Where would we be nowadays without techie gadgets? There are apps for literally EVERYTHING! I discovered this wonderful iPhone app in December called Walkmeter. For those of you unfamiliar with this fab little app, it is basically a pedometer, but it's linked to GPS so is much more reliable that the old fashioned type. It does the basic stuff like record your time, distance and calories and I thought for less than £1 it was a pretty good option. Little did I know what a fantastic little app this would be!
I must admit, I'm only just now getting to grips with all it does and literally yesterday, after I had returned from my first 'official' C25K training session, I discovered that Walkmeter has a training programme installed in the app! Even though you're supposed to have a day to rest in the C25k programme, I couldn't wait to get out there and try Walkmeter's version, so that's precisely what I did today. I took along my stopwatch because although the description tells you what you're about to be doing, I wasn't sure I would know to start running and stop. Well, I popped in the headphones and needn't have worried! Walkmeter literally tells you (through the headphones) when you're doing your warm-up walk, when to run, when to walk and when you're doing your cool-down. I'm actually starting to think that this £1 was the best I've ever spent!
Well, I didn't set out just now to wax lyrical about my stellar app choices - actually I wanted to write about my first two training sessions and how I'm finding running. I started running quite a few years ago when I lost over 100 pounds previously. When I started that diet/exercise routine, I was initially walking only but when I saw how many calories you can burn running, I decided to give it a try. At the time, we didn't have all the technology that we have right now (I think I had a very antiquated iPod and even that was a luxury), and I entered into the activity without much knowledge about how to improve my running. I would literally start running and stop when I felt I was going to die. When I caught my breath again I would start running again and repeat the process. There was no science to it - I didn't run for one minute, walk for one minute, and unfortunately I just never progressed from there. A series of misfortunes stopped me running - firstly I was in a serious car accident and suffered severe whiplash. Running after that was extremely painful. A short time after that my mother in law became critically ill and because of the increased responsibility that came with it (my father in law and mother in law lived with us), my weight began to creep back on and the running became a distant memory.
I don't know that I ever thought about running again, frankly, until I stumbled across Katie's blog, Runs for Cookies. I was seriously inspired both by her weight loss and her continued progress with running. Reading her blog made me think, 'Heck, I can do that too!" - so what did I do within the first few days of finding her blog - I signed up for my first 5k! Initially I planned to run the whole thing, but once again, things conspired against me. From March to April this year I battled a bad lung infection and it took me literally AGES to get over it! Walking from the car to the classroom to get my kids from school had me out of breath - it was not a nice experience! But thankfully, I recovered and managed to at least run the downhill sections of Race for Life in May. Now, I have signed up for another 5k race at the end of August and my C25k training for this has officially begun!
Walkmeter recommends a 10 week programme, so I am literally just on target. Running for one minute is so far OK - it has not brought any major difficulties. Running for longer periods, we'll have to wait and see! The loop that I generally use for walking exercise has quite a lot of ups and downs and surprisingly I am able to cope with running uphill. I am just taking it very slow and trying not to go too fast!
So, I have three more days left of the 30 Day Shred. I have ordered another Jillian Michael's DVD - 'Banish Fat & Boost Metabolism' which I'm hoping will arrive before Tuesday so I can move straight onto that. I'm thinking that I will do the DVD three days per week and the C25k training three days per week - that way I'm getting some weight training and arm/ab workouts in with the cardio of the C25k. And I'm hoping, of course, through all of this, that the weight will just fall off! Well - we shall see :-)