Creeping up on the 5k!

I had full intentions of a full, multi-part workout tonight, but once I got to the gym, I just couldn’t force myself to do more than the minimum treadmill workout! Which turned out to be quite a challenge. We’re just under a month away from the 5k day and I’m feeling pretty good about it. I’ll be running it with two of my former roommates which is sure to be lots of fun! I’m hoping that when the time comes, the excitement of being in the race environment and my determination to run the whole time will keep my mental block against running any distance over .05 miles at bay. We’ll see soon enough!

Speaking of mental blocks against running, this seems like an appropriate time to talk about the Couch-to-5k program!  I had heard a lot of good things about this running routine and when I decided that I wanted to start running for races, I needed something to get me running on a regular basis (ha. Imagine that!) Granted, I would often go for very light runs on my own, but never anything that felt like it could ever amount to anything. Also, as time passed, I realized that my motivation to actually keep running past two or three minutes was next to nothing. I figured that I needed something that was already laid out for me that would give me specific goals for each running day– almost like homework. Couch-to-5k offered just that PLUS a reasonable and motivating end goal! For the last five weeks or so, I’ve been plowing right through the suggested walk/run intervals both outside and on a treadmill at the gym. Tonight’s run was 8 minutes of running, 5 minutes of walking and then 8 more minutes of running. There is also designated time for a warm-up/cool-down . For the running stretches, I had the treadmill set between 7.0 and 7.5 mph, but for the walking I stuck with 4 mph with a pretty steep incline. I was definitely feeling the burn by the end of the half hour!

I can’t recommend the Couch-to-5k nearly enough for anyone who wants to start running, but needs structure and a good goal. Also, if you have a smartphone, there is an app that you can download too that times everything for you and tells you exactly when to switch from walking to running, offers encouraging comments in the background and lets you play your favorite playlist in the background! (Also, you can choose which voice is coaching you through your workouts. There’s the friendly and bubbly Constance (my personal favorite). Or maybe you’d prefer the drill sergeant Block (he’s actually pretty scary. I suggest staying away from this one.) Anyway. Great program that’s actually super helpful! Even if you do have a running history (as I said, I definitely ran on my own before this, but not regularly and I definitely wasn’t gaining speed and strength like I am with this!)

When I got home from the gym, I was starving (what else is new?) So I decided to throw together one of my favorite combinations on a low-calorie “Coco Pop” (they’re sort of like giant rice cakes, but only 16 calories!)

Peanut Butter + Coconut = One of my very favorite combinations!

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