Sunday, July 29, 2012

Uphill Climb

For a time, running was easy. I can complete a 5K run in less than 35 minutes. I would do this by running about 1km straight, then a short walk, then do a sprint again. It can be defined in the running community as an easy run, because I didn't go "all in" by running the entire distance.

But that was before... Given all the changes in my life right now - mid-shift, getting married, new work... it is an uphill battle. Everytime I try to make a battle plan on how to deal with weight loss and getting to practice for my next 21K, something happens and I have to go back to the start. NO EXCUSES.

It's hard. I would like to tell you guys that there is a short cut to losing those stubborn weight but there is no shortcut. There are no miracle potions to lose those flabs. It will be a test of patience and self-control with a little (or a lot) test of endurance as well.

They say that if you want to run fast you need to run uphill. All you have to do is run those 10 seconds uphill - as fast as you can. According to the experts this develops speed and muscle power. I compare my fitness "jump start" to this running tip. I have this in my training plan:
  • 3 minutes walk (warm-up)
  • 2x 2 minutes rowing
  • 5 minutes running
    • 1 minute (straight) @ 1% incline and 7.5 km/hr
    • 30 secs  (straight) @ 1% incline and 9.5 km/hr
    • 1 minute (straight) @ 5% incline and 6.5 km/hr
    • 1 minute (straight) @ 1% incline and 6.5 km/hr
    • 30 secs  (straight) @ 1% incline and 7.5 km/hr
    • 30 secs (straight) @ 1% incline and 9.5 km/hr
    • 30 secs (straight) @ 1% incline and 6.5 km/hr
  • 2x 5 minutes Elliptical Cross Trainers @ minimum level 6
  • 2x 3 minutes Gym Stepper @ minimum level 6
  • 5 minutes walk (cool down)
It's my version of the 10 seconds uphill training. It's short and sweet - ok... not sweet (it's pretty tiring)! This is something that I will be doing at least 2x a week, in between running and weight training. It's not something that will take a big chunk of my time, but for now it will be enough to lose a few pounds (hopefully) and help me become more efficient in my running.

Wish me luck? :)

      Wednesday, May 30, 2012

      Changes and Milestones

      It's been almost 3 years since my last post. A part of me feels rather ashamed to leave this cyber real estate inactive. To my 2-3 "followers" (ehem ehem i think it's safe to say loyal friends?), I apologize for the lack of updates.

      Enough about the past, it's now time to put this blog back in business. Quick updates! Well from September 2009, there have been several 5K runs... then I moved up and did my first 10K run. I would have loved to have written about each of those runs, but right now I don't think I have the time or enough things to say about each event. But I would like to share that going from 5K to 10K was indeed a milestone.

      From 5K to 10K
      I think this milestone felt like my first run. I initially thought I couldn't finish the 5K run and if I did there is this possibility I would have finished it in about 2 hours. Thank goodness. The transition from 5K to 10K wasn't easy, I tried to psych myself by thinking it's just doing 2 5K runs! More kilometers for my money! But no... this is not the case. And I am telling you 5K runners thinking of going up to 10K, do practice hard before your run. Plan ahead. Practice! Practice! Practice! The first 5K was a breeze, then when you go reach the 7.5K mark you end up thinking "Why did I sign up for this?" You feel tired, grumpy, and you just want to rest. The last 2.5K felt like it will never end. But when you reach that finish line... that awesome moment when you see the sea of people, the timer, the big banner... adrenaline kicks in and you just sprint to the finish line.

      Well this narrative is just something from my experience. I think other people go from 5K to 10K without any effort at all. ;)

      Other updates
      Well after that 10K, I did a 21K and a few more 5K/10K/21K runs... The weight has gone up and down (pffft!). And in between those runs a few big things happened in my life, to summarize:
      1. I resigned from my job
      2. Stayed home for a few months
      3. Got a new job
      4. Got engaged
      5. Got promoted
      6. Got married
      7. Resigned
      8. Got a new job - my first ever "local" company
      I think this means I need to change the title of my blog from "From Couch Potato to 5K Runner" to "Couch Potato Runner" - because I am still a couch potato, and I still run. This blog started with a goal of running a 5K distnce... Now I am aiming for something more... I am starting my 21K training again this coming June. From there I need to conquer all the "hurdles" of my previous 21K runs (blisters, etc.) and finish a 21K better than my previous record. From there I will train for a 32K run, and eventually I hope to conquer a 42K... Yes... a full marathon!!! And in the far far far future... I am hoping that I can join T2N. ;)

      That's it for now... I hope you can join me in the next few months or years as I try to document my runs and possibly a few stuff about my life here in this blog.

      Passé une bonne journée!

      Saturday, September 5, 2009

      No More Flu!

      No more flu! Hurrah!

      I’ve had the flu since last Tuesday, I got home from the gym feeling really groggy... So I just plopped myself on the bed, lay there, and slept for hours. When I woke up I had a fever and everything was aching. Uh oh. By Wednesday I was already feeling guilty for being in bed most of the time. I HAD to run, I was following a Nike+ program for a 5k run. Sadly, I had no choice but stay in bed and try to get my strength back. Thursday morning came, I was feeling a bit better, so I dragged myself to the gym to do a 4km run. The thing is, after running 2km I was already feeling faint. Running with a clogged nose is not easy!!! After completing my first 2km, I rested for a bit and did another 2km run. I was feeling pretty happy with myself by the time I got home. But then I found out this was a very bad decision, by the afternoon I had a fever again. Chills and clogged nose until Friday.

      Thank goodness for Vit C, Stresstabs, and Neozep. Though taking meds meant there were times I’d be hibernating, it really did the trick. Tomorrow, I’m ready to run again. 5K here I come!

      Tuesday, September 1, 2009

      Tatakbo Ka Ba? GMA Network Fun Run

      Last August 30, 2009, I joined my first 5K run. This was not planned at all... It was more of "may takbo daw sa 30 sama ka?" (there's a run on the 30th, wanna join?)

      Yes, I am that impulsive. I just said "Ok sign me up!" and that was it. I had some weight training at the gym but I knew I still wasn't ready for a big 5K race. Running 1 km was a big effort for me, the usual joke when we play badminton was "Jamie move!" because I'd usually just stand in one area and wait for a shuttlecock that I can smash. Running 5 km is not something that I'd be able to do easily, that much I know.

      I trained a bit, pushed myself to run at least 2 km everytime I was at the gym. Before I'd do cardio for 15 minutes or so. But this time, I had to measure my runs in kilometers... I had to push myself to really run this time. I pushed myself to run even when my body was telling me that it was ok to just walk. I didn't want to be last in the race or worse, not finish the race at all! I had to time myself and set a goal on how long I'd be able to finish a 5K run. My goal was to finish the race in 40 minutes.

      Race day, really groggy with the lack of sleep... ADHD was kicking in, we were at the starting point and have been standing there for about 30 mins. I was grumpy and wondering when the race will start, if it didn't start in anopther 5 minutes I had a feeling I'd fall asleep.

      I had charged my iPod to keep my company throughout the race. I had my playlist to keep me "inspired" and energized as I ran. "Galit-galit muna" mode kicked-in as soon as they announced that it was time to run. iPod in near max volume, I started my run playing "Nobody" by the Wonder Girls. I left my friends walking while I did my thing. I jogged a bit, then I ran after 0.5 km. I was surprised with the number of people who joined the race, this makes running difficult because you had to overtake and zigzag through a wall of people at times... just like a jeepney in heavy Manila traffic. Additional hurdles were potholes and people waving at the camera, this turns a run into a walk. Gah. Stupid me didn't think to bring a water bottle while running, I was thinking I'd survive a water stop at the station (this alone will be a good motivation to reach the halfway mark hehe). I forgot to consider how many people will be stopping at the water stations and grabbing glasses, water, and vitwater to satisfy their parched throats. After a few minutes of joining the in on the commotion of getting a plastic cup and some water, I was back in the race holding my precious plastic cup with water. Reaching the turnaround point felt so good, I was thinking only 2.5km more to go and I would be at the finish line and I'd be able to grab a hearty breakfast. Nuh uh... It wasn't that easy... At the 3km point, I was feeling really tired... the lack of sleep was getting to me. But when some guy who at stepped on my foot when we reached the turnaround point overtook me, competitiveness kicked in. I ran til I reached the 4km point. By this time, my feet felt numb... It felt like my shoes have lost their soles. The finish line was so near, yet so far. Seriously, at this point I just wanted to sit at the pavement for a while. Thank you U2 for being the next artist in my iPod and playing "Elevation" "bahala na si batman!" I had to run, and finish this last kilometer with dignity! Hahaha bawal ang brisk walking! One of the best feelings in the world, reaching the finish line. And imagine my surprise that I finished the race with the time of 43 mins 29 secs, with all the stops and walks. Hah! So near my 40 mins target! Yehey!

      I can't wait for my next 5K run. :)


      Thank you muna sa sponsors! hehehe

      ... I would like to thank Nike for my running outfit and accessories! Also Nike the dog, for being so cute and adorable!

      ... Ipanema and Havaianas for my tsinelas!

      ... Thank you Vitwater... you know?

      ... Red Ribbon for the free mamon!

      ... Manong from the Fruit Stand for the energizing saging!

      ... Sinangag EXpress for our midnight snack!

      ... GMA 7 for the media coverage!

      From Couch Kamote to A Running Kamote

      Most people were really surprised that I've:
      • Joined a gym
      • Started running
      • Joined a 5K Fun Run
      Yes, I am that lazy. I love staying at home and just chillaxing. I haven't had activities these past years that could be defined as sports or exercise, unless DVD marathons are considered as sports now... hmmm. I gained a LOT of weight and I've started getting sick a lot. There are a lot of factors that got me into that life (or lack of it), then one day I realized that I had to do something about it. Not just for the sake of vanity and trying to be a size 0 (puhleeze! I will never be a size 0!), I decided to try to get up off the couch and try to move my lazy ass and do something about my fitness!

      A few months after joining a gym I lost a bit of weight, I can wear my old clothes again(*woot!*). I can run 2 minutes straight without fainting... I survived my first 5K run.

      Now this is me living my life. Back in the land of the living! Wish me luck!