How to Get Started

 

How did it all begin? Where did I start from? Am I one of those annoying people that “just started” but can already run a 5k in 24 minutes?

Well!
Let. Me. Tell. You!

I am slow. I am a very slow runner. I have never been fast, but I am building speed. SLOWLY! It’s not easy when you’ve never been a very good runner, then you decide to start one day. It’s so easy to expect that you’ll be good at it in no time.. But that isn’t how reality works. We have to chip away at things to become good at them, and unfortunately for me, without a good base of fitness to work from, I was starting at square one!

So I started running just after my 28th birthday this year (which I mentioned in my previous post), and began like everyone else in these technological times: with the C25K app (I also used the Zombies, Run! app as a run-tracker and for a little extra motivation).
C25K is great for building up that base of fitness, enough to get you in the habit of running, and enough to get you to run continuously (if slowly) without stopping or walking.

I began by running around my neighbourhood for 20-30 minutes at a time, using the prompts from the C25K app to begin running or walking.
After a few weeks of that, I added my own extra running schedule in, and once I had completed the program I was able to run 6km without dying so I signed up for a 10k! (because obviously)

I raised a bunch of money for the race, trained my little butt off and ran the race, and it was… fine. I didn’t die, but I didn’t love it. It was something to do to keep me motivated to train.

The problem was that I was not training toward anything other than “be able to run 10 km without collapsing”. Which I did!

giphy (3)

After the charity run, I lagged. I gave myself a couple of days off, then went for a couple of short runs around the block and claimed my virtuousness of having “been on a run”, as we do. But I’d lost the passion, and the driving force of knowing I would have failed if I couldn’t make it to the finish line.

So I stopped bothering to run as much, or as far, and within a month I was running maybe twice a week (on a good week) for maybe 3 km at a time. And it SUCKED! I sucked. The world sucked and I hated every part of those runs.

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I finally worked out why! I had no driving force! I wasn’t running because if I didn’t I’d be eternally embarrassed to face all of my friends and family that had donated money and support, or because I knew if I didn’t make it my friends all waiting at the finish line would think I was a complete loser. I had no reason to run!

So I decided to make running my reason. To run is my reason now. I need it. I have used it to make my life better, other than the already stated benefits of running, I can also eat a bunch more and not feel guilty! My clothes fit better! My house is cleaner! I’m more organised! So many amazing benefits all from having this routine based around going for a simple run in the morning, or not getting drunk on a Friday night so that I can do a longer run on a Saturday.
So many damned benefits!
So now I’m running because I want to improve, and be fitter, and so that I can get all of the other benefits, as well as having that general base of fitness to work off if I do want to train for something big, without having to start from scratch.

Why do you run? Do you set a goal to work toward so that you have to train? Or are you able to motivate yourself to run regardless of what is happening?
Do you have any tips for how to keep going? Or how to begin?

P.s. This post should really be titled:

How I Got Started and the Many Mistakes I Encountered and How Much of a Motivator Guilt & Potential Shame Are

But it isn’t. Because I wanted you all to think that I’m going to impart some wisdom on you.

P.p.s. I hope you did glean some kind of information from my ramblings!

Consistency in Training

How to stay consistent with a new training schedule? (November challenge series)

How to Stay Consistent With a Training Schedule?

(November Challenge Series)

Do you ever look at fitness bloggers/Instagrammers and think “How the f*** do they keep it up?!”?
Consistency. They have the ability to keep promises to themselves and stay consistent.

This month I am trying to focus on my consistency as much as building endurance and losing body fat because the most challenging thing for me is trying to stay consistent, and actually keeping my promises to myself.

Have you ever started a new fitness regime and you think you’re doing so well, and then you just forget about it one day, then the next, then the next, and before you know it you’re sitting on the couch eating an entire bag of chips, after another week of no exercise?

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(P.s chips are life and sitting on the couch eating an entire bag is totally fine by me)

Yep. It’s frustrating, I know it. And it’s so easy to get defeated and quit at that point.
That is why I am focusing so much on consistency this month.
Keeping myself accountable is the most important part of my schedule, I need to make sure that if I HAVE to miss a day, that I will then have to make it up by adding extra km’s to my next run, or by making it up throughout the rest of the week. I need to make it to my km goal by the end of the week!

It IS hard though, and I’ve fallen off the wagon more times than I can count, and sometimes it is HARDER after you’ve just met a goal! It’s so much easier to stay motivated when you’re working toward something, and once you’ve reached the goal being able to ease off a bit (or a lot)!

So this month, I am holding myself accountable for every workout and every km. If I miss one, I have to make sure I add it in somewhere else and try to maintain CONSISTENT!

#consistencyiskey

Do you ever lack motivation? Or are you like me and struggle with sticking to a plan unless there’s a deadline? Let me know in the comments, or find me on my Instagram or Twitter! @thecrappyrunner

Setting Goals: November

November has been the month for me to return to running. After a successful few months from July to September I was training regularly, and preparing for the 10Km race that I participated in, but once that was over I seemed to lose all of my drive.

Obviously, it makes sense, the competition and the challenge was over, so I didn’t have to push myself anymore. I’ve seen it all over the internet, that once you’ve reached a goal, the best thing you can do is set another one ASAP!

Well… I didn’t. I got lazy, and I allowed my fitness to slide, again.

So now that I’m reinvigorated, I’ve decided to set some real (achievable) goals for this month leading up to a proper training schedule for a half marathon in April.

 The Schedule

November’s focus: Endurance, conditioning (losing body fat %), consistency

Week 1:
Monday – 5km regular pace
Tuesday – 5km intervals
Wednesday – 5km regular pace
Thursday – 20 min tempo run (fast)
Friday – 5km regular pace / can be interchanged with Saturday long run
Saturday – 7km “long” run

Total: 27 – 30km

Week 2:
Monday – 5km regular pace
Tuesday – 5km intervals
Wednesday – 5km regular pace
Thursday – 20 min tempo run (fast)
Friday – 5km regular pace / can be interchanged with Saturday long run
Saturday – 8km “long” run

Total: 28 – 31km

Week 3:
Monday – 5km regular pace
Tuesday – 5km intervals
Wednesday – 5km regular pace
Thursday – 20 min tempo run (fast)
Friday – 5km regular pace / can be interchanged with Saturday long run
Saturday – 9km “long” run

Total: 29 – 32km

Week 4:
Monday – 5km regular pace
Tuesday – 5km intervals
Wednesday – 5km regular pace
Thursday – 20 min tempo run (fast)
Friday – 5km regular pace / can be interchanged with Saturday long run
Saturday – 10km “long” run

Total: 30 – 33km

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#ENDS

Saturday Run Log: Getting back into it

Today was one of those perfect Canberra days: a slight breeze, and sunshine from 6am til 7pm. Unfortunately for me, I am at the tail end of the semester and have had four assignments due in one week.
So after submitting three of my assignments throughout the week, and with one to go, I decided to go for a run!

Setting: Local run around the neighbourhood
Distance: 5.01km
Time: 36:01
Average Pace: 7:11 /Km

Tunes: Spotify Playlist: “Zombies, Run!” by RIAVEG8 (Continued with this one, and surprisingly, it got better! 70’s rock makes running ok)

Continued with the Zombies, Run! missions released with Call of Duty and this episode had some more interesting parts to it, though it was still less exciting than I’d hoped, I’ve decided to persevere through them since I’d already started.

The Run
: It felt nice to get out of the house and into the sunshine. We’ve been AirBnb’ing our spare room, so I’d spent most of the day preparing the house for a new guest and listening to lectures. It was nice to get out into the sunshine. My lungs didn’t start burning straight away, and it was good to stretch my legs after the run yesterday, which left my glutes and hammies pretty tight!

Thoughts during:

  • I’m glad I put on sunscreen
  • Doubling up on the sports bra was a good idea
  • Tights will always will v. shorts for running
  • Eating lunch was another good idea
  • Eff me it’s hot
  • Should have thought about hydration
  • How far have I gone??!
2L drink bottle post run
2L isn’t enough sometimes, so you have to steal someone else’s