Back to the Gym

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I finally am near the end of this crazy Winter Quarter.  On Tuesday, I gave my final presentation for biomechanics.  Might I mention that it required 12 extra hours in the lab and we slaved away for three weeks on it?! On Thursday, I attended my final class of the quarter for Athletic Injuries, turning in two cases studies, and turned in my final paper with the group of death for Sociology.  All that is left is one final exam and one paper for Athletic Injuries, then GOOD BYE Winter Quarter. I’m expecting decent grades… fingers crossed!

The downside is that I took a week off from my training, and I definitely felt the pain during my soccer games this past week. So on Saturday, I forced my lazy butt to get back into the gym. I made myself finish 35 minutes on the treadmill, but it required a bit of walking.

I started out with 6 mph and ran 15 minutes, then I walked for about a minute at 3.5 mph. I ran again for about 5 minutes, this time upping the speed to 6.5 mph. Walked at 4 mph for about a minute and a half. Ran again at 7.0 mph for about 3 minutes, walked 2 minutes at 3.9 mph. Then I finished up the 30 minutes with an 8.5 mph “sprint” (this is not my sprint speed when free running, I’m surprisingly faster, but it’s scary to go that fast on the treadmill). I did a 5 minute cool down walk at 4 mph.

But I decided that wasn’t enough, so I hit the stairmaster (see below). I challenged myself to do 15 minutes of the fat burner at level 8 – my usual, when I do the stairmaster at all, is 10 minutes, and not usually after running that long. So I did 5 minutes going straight at it, two minutes walking up sideways for each leg, then finished the last 6 minutes facing forward again. Man, were my legs jello.

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The point is, I was feeling a little pissed at myself for not making time to get into the gym all week long, but I’m proud of myself for not shying away from the soreness. I’m back at it again today, gonna force myself to get another decent run in. I’m going for longevity for my 12k coming up, since I still can’t run 7 miles. I’ll be done with finals on Tuesday, so I’m hoping I can hit the gym a bit this week and work on making a good habit of it. I had a bad week, but I’m ready to make up for it this week! Advice is always welcome!

12k Training

In all the craziness of the final weeks of the quarter, I realized I am one month away from my first 12k, and I am not at all prepared.

 

I looked up some training tips to help get me ready for the race… They suggest running 7-10 miles on a regular basis. A 12k is roughly 7.5 miles. WHAT?!! I’m struggling to run three right now.

I’ve been trying this way of training called “fartlek” (Swedish for speed play) running.  Traditionally, it is used for trail running.  The way it would then work is you create variation in your running speed based on your environment.  For example, you pick a tree and you decide to sprint to that tree.  After you reach that tree you see a rock and decide to jog to that rock.  Then you see a log with some moss on it, and you decide to sprint to that log. You get the picture.

So my variation of that has been with music, since I am living in the city and there aren’t a whole lot of trails within a reasonable distance from my apartment.  I turn on pandora and I run to the first song, adjusting the speed of the treadmill so my feet will hit the ground on beat with the song.  When the next song comes on, I’ll adjust my speed to whatever that song’s beat is.  I don’t allow myself to skip songs; that’s the tricky part.  The really slow songs that I normally wouldn’t run to I actually run to at double-time, and that makes those songs death!  Before I start running, I set a goal number of songs to run through and I try to beat that.  Some days I do well, other days I can’t quite make it.  Plus, you never know how long your songs are going to be on any given day, so accepting defeat is essential.  Gotta listen to your body after all.

I never thought I’d say this, but I really look forward to my runs. I just don’t know how I can push myself to get more done.  I have a month to get as close to in-12k-shape as possible.  Anyone have any suggestions?

 

“Running is a sport that is fair and holds you accountable.  How you do on the day depends only on your performance.  You can’t blame the umpire, the opposition, your teammates – it’s just you.”