All Your Base…

… aren’t belong to me yet, but they will belong to me soon.

I’ve said it many times before, but I have to say it again. Tonight was the easiest run since starting this program! It totally makes up for the bad run I had on Friday! W9D1 didn’t have a chance! I am very happy to have such a strong, easy run this close to the end of the C25K program. Tonight I ran 3.1 miles in 33 minutes which comes to a 10:48 mile pace. I must be slowing down at some point in the last mile. No biggie. I’ll be running the 3.1 distance for a few weeks until I give myself a small rest the week before my 5K. Also, I’m taking next week off of exercise completely. I want to let my body heal completely before I start building the base. It looks like I really timed this program out perfectly for running the race on September 24th. That’s going to be a great day! It’s the day after my birthday and┬áit’s a Saturday evening! I’m going to have a very good time after that race, for sure!

After the 5K race I will start moving forward with distance again and I’m going to add a Tuesday into my Mon-Wed-Fri schedule for speed work. I’m also going to start doing some strength and agility exercises on my run days. Aside from that, I’ll probably take my cross-training up a step. I just haven’t decided what I’m going to do yet. What I’m doing now seems to be working pretty well. I really wish the job market would turn around so I could get some money in my pocket and join the YMCA. I’d really love to do swimming for cross-training! I don’t care about their machines and weights. I’ve never concerned myself much with weight training and such. Using your body weight and resistance is enough if you know what you’re doing and you’re driven.

It’s all moving forward pretty nicely. I’ve also been running without my headphones lately because I got sick of carrying my phone and I didn’t really need it anymore since I stopped following the actual workouts of C25K. Didn’t need the app anymore. It’s nice to know that I don’t need the music. In all the time I used to run, I don’t think I ever went a day without headphones. I still like having the music, though, so once I get some cash, I’m gonna get an armband for it along with some other running accessories I’ve been keeping my eye on.

SO! Awesome run tonight! It can only get better from here… except on the days it sucks. haha.

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BLECH!!!

This run was rough. I realized about halfway through that I wasn’t fueled enough for this one. Granted, it’s only 3 miles and that shouldn’t matter too much, but it occurred to me that I hadn’t eaten since last night and that my last dose of water was somewhere around 13 hours before my run. Why? *shrugs* No reason. It’s been an odd day and I just didn’t even think about any of it. I never felt hungry or thirsty so it never hit me that I hadn’t had those things. Normally I keep on top of it even if I’m not hungry or thirsty, but it has been a weird day. My head has been in a totally different place all day.

Week 8 is finished, but I didn’t finish pretty. My legs felt like lead, my veins felt like there was acid coursing through them and each step was a push after about the halfway point. The only good thing was that my breathing was nice and strong. Looks like the high intensity workouts on my off days are serving me well.

Also still adjusting to running during the daylight hours, even if it is the tail end of dusk haha. Met a cute girl with an awesome dog, though! Not looking for a girlfriend, but I like cute girls in tight running clothes and I like dogs! Can’t complain. haha.

Looking forward to finishing up the program next week and getting back on my own path. I will always recommend C25K to anyone who wants to start running. It got me where I needed to be and I never once wanted to stop the program. But now that I’m able to do what I’m doing, it’s time to go back to my old ways and really get this ball rolling.

Well, it’s Friday. Gonna go have some green tea…. and then a few beers! haha

Ouch

Last night I decided to amp up my cross-training a little, so I reverted to my old training methods which are all pretty intense. Granted, I did take it a little easy because I need to get conditioned before I go all out like I used to, but it was still a rigorous workout and I felt great afterward. Normally I would stay off my legs on non-running days, but I think they’re strong enough to push it a little now. So, I did some high knees, suicides, mountain climbers, burpees, quick steps and push-ups and even a few 200 meter sprints! I also warmed up and cooled down with jumping jacks. A lot of these require heavy use of the legs and they really jack up the breathing rate. Because of the strain on the calves, tonight was a little rough. But not too much.

As I began W8D2 tonight, my calves started to ache a little. I knew this wasn’t something I was going to run through. It was gonna be there for my whole run. The run itself wasn’t bad because, after the very heavy breathing yesterday, all 28 minutes of running tonight were very easy on the lungs. Not to say I wasn’t panting a little, but it was easier to handle which, despite the pain in the lower legs, made for a positive experience. My legs recovered quickly. I got in about an hour ago and took a nice, hot shower and now they feel fine. I’ll take that as a good sign! This was definitely the easiest run since beginning the 5K distance instead of sticking strictly to the C25K plan.

I’m very happy with my progress. It’s nice to be able to take on some other hard workouts now. I never thought I’d feel this good 3 months ago. I’m glad to be back at it!

Daylight

Running while the sun is still up is a bit odd after running past midnight for the past 3 months. It’s not bad, though. I’ve only been running in the dark to avoid the heat, but it has been cooling down slightly around here when the sun gets low so I’ve decided to run while it’s easy to see outside. It’s a completely different experience and it makes everything seem a lot easier. I guess because you’re not trying so hard to focus on any potential dangers in your path. The streetlights around here do a decent job, but there are definitely some dark stretches which can get a little taxing.

I ran W8D1 tonight. I only say that because it’s the 22nd run in the program, but I’m not really doing what it tells me to do. I’ve just been running the 5K distance for the past two workouts which takes me just over 30 minutes. For the novices, I do not recommend this unless you’re ultra sure you can. If I felt even a shade less capable of doing this, I would not. I’m right on that border. I’m slowly moving away from it, though. I’m not disobeying the program for any particular reason. I wasn’t worried about hitting the goals of this program or anything. I blame running in daylight for it, actaully. Being able to see my 5K distance halfway point because of the light just motivated me to go for it. There was no way I wasn’t going to reach it now that I could actually see it.

I’m going to stick with this distance for a few weeks (the rest of this program included) and then add a day for speed work. But, I’ve already talked about all this. Saw some cyclists while I was out. One male and then a female about 10 minutes later. Both said hello as they passed me. That was the first human contact I’ve had while on a run in a long time. haha.

It feels great to be out there doing this. It’s not always pleasant while I’m out there, but the refreshed feeling of strength I always feel afterward is definitely worth it, even if there was no other reward. I love feeling stronger by the day.

GREEN TEA TIME!

More

The sun was still up when I went running today. Not for any particular reason. I went outside, realized it was a good temperature and the humidity was low and thought it would be a good time to run. I went back inside, threw on my gear, left my Android behind and went for it. It was nice being unchained despite the lack of music. Honestly, I didn’t really notice.

When my 5 minute warm-up ended, the running was a tiny bit rough for the first couple minutes. Just had to find the groove. Once I stopped thinking about it, I fell right into step. It was all pretty mundane from there, but I passed that white fence I’ve mentioned before and thought “Why don’t you just run to the next intersection?” That’s about another 1/3 of a mile. So, I went for it. This would mean going farther than I’m supposed to. I honestly just wanted to see if I could do it. My body felt fine. Usually I’d be a little tired by then and be dreading the second half of the run. I wasn’t. At all. I hit the intersection and turned around. Everything was going great.

The trip back wasn’t that bad. I did have to encourage myself a bit, but a tow truck honked at me and gave me a thumbs up so that gave me everything I needed to finish the run. I’m pretty sure the driver was a runner, too. He was definitely built like one. Not the stereotypical big guy you see behind the wheel most of the time. Finished 2.85 miles at a 10:30 minute mile pace (30 minutes). My nipple bled a little which was confusing, but whatever. I guess it’s the shirt haha.

I had a good time. Now I’m relaxing for my weekend with a glass of wine. I feel pretty good. What a nice day!.

Stronger

One thing I realize about what I’ve been doing lately is that I never appreciated being in shape before. Not truly. Back when I was in top shape, I got there because I needed to for martial arts. I was doing it because I had to in order to do something I wanted to do. I also started doing it when I was an indestructible teenager and kept that up seamlessly until my mid-20’s. I did love running, but it wasn’t as challenging. There were hard parts, sure, but I was in good shape to begin with so it wasn’t as hard as it seems now. This time I really do appreciate when it when I power through a run like I did tonight. W7D2 wasn’t nearly as much of a struggle as the past few runs have been. Normally I’m pushing myself and thinking things like, “You can do this. This is easy. Keep going so you can be strong for the next run! Was that dog crap you just stepped in?!” Tonight I was actually thinking about this Audi I want to buy when the finish chime rang. Even though I knew it would ring soon judging by where I was on my route, it still surprised me a little.

Another thing I’ve thought of lately is that the running has become sorta routine and, since the runs are harder and they take longer, it’s getting tedious. This is not to say I’m sick of running at all. I still love it. I guess there was just something about the shorter intervals and the ability to speed up without killing myself that made it exciting. I think that once I’m conditioned enough to start speed training, the thrill will be back in full swing. I do still look forward to my run days and I never hesitate to go out there and do it, so I’m not in trouble. I just don’t want that to change haha.

As I’ve mentioned before, I’ll be moving to Tampa when I’ve saved up enough to get a car (that damn Audi!) and pay for everything necessary to secure an apartment. I’ve decided to look into martial arts schools up there. I know, I know… I’m crazy. This will be my third style, but I’ve been away from it for far too long and I really want to get back into it. I haven’t decided which style yet, but I have it narrowed down to a few. Now it’s just a matter of figuring out which will work best with where I’m living. So, I have to move and get settled before I can finalize my decision. Luckily, the few options I have in mind are equally appealing for different reasons. I won’t be unhappy with whichever works out to be the best. I honestly think that the fitness I will achieve through martial arts and the inspiration it will give me for other workouts / running is going to be huge. And by that time I’ll be in good enough shape that starting up won’t be so difficult.

Well, it’s green tea time. Gonna relax myself into a mini-coma.

Two in a row!

Yeah, I shouldn’t make a big deal out of running two nights in a row, and I’m not going to. I’m simply stating the facts. As I said in the last entry, I had to correct that Wednesday – Sunday run schedule. My legs felt great within 20 minutes of my run last night, so I figured it was okay. Everything feels fine now even after my second run day in a row. I’ve obviously made enough progress to do that every now and then if I need to for whatever reason.

Nothing really special about the run tonight. The last five minutes were challenging and I was pushing pretty good, but when my phone chimed to signal the end of my run, I kept going for the extra 50 yards until I reached the start / end point. It’s not a huge distance, but when you’re already out of gas, it’s quite the ego boost haha.

Tomorrow I do my non-run day workout which consists of push-ups, calisthenics and Pilates core training that will improve my running. I’m also going to attempt to begin a pull-up routine. This is probably not going to go very well at first. I don’t think I can do a single pull-up these days. It won’t stop me from putting in the effort until I can, though haha. I remember being able to do over 20 of them. Good lord, I’m out of shape. But I’m getting it all back and it has to begin somewhere. It really does get on my nerves that I let myself get this out of shape. I know I didn’t have the time to keep in shape so I can’t be too mad at myself, but I forgot how much I missed feeling the burn when you’re pushing yourself and that awesome ache the next day when the muscles are healing. I can’t describe it, but it just makes you feel so powerful and self-assured. Love it. I’ve said before that I come closer to feeling like the man I was with every run. Well… I think I’m pretty much there now. haha. Someone even commented the other day that they’d noticed a big change since last time they’d seen me and that was just before I started the program. At first I was worried that maybe they were calling me an asshole, but it turns out they liked the change. So… that’s something. Not that I give a damn what anyone thinks, but it’s nice to know that the confidence I feel on the inside isn’t just my mind playing tricks on me.

Time to have some green tea and relax with some 30 Rock which I’d never seen before yesterday. Netflix has all the seasons so I’m doing it marathon style. It’s a lot funnier than I thought it would be, which is why I never watched it before.

Goodnight!