My Baby (And One More For the Road)” came on my iPod and I knew I’d finish. The cooldown period was less than awesome because I had to keep fiddling with the speed, but I finished it and it was amazing. This was the run I wish I had had last weekend (and absolutely no leg pain at all! I may or may not want to marry my physical therapist).

It looked a little something like this (for those of you keeping score at home).

I really couldn’t be more pleased with my run tonight. It makes me feel so strong and accomplished and awesome, which is what I really needed after a bit of a demoralizing, confidence-busting sort of week (I may or may not have had an existential crisis about what I’m doing with my life). The decision to do the full 7 miles was the best one I’ve made in a long time. Now I’m enjoying some left over pasta, some red wine, a very much needed foam roll and the dvr-ed Oscars.

Have you ever done 2 runs in one day? How do you feel about breaking up long runs?

>Gimpy McGimperson

22 Feb

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Workout: 3.1 miles – 36:03 – treadmill, no incline

I was desperate to test my knee out today but nervous that if I went running outside and it started to hurt I’d still have to make my way back home. I decided I’d head to the gym and hop on the treadmill. If my knee hurt, I’d just stop and switch to something else. I ran my 3 miles very slowly but with no pain. I stopped twice to stretch when it felt like my IT Band was starting to get stiff. It didn’t hurt, exactly, but there was definitely a feeling of almost hurting. It felt good to be running but I was just so frustrated at how hobbled I felt that I ended up leaving the gym disappointed.
Good news, though! I made a PT appointment for Wednesday. The therapist came highly recommended and when I called to make my appointment, he said “Oh, bring your shorts and shoes and we’ll take a look at your stride.” That’s super encouraging (right? It’s totally encouraging). I have a great dislike of doctors in general, so I’m not looking forward to the appointment, but hopefully he can get me back on track.
In an effort to not gain unbelievable amounts of weight while I’m sidelined, I went to the grocery store tonight to get tons of yummy salad ingredients. I also got 3 bottles of wine and a very large can of icing. So close and yet, so far.
Anybody have any experience with PTs? Am I making a mountain out of a molehill?
Also, true story, I call my Grandma Gimpy. She’s has 2 bad knees and a bad arm that never set right after a break and I joke with her about it. It sounds awful and cruel, but it’s meant with all of the love in the world. As I’ve mentioned, she’s kind of hardcore.

>Speedy McSpeederson

14 Feb

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Workout:
2 miles – 19:40
Potential dance class later (?)

I was more than a little sluggish this morning after a weekend of too much food and too much wine and too much sun. I realized that I had never turned my Garmin off after Saturday’s “long” run and it was out of battery. Crap. I knew that if I waited for it to charge I’d never make it out of the house. So, off to the gym I went.

I used to love doing my runs on the treadmill. I’m mildly [read: exceptionally] anal about distance and pace and knowing exactly how fast and how far I’m going. For a long time, the treadmill was the only way to ensure that my numbers were accurate. Sure, I had a digital watch with a timer to determine my overall time and Google maps to get my distance, but I knew it wasn’t 100% accurate. Then, I met my friend Henry. My sister gave me Henry, my Garmin, for Christmas this year and let me tell you, I am obsessed. I love tracking my pace and distance in real time, seeing the various different graphs when I sync him to my computer and really just everything about him. I’ve run almost all of my runs since I got him outside and it’s been pretty awesome. My knees aren’t hurting as much (I think this probably has to do with the way I change my form on the treadmill) and I feel like I’m becoming a much stronger runner.

Which leads me to this morning’s run. I thought I’d love being back on the treadmill again. Thursday night I ran on the treadmill and it felt great to just run and not think – not look for cars or stop lights or yappy dogs. Today was nothing like that. I knew that the gym in the morning was going to be more crowded than I wanted it to be. I knew I was going to be annoyed by the old ladies who walk on the treadmills and talk on their cell phones while I wait (not so) patiently for one to open up. Maybe it was this mentality that was the problem. Maybe it was that I spent an awesome weekend outside in gorgeous southern California weather and I didn’t want to be inside. Either way, I was in trouble. I hopped on the treadmill after a 10 minute wait and immediately, I was bored. Like, really bored. Like, counting the seconds bored. I really wanted to be running, I just didn’t want to be running on the treadmill. I knew I wanted to get 2 miles in, but at the rate I was going, I wasn’t going to make it for .2 miles. So I decided to go fast. Really fast.* I ran my first mile in 10:15 and my second in 9:25. What’s that? You think that’s a typo? Nope. That’s a 9ish minute mile. The great thing about it was that I didn’t feel bad. I wasn’t exceptionally out of breath, my legs weren’t super tired. I felt like I do after every 2 mile run – a little sad it’s over so soon, a little pleased it’s done, a little red in the face (it’s a thing – I get really red when I exercise, even a little bit. People stop and ask me if I’m ok. Yes, I’m fine, I’m just very pale). I’m not sure where all of this speed is coming from, but I’m definitely not going to complain!

*Note: Yes, I realize this is not actually really fast. No, I do not care. It’s really fast for me, and that’s what counts.

>Victory?

11 Feb

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I have kind of a million things going through my head right now … I believe this calls for some bullet-points!

  • I had a sneaking suspicion that I wasn’t really very fast … that either Henry the Garmin or the dailymile map or both were lying to me, that I was still a 12 min. mile kind of girl. To test this theory, I tried to run fast on the treadmill – and it worked! Mile 1: 10:45. Mile 2: 9:45. Whoa. I think it’s time to admit that I might actually be an 11 min. mile girl! [NOTE: I am painfully aware that this is slow to other people. Whatevs. It’s blistering fast to me!]
  • Tonight was one of those runs where I just did not want to stop. I ran my 2 miles then hit the cool down button on the treadmill and kept upping the speed because I just didn’t want to walk. As long as I was running, I didn’t have to think about anything or deal with anything (see previous post about my love of this feeling).
  • I know that exercise produces adrenaline and that’s supposed to rev you up, but for me, nothing calms me down quite like running. I feel like I can breathe again and I’m not quite as anxious.
  • Why is it always so hot in the gym? Seriously, Bally’s Total Fitness.
  • You should not attempt to run and cry at the same time, you will end up with a side stitch.

I’m so glad I ended up going on this run. While it didn’t necessarily heal my heart or solve my problems, it made me feel better (and, truthfully, after the end of my night, it was either this or eating icing out of the can).

Have you ever used running to relieve stress? Does it calm you or just make you more edgy?