Tuesday, December 29, 2009

And So It Begins......Training Like a Turtle

That long painful process of getting back into shape. It is the time that you want to kick yourself in the a#$ (if you could only reach back there) for getting out-of-shape in the first place. It is the time when you vow to yourself that you will never, ever, under any circumstances let yourself get out of shape again. 

Reese and I went for a run today. Since I have off this week I wanted to get a jump on it when we could head out during the day. It was a good run. We are starting off at a mile and will run that distance for about 3 weeks and then move up. I used to use the 10% rule which is that you only increase your distance each week by 10% of what you were previously running.  However, that never worked well for me. It seemed that if I missed a run or two during the week - oh the horror of a missing workout!  Yes I have missed workouts and lived to tell about it. When I was a diehard runner then it would bother me, make me feel guilty and such, but not anymore. So with the 10% rule if I missed a few days I would sometimes feel that I wasn't ready to increase my distance or I would increase it too fast for how many runs I got in that week.

Using the three week rule before moving up works well for me, especially in Winter in MN when there may be days that we cannot run because of the cold, ice, too much snow etc. But over a three week period we should be fine. The snow also helps provide some cushion for my hips and feet and for Reese as we get back into running. As our distance gets longer Reese will need to be running on a softer surface than the street or sidewalk as that will be too hard on her joints. At that point we will have to find a park or a sidewalk where she can run along side me on the grass or snow covered field. Okay but lets be realistic here. I run or jog fast and Reese, well - she trots! Still the sustained repetative motion she is doing can cause injuries so we are taking it slow for both of us. I would much rather have her running off leash while I run so she can go at her own pace, but that isn't possible where I live right now. So she will have to make due with running with me. 

I will also be stretching Reese and myself really well and I will be doing some Yoga stretches to keep my old hip injury from returning. Yoga helped get rid of it and so did rest, like two years worth of rest. So my plan is to train like a Turtle - slow and steady wins the raise.  Or in my case I hope it just allows me to continue to train. 

Why the sudden interest in getting in shape. Well there are a number of reasons...
1. Jeans are starting to get a bit tight
2. I was winded after running Reese over the A-frame at our lesson a few weeks ago. Reese was running or shall we say flying over the A-frame (that girl can get way too much air, which is why she won't be doing the A-frame for awhile.) and I was running on the flat past it huffing and puffing.
3. Both Reese and I need to build up our stamina for both agility and herding. Especially if Reese is going to work the sheep on the hill at our trainers sometime next year. My intention is that she will be gathering the sheep from the hill without my assistance other than from my whistle commands. But of course since I am a realist I know that there may be an occasion for me to have to tromp up the hill with her.
4. Whistles. My homework for the winter for herding is to get my whistles good enough to start using when Reese is ready to learn them. Whistles will take air - something I apparently don't have much of these days.
5. I was doing the Houla Hoop on the Wii Fit the other night. Disclaimer - this is my worst activity on the Wii Fit. This is supposed to be an aerobic activity and it is. But I usually only get about 25 circles of the hoop in and then it falls to my feet ending my game. True to form, I think I hit 24 circles of the hoop and I was done. Done with the game but I proceeded to wheez and spend the next few minutes trying to catch my breath. NOT GOOD.

Yes I have some extra pounds to lose but I am not worried about those. They always peel off quickly from running - I guess its all those previous years of running that helps my body remember. I do want to get back to my running weight though. It will just make all the activities Reese and I do so much easier. But I'm not in a hurry, it will come, not even going to keep track of it. Just have to keep plugging down the road.

So how did it go today. It went well, did I run the whole mile continuously, no. Reese (thank you Reese) had to stop and piddle a few times. That gave me a good chance to catch my breath a bit. Then we were off again. I overdressed so will be more careful tomorrow. It was between 9 and 15 degrees depending on what weather station you went by, plus there was a bit of a windchill. Yes you can overheat running in the winter in Minnesota. The trick is layers, but not too many. You should be slightly chilled when you get outside. If you are just right when you step out than you have too many layers on.

Reese's paws have been doing great in the snow and cold so far. At least when we put her paw wax on. There was one night I didn't put it on and we only got about a half a block away and she was lifting her feet.
is the paw wax we use and it is amazing. So far it has done what is says, helps with the cold, no snowballs between the toes and makes for an enjoyable walk.

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