Monday, 28 February 2011

C25k Week 2 Day 3

I've been ill over the weekend. Yesterday I had basically nothing to eat for Breakfast, Dinner or Tea. I think I had a bag of snack-a-jacks, half a slice of bread and two mouthfuls of cereal to keep me going. I had caught my Sons stomach Bug and had it steadily coming out of both ends (TMI, I know). I also got to bed a 4:45 in the morning as my daughter has now come down with the bug and was up all night being sick. A run didn't necessarily seem like a wise choice but it worked out OK. I made it round the route in a slightly quicker pace than before so that is progress. As for my legs, well they are still up to their old tricks but I do come home each time feeling that bit stronger.

I think that I owe it to my body to carry on with Week 2 for at least one more run because I just don't see my legs (and heart/lungs at this point) making it in through a week 3 run

My stats

2.88 km @7:21/km

My Vitals
172.2lbs (-0.8lbs), Body Fat 24.7% -2.0%), BMI: 24.7 (NORMAL -0.2).

Saturday, 26 February 2011

C25k Week 2 Day 2

Today was my first run in proper rain. The warmup was really cold but I didn't notice it after that point as i had other things to worry about. To summarize the run over all, My legs felt a little better with just very uncomfortable tight feeling up until the last couple of runs where most of the pain returned. At this point I am still not so confident of how I am going to get through week three with my legs and general fitness. I felt generally more puffed out during the run with only the first run not needing a great deal of recovery time. I got a bit further with the warmup walk before starting the run/walk intervals which meant I had a bit more in the way of hill work so that may have contributed. Run 5 had me considering stopping after about 30 seconds but I jet thought that i would be so disappointed with myself to stop. I have also feeling a bit down in the weather with sore throat etc so again i will do myself the justice of factoring that in also :)

My two memorable moments in the run were:

1. Turning the corner of a particular junction only for a car turning into the junction to drive speedily through a puzzle and give me a face FULL of road water.

2. Between runs 5 and 6, an old woman was pootling along about 10 meters ahead of me. Try as I might with my not so "brisk walk" I could not catch the old bat up!!

What is good to see is that BMI says I am Normal! Body Fat is coming down, but still has to come down more.

My stats

2.76 km @7:36/km

My Vitals
173.8lbs (-1.2lbs), Body Fat 24.9% -0.7%), BMI: 24.9 (NORMAL -0.2).

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

C25k Week 2 Day 1

So yes, I decided to move onto Week 2 today in defiance of my crappy day. Luckily for me the 90/120 intervals line up nicely with the various uphill parts of the route meaning that the run was easier in some respects.

However, 90 seconds can feel like forever and I mean that. After runs 1 and 2, it was clear that my legs were back to their horrible state and the pain was torture. I did not think that I would make it round at all. After run 3 and 4, I was seriously puffing like an asthmatic who has just run a marathon. What I will say to the credit of the program designers is that the 2 minute rests between were absolutely spot on. I was able to recover (my breath, not my legs) in time for the next run on every occasion. Run 5, bizarrely was the easiest of all and the only moment I felt "Happy" around the entire route. Run 6 went better than I might have hoped. Because I had run farther, I had to tackle a steep incline whilst running the last 40 seconds or so which actually went well.

I am concerned that my legs are not going to hold up for the greater distances ahead. They are just not getting any better and these 90 seconds bursts killed them .

I am really disappointed also by my food intake today. Having been so careful with my food intake (especially fat intake), my wife had cooked a new meal today and when I put in the ingredients into the livestrong website, I was 30g over for fat today!!! Fucking Mayonnaise!!

My stats

2.61 km @7:30/km

My Vitals
175.0lbs (-2lbs), Body Fat 25.6% -1.3%), BMI: 25.1 (Overweight -0.4).

Looking forward to my run

Work has been really crappy today. Lots of frustration and anger to let out. Took half of my lunch hour to have a brisk walk around the town to burn off a few extra cals. Not really ideal in my work shoes. Had a bit of foot pain and my legs are still feeling battered, so I hope the run goes ok tonight.

I need a good one to lift my sprits - so much so that I have contemplations of moving onto week 2. Yes, bollocks to it, I'm going to do that. I hope I don't crock myself further in the process!! It is a big gamble.

Monday, 21 February 2011

C25k Week 1 Day 4

Legs again not good. Constant pain with the calves and shins, no let up at all. However, the run DID feel better today. I was definitely quicker around the route today (although my GPS screwed up again). What I noticed more than anything was that my walking pace between the runs was much more nearer the "Brisk Walking Pace" that podcast lady demanded of me.

I had no doubts that I would complete the run at any point which was great and I feel genuinely motivated by this. I still have a long, long way to go. Part of the run involved me running the full 60 seconds up from the bottom of Webb Rise and I had to give myself a good talking to to manage that one. Good job there was no-one around.

I was running along the cycle track (which is next to the pedestrian path) and I saw flashing lights coming in the opposite direction. Thinking it was a bike, I moved over onto the path only to find out that it was a woman jogger with two dogs. Each dog had a flashing red collar!

I'm going to save up for a dedicated GPS/HRM watch (Looking at the Garmin Forerunner 305) to stop all this nonsense with the iPod switching off / Pausing / Crap GPS tracking.

At this point if the next run progresses well on Wednesday, I might look to take on Week 2 on Saturday (Yikes!!)

My stats

2.53 km @7:54/km

My Vitals
177.0lbs (+1lbs), Body Fat 26.9% +1.3%), BMI: 25.5 (Overweight 0).

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Morning update

Left leg ok. Right leg stiff and painful from the foot up to and inclusive of the knee. I really hope my legs will be up for the punishment coming up during this program!

C25k Week 1 Day 3

I woke up with my legs in no better state than previous days gone by. We had a birthday party for one of Hannah's friends at a soft play area and I swear that my 2 year old boy Daniel outran me comfortably when I tried to chase him down. I was doing a fair bit of hobbling today despite a whole bunch of stretching that I've done both today and over the past few days.

As such, I was contemplating sitting out another run today, but I wanted to give it a shot and get out in the open. Tackling the same route as last time when I made it back limping, I set off in a positive mood. I love whatever the song is on the Week 1 NHS podcast and it helps motivate me nicely during the warmup. Run 1 and the calves start tightening up painfully again. Run two saw the shins begin to hurt. I got past the place where I had had to turn back previously and consciously wondered whether I should press on with the 2k ahead or turn back and retrace the 1k. I decided to push through the pain and run 3 came very quickly, but I kept going. I stopped to rub my shins and calves for about 10 seconds before coming up to the serious climb of the route, the aptly named "Webb Rise". I thought that my 90 seconds brisk walk (ok, dragging my heels slog) might get me a good way up it, but no - the delightful podcast lady ordered me to "Get ready for you next run - you can do it - GO!". Pants. Probably about 40 seconds in I almost stopped, but didn't. Obviously now my shins, calves and feet now were wrecked and my walking pace was very laboured. Turning the corner into the next street, I did a bit of positive jabbering to myself and felt a little easier on my legs. I completed runs 5 and 6 with only part grimace and a slight upward curl of my lips. When the lady announced that I only had two runs left, I felt actual joy, certainly the first I've had at all. Even though my legs had abandoned me, I felt a twinge of happiness. I completed run 7 without too much fuss but then nearly made a fatal mistake. One of my shoes had come untied and I stopped for about 10 seconds simply to tuck the laces up. When I stood up, my God! I didn't think that my feet would pick up because they felt like lead. I pushed myself to move on and thankfully completed the last run without too much fuss!.

All iced, stretched and rested up now My legs don't feel any worse than they were this morning (which still isn't great) and the soles of my feet ache a fair bit. But either way I completed the run today, not skipping any parts for the first time.

Obviously I will be revisiting Week 1 next until I feel able to progress and (hopefully) my legs improve.

I hope this is the first good day of many to come!

My stats

2.79 km @7:33/km

My Vitals
176.0lbs (-3.4lbs), Body Fat 25.6% +0.1%), BMI: 25.5 (Overweight -0.3).

Friday, 18 February 2011

Workout and stretching and Fitsync.

I did some free weights at home yesterday and am keeping motivated by tracking how I'm doing them using Fitsync. The interface for the website is horrendous, but it does do what I want it to do by allowing me to define workouts, set targets and see graphs of my performance. I love to see an upward trend, the sign that I am succeeding. I suppose that is one aspect that is drawing me to want to run. The thrill of seeing (I am at this point dreaming of) graphs indicating increase in time, distance and then hopefully speed is one I just am itching to get going on. I'm using runkeeper which I would like to say is a brilliant website / iOS combination. I did start out wanting to use the Nike+ GPS because it's slicker, well certainly the website is. The problem is that the ipod app doesn't like my iPod touch / Holux GPS combination whereas runkeeper has no problems in that area.

So this morning, I didn't feel any new soreness. I've still got some pain in my right hand Lat from when I was twisting around with the kids and it's causing pain turning in my sleep, but no new muscle strains, which is good for a wimp like me!

But the legs, curses and damnation are NO BETTER. I've had a few days now of rest, ice, elevation and stretching and the pain is still there. Some points in the day still see me limping about. The right leg particularly is being a bitch. How the hell am I going to go out running tomorrow with it like this?! I am more than impatient, I am champing at the bit.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Legs no Workee

Got home after work last night and the pain had increased in my shin so there was no walking for me, another setback. I worked on a fair bit of stretching and ice/rest for the leg after the Kids went to bed. In the late part of the evening, the legs felt really good, but I have awoke to twinges again this morning.

On the menu today, more stretching and no mileage. Yipeee!

Staying Positive

I did go out for a little jog with my new Nike's yesterday to test the water. In hindsight, it proved nothing. Yes there was a return of the shin and calf pain fairly instantly, but hardly surprising since it was painful even beforehand.

I am trying to stay motivated. My hope is that this shin splint business is do to poorly developed legs because I can cure that with some hard work in stretching and strengthening. I really don't want to stop "Getting out there" and I am going to try a bit of a walk today. I'm thinking of taking a walk around my new route that I failed so badly at running just a couple of days ago. If the shins start hurting then I'll walk back and admit that I am going to have to stay off of my feet for a while longer. If the walking is Ok then I might be able to gradually work up.

Also my back pain is still there as well as much soreness in the right bicep. My body is SOOO weak it's ridiculous!

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Last throw of the dice

I went to a running shop for a gait test but my lack of experience (non) of using a treadmill was an obstacle to getting a good video capture. From what the guy saw and from how he observed me running down the street, his belief was that I overpronate. This is contradictory to the Wet Test that I performed, but I am willing to give it a go. I got a pair of Nike Zoom Structure Triax+.

I'm frustrated that I need to lay off of the running for God knows how long whilst I heal up. He seemed surprised by the amount of pain I had found myself in for a very short period of time which worries me that there might be an underlying problem somewhere in there.

Having now spent a total of £160 on running shoes and gear, this would be a shocking waste of money if it turns out that Running is not going to work. I could have bought a bloody bike for that!! I am sick and frustrated at having to rest it. I want to go out and run NOW, not in two day or a week or 2 weeks, that is just intolerable for me.

For now it is back to stretching and ice **FFS!**.


Monday, 14 February 2011

C25k Week 1 Woes

Last night I suffered from lost of pain in the side of my lower back, where I have had previous weakness. I think partially from throwing my children around and partly down to the weight lifting program I continued yesterday.

My Shin's and calf muscles were still really sore this morning, but I chose to take advantage of my last day off of work and go for my first daytime run. The weather was perfect, sunny with just a nice chill breeze. I had chosen a new route to see if it likes the GPS a bit better (which it did). Unfortunately I went out in my ordinary trainers and this might have played a part in me only making it through the first two runs before limping back home, depressed with shockingly painful shins - front and outside outer. I am convinced that this is now anterior shinsplints.

The problem is that I really don't know what to do about it. I've got stretches and exercises that I can do of course to strengthen the muscles and tendons, but what about running shoes? My belief is that is under-pronate (supinate) based on the "Wet Test" and the fact that my old pairs of trainers show huge wear on the outside heel. I've bought running shoes on that basis. The Nike Lunarglide+ 2 which supposedly offer support for under-pronators

Could it be heel strike, could it be overstriding? I am running on pavement but have little choice in the matter.

I will go and fork out for gait analysis tomorrow (and possibly a new costly pair of running shoes) in the hope that I might find a miraculous answer. Until then, my running days are over before they started.

Very, very depressing.

My stats (for what they are worth today)

1.8 km @9.27/km

My Vitals
179.4lbs (+0.6lbs), Body Fat 25.5% +0.5%), BMI: 25.8 (Overweight +0.1).

Saturday, 12 February 2011

C25k Week 1 Day 2

Hard to say if it went better today or not. I got a repeat performance with the lower outer calf/shin (shin splints?) and also painful feet today. The GPS screwed up. The first half of the route shows loads of zigzags and thus my route came out at over 4k!

Now the good part was that I only skipped one of the runs altogether and was short of one other. At the end, I extended the 60 second run to about 90 seconds which felt like a victory right at the end.

More ice on the calves. Strength training with weights tomorrow night and the next run on Monday night. After that I will assess whether to do a fourth day of week 1 or progress to week two. Having not fully completed the running portions of any one run yet, I will probably do the former.

I'll do some heel and toe lifts as well as calf raises to see if that helps.

2.33 km @8:55/km

My vitals are:
178.8lbs (-1.2lbs), Body Fat 25.0% (-0.7%), BMI: 25.7 (Overweight -0.1).

Friday, 11 February 2011

C25k Week 1 Day 1

For those of you who don't know, the Couch to 5k program (C25k) is an immensely popular fitness program that comes in a few different forms (8-12 weeks typically) and aims to take your average exercise-shy individual like me and to get them running a full 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) by the end of the program. In reality for many, they don't actually reach the distance target, but instead they will still be able to run for a full 30 minutes non-stop which, lets be honest is something that is beyond 80% of the population.

I have NEVER run or jogged in my life and I am very unfit at the moment. At the age of 31 and two kids later I am frankly starting to feel that I am not a 20 year old lad who can eat and drink what he wants with no cost. Over the past two years, I have grown a podgy belly. Having been skinny as a rake all my life, this has been a shocking transformation I can assure you. The thing I have noticed most is just going up a couple of flights of stairs is an experience that leaves me short of breath. I have decided that this actually sucks and I need to do something about it for the sake of me and my family. I want to be able to run around with my children as they grow and live to a ripe age to do the same with my grandchildren.

Enter C25k. I've chosen the 9 week version advertised by and the NHS. The first week of this plan see the willing participant walk briskly for 5 minutes to warm up and then alternate 60 seconds jogging with 90 seconds walking 8 times for a total of 20 minutes.

I decided to just get on and do this last Monday to see what running outside was like. Just armed with a watch, my usual pair of trainers and a hoodie top. I think to be honest in the jogging bits, I just ran too fast. I was knackered after 10 minutes so I walked back home with my tail between my legs.

After doing a bit of research, learning about running shoes, pacing etc, I set out on Wednesday more prepared to take the jogging sessions very slowly (you are supposed to be able to hold a conversation whilst running) and finding a proper pair of running shoes. I did both of these and also downloaded the week 1 NHS podcast to help with timings etc for the run. Unfortunately for me, Monday's run seems to have damaged my calf muscles somewhat. They had felt in bad condition on the day and I was in pain even after the brisk walk. About 9 minutes in and facing an uphill section of the run, I just couldn't do it. My shins and calves were struggling to hobble back home. I noticed half way at this point that I had also locked my ipod and thus the GPS signal so the "running" part I did was not even tracked. The only relatively pleasing aspect is that I didn't feel at all puffed out after the few running stints I managed so that encourages me that I can get through this with pacing and a working body.

So the stats are out because of GPS user error, but it tracked me at:
2.1km @10:32/km

My vitals are:
180lbs, Body Fat 25.7% (ouch!), BMI: 25.8 (Overweight).

I am desperate for my calves to recover for my run tomorrow after a what has been a two day rest. They are better but still twinging when I walk. I am relying on ice packs (that is bags of green beans) to help. I've got another 20 odd hours before run 2!