Filtering by Tag: gym

I ran on a treadmill and the world didn't end.

I hate getting emails with a sentence as a subject line and nothing in the body of the email. It would be like writing a headline with no blog entry. That's kind of how I feel about this blog title. I don't need to provide context, but then I'd hate myself later on.

So a few things about running on a treadmilll ...

* My outdoor-only running streak has ended at around 4 years.

* I joined a cheap gym.

* I joined that gym because I've been very tired in the early mornings with my baby working his way toward a schedule and with the sun setting earlier this time of year my neighbor hood is crazy dark at night.

* I actually liked it. Sure it was only 10 minutes, but I was quickly reminded at how I can do a variety of speedwork on the treadmill that I may not normally try on the road.

I have several other reasons for doing all this, but what's important is I survived and don't feel any worse for having run on a treadmill. And the world didn't end and hell didn't freeze over. At least not yet.

I could use a treadmill right now

One of the unfortunate parts of moving and being in limbo with a few things is the fact I don't have access to a gym. That's really not a huge problem considering I never used a gym until October 2008, but I realize now how much I enjoyed being a member of one. Especially now. All this complaining I've done in the past decade of not having snows is catching up to me -- we've had two big winter storms here this season and tonight it's sleeting and snowing. And this weekend there's something in the forecast. I won't speculate too much, but SOMEBODY IS LYING. The weather guys aren't saying what the rumor mill is saying. This happened last weekend and the rumor mill was right. Anyway, last night I tried to go out to get something in and it just didn't work. What little of the sidewalks were scraped were icy. The main road was fine, but it was too dark to run on that for too long. The nearby side roads were poor shape too. So after nearly falling a few times, I hung it up after 2 miles. The risk of serious injury wasn't worth it.

So right now I'm in a mind frame of just getting something in whenever I can this week. I have what looks like two good days ahead of me and I plan to take full advantage of that. I'm a snow-lover and running in the snow is a ton of fun, but I'm ready for spring.

My not-quite 24-hour gym

When my gym moved earlier this year and became a mostly 24-hour facility, I never realized that they closed on Sunday nights for all of 8 hours. I wanted to get a solid cross-training workout in tonight, but when I arrived at the gym shortly after 7:30, I discovered that the gym closes at 8 p.m. They open back up at 4 a.m. Monday and then stay open until late Friday. I know that the gym isn't a high-demand facility on a Sunday night, but this all just seems weird to me. I still managed to get in a quick, but intense 20 minutes on the elliptical -- a nice way to close off this week. Despite packing, doing a yard sale and spending some much-needed quality time with my almost year-old son, I got in some good runs -- 3 runs of 3 miles or more and another 2.2 miler. It's my first double-digit week in a while since I had put more focus on cross training recently (and a focus on moving).

* * *

Anyway, I have one more day off before I start my new job in Lynchburg and I'll be staying in Bedford for a short time until my housing situation takes care of itself. Either way, I'm looking forward to tackling these hills this fall and winter to get ready for whatever I do next year. With all this moving around and so much going on, I'm not sure at this point in my plans for next year will still hold. I haven't signed up for Shamrock yet -- I want to do it, but my bank account may say otherwise by the end of the year (when the race usually sells out). I just have to wait and see what happens.

Random Thoughts to Close September

* If you missed my comment, I did go to the doctor on Tuesday. I have no damage to the eye, but I am currently using some eye drops that are like pouring salt onto an open wound ... in my eye. I still have some blurry vision, but at least it looks better. It looks like three days after getting punched in the eye instead one day later. And if you have no idea what I'm talking about, click here to read about the incident. * This fourth week of 100 push-ups is tough. Very tough. Like "girl" push-up tough. But I like the new phrasing -- "alternative" push-ups. I would say in my two workouts this week 80 percent of the push-ups have been "good form," but I've had to drop to my knees for some. It's still one hell of a workout though. I closed out tonight with 30 good-form push-ups and felt great. All told I did 115 push-ups tonight.

* Speaking of 100 push-ups, do a search on Twitter for #100pushupsrva - I've started a movement in Richmond. More details on that soon, I hope.

* I haven't had a solid run in Bedford for almost a year. I'll get that opportunity this weekend. Looking forward to the "loop" and then some.

* I'm done with monthly roundups. At least for now. I'm tired of focusing on numbers and that's what monthly roundups were becoming. Looking ahead to 2010, my goals need to become more focused than gathering up a lot of miles. I'm going to miss my mileage goals for this year and I'm really fine with that. Unless I set out to 1,000 running miles in a year, I don't see why I need to get caught up in all that. Simple numbers don't reflect how successful I feel. I'll probably still report out at the end of the year what my mileage numbers were, and I'll continue to log every little tenth of a mile, but I just don't want it to be a focus anymore. I want to pay more attention to numbers with speed or tempo runs or long runs.

* Speaking of speed, I had a pretty good session tonight at the gym. Two half-mile intervals that started at an 8-minute mile pace and ended at a 7:30 pace and a 1-mile interval/tempo run at 7:30. It felt great to push myself for that mile and to have a speed workout for a third straight week.

Details, please

One of the unexpected things to come out of doing the 100 push-ups program is how much more it is making me pay attention to my other workouts. I've admittedly been frustrated with myself for getting into a dull routine of things this summer, but now that I've put the Rock 'n' Roll Half behind me and moved on to something new, I feel more focused. Perhaps it's a quality vs. quantity thing ... or maybe it's a quality AND quantity thing. Whatever it is, each workout feels like it has a meaning to it and I feel like making each workout different from the previous one. And I feel like writing more about each workout too. I feel like I'm holding myself more accountable when I do this. So that leads me to last night. I wouldn't exactly call it a speed workout, but in a roundabout way it was. I headed over to the gym, hopped on the treadmill and started off at a leisurely 10-minute mile pace - 6 mph. My goal for the workout was simple - run 2 miles and increase my speed by 0.1 mph each tenth of a mile. That meant slowly increasing my speed to 8 mph, a 7:30-minute mile pace. While this was a relatively short run, this was a high quality run. My main goal was to push myself and run faster, but do it in a comfortable way. A treadmill allows me to do such a thing, even if I really don't like it. It was a good transition run to get used to the treadmill again and it was nice to have that steady increase.

As far as the quantity side of things went last night, I then got off the treadmill after a cool down of about a quarter mile and then got on the bike for an easy 5 mile ride.

***

Tonight my focus once again turned to the 100 push-ups challenge. I did sets of 14, 19, 14, 14 and a max of 20, and sweated like I ran 5 miles. All in all it went pretty well. It is amazing to me to think that not even a month ago I could only do 15 push-ups -- 15 that weren't even that good -- and tonight I did 81 total. I'm not one to pat myself on the back, but I love this program. I've also managed to get a few virtual friends on Twitter to do this too -- I'll have a blog entry on that soon. So ... what's your excuse to not do it? :)