The week after my trail race, I made the tough decision to put all exercise on hold. No running, weight training or zumba, just a straight up week with no physical activity. I’d earned it and my hip was still bothering me so I knew my body needed it.
And while it was nice to take that time off, getting back on the exercise wagon was harder than I expected.
After a week off, I was dreading the return to the gym. I’d found myself lethargic and also dealing with a massive family crisis. But I knew if I wanted to improve my run time by my next race on April 22nd, I was going to need to get off my ass and start running again.
So, I planned a gym date with ye ol’ treadmill on Tuesday. As I was expressing this to my guy, I had a crazy thought strike. Why not set up a challenge for the month of April!?
Here is my thinking: I’m under a lot of pressure due to that family crisis I mentioned and I’m finding the motivation to get up and go difficult. I’d much rather go home and stick my head under my pillow and avoid all of reality. What better way to combat the blues than a little healthy competition?
So I pitched the idea and my guy was totally in for it! We set up goals for ourselves (I’m working to lose while he’s working to gain) and we have a month to achieve this. And the great thing is, we are both highly competitive people. What I’m hoping is that after this month, we’ll both achieve our goals and have established some new habits that will continue to improve our health and our running skills.
Right now the running skill I’m working on is a consistent run without walking. I have a 5k this month and I think I can meet that goal then. The guy is scheduled to run a half marathon in May so I know he could use the training, too.
Now it’s just a test of who can get up and do it!
With this all in my mind, I headed to the gym and got myself on a treadmill and set my pace at 5.0 mph with a goal of 20 minutes. I wasn’t shooting for distance, but for consistency. To run without stopping, slowing down or walking. Just a consistent pace.
And guess what? I did it! 20 minutes are running without stopping while I watched The Deadliest Catch. Thank GAWD for the TVs they’ve added to our treadmills. Those things really can make your workout go by fast.
When I hit my 20 minute mark I added 5 more minutes of a cool down walk at a 3.5 mph pace while I waited for the stairmaster to free up. Now I was soaked through with sweat but my hip hurt very little and I wasn’t too tired. I felt good! And I was excited at my ability to run a good length of time.
Such an improvement over the last year and a half!
After that I did 10 minutes on the massive beast of a stairmaster in the corner. The thing stands alone and practically takes up half the gym itself it’s so big. And I can’t say I loved it. My long feet kept catching the step coming down and getting pinched or I would trip and kinda stumble.
Note to the clumsy: The stairmaster is NOT your friend!
But I’d give it a go again just to break up my usual workout routine.
Today I plan to run the neighborhood around the guy’s home. We spend Wednesday evenings together as a little family and my son has been interested in getting better at running.
6 years old and already he found an interest in running, go figure!
I’ve mapped out a short course around the residential area surrounding my guy’s complex. Just a little 2.5 mile walk/jog. I don’t expect to run much of this with my little one in tow. We’ll just head on out and see how it goes for him since he’ll be running in a couple of weeks at the race I’m doing, only he’ll be participating in the kids 1 mile Fun Run.
A family that runs together has fun together!
(oi…that was very cheesy!)