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The advantages of taking up running

01/31/12 | by Tom [mail] | Categories: Uncategorized

Running is a fantastic cardiovascular exercise if you are looking to tone up, get fit and strengthen your legs. If you are thinking about joining a gym or a running club, then you might be interested in reading all about the advantages of running.

If you have decided to turn your lifestyle around by eating very healthily and exercising every evening after work, then you are sure to deserve a well earned relaxing weekend where you can take it easy and let your legs recuperate, or even chill out with a game of partypoker and a small indulgent dessert. One advantage of taking up running is that it increases your metabolism, which means you burn more calories each time you exercise; so enjoying a nice meal or a dessert once or twice a week shouldn't make you feel guilty at all. But what other advantages are there to running?

1. Running can in fact help delay the ageing process - regular runners do not have as much muscle or bone loss in comparison to non-runners. In addition, running pumps blood around the body and face, giving you a natural and healthy glow.

2. Regular running helps to strengthen your heart and lower your blood pressure, which can reduce the risk of heart attacks.

3. Running is one of the highest calorie burning exercises. It is estimated that you burn around 100 calories per mile, so if you run 3 or 4 miles, this clocks up to around 400 calories, which is roughly the equivalent to a big bowl of hearty pasta.

4. If you want to challenge yourself during your workout, try running uphill or jog up a few flights of stairs. This will strengthen your muscles and your heart, as well as toning up your thighs and arms. When you run uphill, remember to slightly reduce your pace to avoid getting too out of breath.

Ever have one of those runs

06/27/11 | by Tom [mail] | Categories: Uncategorized

where everything just clicked? I had one this morning.  For the past several months, I have been stuck at around a 9:45 - 10:00 pace. Some of it has been due to weight, and some of it has probably been a little mental, just not able to push through like I have in the past. That has all been improving lately. I have lost about 15lbs so far with about another 15 or so to go, and mental attitude toward running has gotten better.

Saturday I had a run of 5 miles. It was a good run, but nothing overly spectacular. My pace was an average of 9:49 with average HR of 161 and a max of 174. Like I said, nothing stellar there, just a good run. This morning when the alarm went off at 5:00 am, I wasn't overly excited about climbing out of bed, but after hitting the snooze once, I knew I would feel better if I did and regret it if I didn't, so I crawled out and got ready.

I arrived at the gym about 6:00 am and was on the TM by about 5 after. I started out with a quarter mile at 12 mpm warm up. after that I kicked it on up to 10 mpm. My HR was still only around 134 at the end of the first mile, and I was breathing entirely to easy for my norm, so I kicked the TM on up to a 9:00 mpm pace for mile 2. At the end of mile 2 my HR was still only 142, so for mile 3 I increased it on up to an 8:00 mpm pace. At the end of that 3rd mile, I had still only gotten to a 154 HR, and my breathing was barely elevated. Had I had more time, I think I could have easily done another mile at a 7:30 mpm pace if not better. I ended up finishing that 3 miles with an average pace of 8:49. That's my best average pace in well over a year.

Carmel Half marathon

06/08/11 | by Tom [mail] | Categories: Uncategorized

Running the inaugural Carmel half marathon this weekend. I think I'm ready for it as long as the heat and rain don't get the best of me. Hoping to better my time over the Indy 500 Festival half from a few weeks ago which shouldn't be to hard.

42nd Annual Sam Costa half Marathon

03/30/11 | by Tom [mail] | Categories: Uncategorized

This was my first half marathon of the year and my first running of this event, so I wasn't real sure of what to expect. I don't normally eat anything pre-race, but this morning I had a pure protein bar. Perhaps I should have eaten more, but I just didn't want anything setting heavy on my stomach at the start.

I arrived at the start, Northview Church, in Carmel at 7:30 am for a 9:00 start as they only have race day packet pickup. Had to make sure I got a parking spot since this was the first time running this event. I was glad to see they had the church open and packet pickup was indoors as it was a cool 29 degrees out doors with a pretty decent wind blowing. Wasn't looking forward to that at race time. Packet pickup went without a hitch, now just over an hour to wait until race time. I decided to put the time to use for stretching.

So it starts getting close to start time, and we all line up. There were 476 finishers at the start, not to bad for a lesser known half marathon. Race started about 3 minutes late, I can handle that, at least it wasn't 15 minutes or something crazy while standing out there in the cold. Then we were off.

My main goal was to just not try to go out to hard. Wanted to keep my pace between around 9:45 and 10:45 for the race. This race is mostly through some nice subdivisions, so I am just trying to take it easy and take in some of the scenery. First mile cam in at 9:37, a little faster than I wanted for my warmup mile, but not to bad. Mile 2 came in at 10:00 even. I'm feeling pretty good here and starting to get more comfortable with the cold temps.

Mile 3 found me struggling a little, and ended up at a 10:54 pace. Time to focus. After mile 3 you kind of get out of subdivisions for a while and it becomes more farmland and some wooded areas. The change of scenery seemed to help get my focus of my aches and pains. Mile 4 finished at a 10:03. Mile 5 and 6 are more of the same with a 10:32, and a 9:52.

Most of this course is on city streets and roads with a little traffic, and most of mile 7 saw this traffic increase, but it seemed to work with us. They did have plenty of officers and volunteers holding traffic for us at intersections though, so it wasn't to bad. Once we got turned onto 146th st, we had a sidewalk to run on which was good as that is one busy street. Mile 7 finished at a 10:38. Mile 8 was more sidewalk along 146th, and I was really starting to feel the pounding in my legs and I actually had to walk a bit through here. I finished 8 in an 11:07.

From here on, it is all sub-divisions. Also from here on, I am feeling it. I was tryng to keep my mind occupied and off the pain, and it worked for a while. Mile 9 came in at a 10:53. Not to far off my target pace. It started to fall apart from there. I began having to walk more and more, and as a result, mile 10 was an 11:18, mile 11 was 11:21, 12 at a 11:28 pace, and mile 13 at 12:09.

Thank god I'm almost there, only a tenth or so to go. Unfortunately that tenth was all uphill. I finished the last .17 at an 11:21 pace. That was just sheer determination to get the pain over with.

Final finish time was 2:21:55 which was a 10:46 pace. Just outside the top of my desired pace range, but I can live with that. This was my first half since April 2010, so I'm not gonna beat myself up about it. I'll take it for what it is, another training run to help get ready for the 500 Festival Mini Marathon.

Thanks for taking time to read my ramblings.

It's been a hot one.

08/24/10 | by Tom [mail] | Categories: Uncategorized

I don't know about you all, but the heat has really been keeping me down. 95+ degree days just isn't any fun especially with crazy humidity to boot. I've been trying to get to the gym, but that hasn't been convenient. It works ok if I go on the way home from work, but to get ready to run and have to drive over to the gym and then back just to run on a TM. eh. I just really prefer to run outside. I'm really glad that the temps are starting to head back down. Just don't want them plummiting to friggin fast.

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Mainly for tracking my daily workouts and what not on my quest to run my way from a beginning Louisville runner to the Boston Marathon by way of Kentucky Derby Festival Mini and Marathons. Maybe even Chicago or NYC along the way. If you're going to dream, dream big.

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