Building a base is the most important part of the beginning of any program. Two of the biggest mistakes made are doing too much early on in the build-up phase and running too fast.
The object of building a base is to slowly build up your aerobic conditioning. If this is done too quickly you will likely end up injured. Most newcomers make the mistake of overdoing it early on and never recover.
At the very beginning all running should be done at conversation pace. If you cannot speak coherently (assuming you could while not running) while running you are going too fast. Slow down and enjoy the run. Typically this would be about 60-75% of your maximum heart rate, but if you don’t have a heart-rate monitor or don’t want to be constantly checking your pulse the easiest thing to do is the talk test. If you cannot talk you are going too fast. The time for speed-work will come later in the program, right now your focus should be to get time on your feet running.
I’m not sure how long your program is and if you are starting from “scratch” but the base building should take about 3 months. You should increase your mileage each week by 10% during the building phase. That can be done by either increasing each of your runs, or if you are only running 3-4 times a week the easiest way to increase is to add an additional day of running. You should discuss your mileage with your coach and be careful to adjust as injury/illness/life changes your plans.
I have a LIST of important things going on in my life... continuously. To name a few they are.... me and my family, current jobs and future jobs. I have three part-time jobs now and two big projects coming-up this summer. The next 5 months are going to be crazy busy and hectic. I mention all things because too many times I have allowed all those things to control my life. Week two is ahead and I am ready to take on the ACTIVE challenge. My goal is to prioritize starting with me and my health. Without that, my health, I can not accomplish the tasks ahead. I am looking forward to being healthy, following the training program eating right and sleeping right. If I can get all that done successfully, I can accomplish my other goals. Thank you community for holding me accountable to me. Letty
Greetings Who Wants to Get Active team members! Welcome to week two of the program. Although things may still feel new and even a little awkward, you should start to sense the early feelings of feeling better. You might be sleeping more soundly, have more energy or have lost a few pounds. Try to keep track of the changes by writing them in a log or journal. The visual perks are evidence that this life changing stuff really works and can really come in handy on those low motivation days.
We all know there are no style points awarded during the race, however thinking about your form can make a siginificant difference in your performance and progression along the way. The next time you head out for your walk or run perform a head-to-toe inventory a few times during the session. By making just a few tweaks, you can conserve prescious energy which will allow you to move for a longer period of time at an easier effort level.
Head and eyes focused forward and looking to where you want to go (not down)
Relaxed shoulders (this is a big energy zapper)
Arm at a 90-degree bend and swinging naturally like a pendulum from the shoulders (not crossing the center line of your body)
Hand relaxed (not clenched)
Torso tall with your hips under your shoulders
(Runners) landing with short, quick strides under the hips (versus out in front of the body like walkes)
(Walkers) landing on the heel in front of the body and rolling through and pushing off the toes to maintain momemtum for the next stride
Like any sport, good form takes time and patience. The more you do it, the easier it will become. In your next workout, think through your inventory and start to gain a sense of your body as it moves forward. Small changes can make a huge difference in your form.
Speaking of change, happy March everyone! For those of us that are still in the snow and cold keep in mind that if you're heading outdoors, dress for the weather. Meaning, you need to wear less when you're moving because your body core temperature will rise as you move! We all have different barometers for temperature so I may be more comfy in capri-length tights until it hits the 60s, while someone else does better in shorts in the 50s. I saw a runner this weekend (32 degrees) wearing shorts and had a smile on his face! This is another great variable to keep track of in your log because come fall you'll be making the transition in reverse and heading into the cold weather. A general rule of thumb is to add 10-20 degrees to the current temperature (more if it is windy). You should feel chilled at the start. if you are toasty warm - guess what? You'll be pulling off the layers in a matter of minutes:) Many of you have already posted that exercising outdoors makes the time go by so much more quickly. I agree! Remember when you head outdoors to invest in a proper warm-up of 5 minutes at an easy to gradually brisk walking effort. This is a great way to warm the muscles, especially if you are a morning exerciser when the muscles are at their coldest and stiffest!
Something to sleep on...It is easy to focus on your exercise and food habits when it comes to losing weight, but did you know you could lose weight in your sleep? Yes, that's right! A Harvard study concluded that women who slept 5 hours or less per night were 32% more likely to gain 33 pounds or more over 16 years than women who slept 7 or more hours per night. When you sleep too little, the stress hormone cortisol can rise which can cause your body to accumulate belly fat, cause carbohydrate cravings and slow metabolism. As we progess through the program, think of this journey as a means to balancing your life and focusing on all aspects of your health. Balance is the key to maintaining wellness (and happiness).
I had a great week one. It was so nice to get out of the house and run. I felt great all week. My energy level was up and so was my mood. After exercising, I always feel so great. I ate really well and made several yummy recipes. My favorite recipe of last week was the Shrimp and Corn soup. It is easy and everyone thinks it delicious.
Here is my recipe:
1/2 bell pepper and 1/2 onion chopped into very fine pieces
1 package 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1 can 98% fat free cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of corn
1 can chicken broth
1 pound shrimp, peeled
Cook pepper and onion in chicken broth until tender. Add cream cheese and mix well. Add mushroom soup and corn. Bring to a boil and add shrimp cook about 5 minutes and serve.
This week my goal is to drink more water!! It is my downfall. I'll continue with my workouts and eating light, Go Baby Weight Team!! We are making some great progress!!!
What a week to start training. My youngest was in the hospital. I wrote on the wrong blog post. The weather!! But hey the walking is my stress relief. Training went well despite the obstacles. Sometimes, I might walk late at night or real early in the morning. I can say that people are starting to comment on the weight loss. That is a nice feeling and all but I don't want to be jinxed and screw up my stride. It never fails, I will be doing real well and then get complacent and ultimately fall off course. I am going in to this challenge with a LITTLE DIFFERENT MIND SET. It is no longer an option for me. I have to lose all of this fat in order to be around for my family. Well, I will step down from my "rah rah" box for now. I hope everyone has a great week!
Training week 1 has begun! I'm so proud of my fellow athletes "Who wants to get Active"! I've read the other blogs and am amazed at all they have to overcome. You are strong and you can do this!!!
My first training session an eye opener! I wasn't in for the shock of how difficult it was to maintain running for 20 min at 4.5 miles/hr on my treadmill. Even with my favorite music, 20 minutes seems alot longer when I'm trying to push through. For some reason my right knee has been sore. I think I twisted it slightly at work. I didn't want that pain to discourage me and be an excuse not to run, so I got on that treadmill and pushed through the initial pain. When I was done, my knee didn't hurt any more than when I had started, so I'm glad I didn't succumb to the temptation to skip out. I did feel dizzy a bit so I needed to turn the speed down for a little and walk, but after 3 minutes, I picked up the pace and continued my run. My second and third runs were similiar but I was more invigorated by the third run and felt GREAT afterwards!! I love endorphines!!! That run alone gave me hope to continue to push myself toward the goal!
On the downside, I did skip one of my crosstraining workouts. I was tired and just didn't make it a priority. I need to be careful not to slack off and cut corners. I want to feel great about my body and my energy level and cutting corners won't accomplish this. Also, I didn't monitor my diet. I've been in the habit of overeating and eating emotionally for so long, that this is another area of weakness for me. I had donuts, pizza, beer...etc. But I now have a plan and the junk food is leaving the house! I have the great support of my husband, who also is changing to a more heart healthy diet. Of course my two boys, who crave sugar, are in for a shock!!
I want some input on the Active workouts for the Wii. I just bought a Wii today and am curious about the different fitness programs that are available for this system. Has anyone tried them?
I had just finished a great run. I was feeling amazing & so proud of myself! That's when it happened. I encountered an "innocent" elderly man in the elevator. My friend & I were telling him about our work out to make conversation. He looked me up and down and said, "Yes, you need the exercise. You're chubby."
Excuse me? Did I hear him right? Yup! Again, with a completely straight face he said, "Yes, you're a chubby girl". The door opened & he just walked away. We were both too shocked to say anything. I was crushed and humiliated in front of my new workout buddy! Pretty much my worst nightmare & my greatest fear - that someone would call me FAT! She tried to reassure me, told me he was crazy & not to worry about him! I forced a smile - "I'm fine."
I got into my car and headed to Target for a few errands. I wasn't fine. I couldn't get the comment out of my head. Ugh! Here comes the negative self talk, followed by giving up & overeating. BUT, this time was different. I thought about my run and what I had accomplished that day. Yes, I'm 5'2" with a round figure AND I'm strong! I had worked up a great sweat and I wasn't gonna let this guy get in the way of that!
And then a very funny thing happened. While in Target, I was stopped by a man who said, "You know, you look just like my wife. She used to be a model, so you should take that as a compliment!" He smiled and walked away. Wow! I stopped in my tracks and chuckled to myself...
I know this was God, or the Universe or some higher being telling me not to take either comment too seriously! The OLD ME would have discarded the compliment, while replaying the elevator scenario over & over. Why was I so mean to myself like that? Why give either one more than just a passing thought?
The point is, no one can build me up or tear me down, BUT ME. No one can take away the effort I put in or the goal I am working for. My confidence, my strength, my determintaion - can come from me & only me.
I have realized this past week that I really missed running. It's something that's been waiting deep down to get out again. I absolutely need exercise for my physical and emotional health, as well as for the happiness of my family. It's no longer an option not to be active.
Tonight, I can whole-heartedly say that I'm NOT a chubby girl, I'm NOT a model, but I AM A RUNNER.
With all the excitement of the Winter Olympics, I've been really excited about training. Yeah, I know a native Floridian of my age and ability has as much of a chance of one day making the Winter Olympics as a snowball's chance in he--, but it certainly helps to motivate when you see people living out their dreams on the world's biggest stage.
I've been running occassionally before the start of this program, but my first run under this program suprised me. I managed to run 2.5 miles in 20:42! I felt a ton of energy and even thought about going a little further. But with the understanding that there's a method to the madness of this training process, I held back.
On Tuesday, the wife treated me to an early birthday present. We went to the specialty running store and I got new shoes! The store experience was incredible. They took a blueprint of my foot to see where I put the most pressure and to look at my arch. Then they put me in a neutral shoe and had me run on the treadmill where they conducted a video-taped gait analysis. Up until now, I always went with the lightweight shoe. I thought that since I was already carrying more body weight than I needed to, the last thing I needed was to lace up with bricks on my feet. But from all the stuff they put me through, I found out that when I run, I pronate- meaning that when my foot lands, it does so on the outside of the foot and rolls inward. The solution was to put me in a shoe that provides stability when my foot strikes the ground.
Thinking that the community pool at my apartment complex was heated, I chose swimming for my cross training. NOT the best idea I've ever had! Turns out the pool isn't heated and central Florida was in the midst of a cold front. So I followed up my polar bear like training with a few minutes of relaxation in the hot tub!
On Wednesday, I learned just how old I am. It was a hectic day with lots of stuff going on. I almost forgot about my training. At 11:30 that night, I laced up my brand new shoes for the first time and headed out. I didn't want to mess with the training schedule in the first week. The results were nothing like the Monday run! I was running into the wind and trying to break in new shoes that weighed significantly more than I'm accustomed to. But at least, I looked good doing it. Near the end, my legs felt like twigs about to snap. Maybe it was the heavier shoe, or running into the wind, or that extra slice of birthday cake, but I was much slower with a time of 20:24 for a total of 2.25 miles.
On Friday, I went up to Tampa to check out the scene of a health and fitness expo for the Gasparilla Distance Classic- Tampa's biggest marathon event. I figured that if I'm going to do one of these one day, I wanted to see what all the excitement was about. I can only imagine what standing at the starting line in April is going to feel like, but if it's anything like the excitement surrounding the anticipation of the event this weekend, I can't wait!
As far as my dieting goes, I'm seeing some great results. A couple of weeks before, my wife and I started on the South Beach Diet. As I weighed in this morning, I am down 24 lbs. from what I weighed in at on New Year's Day!
With all of the temptations and distractions, this week, it's been hard to find consistency with my schedule and diet. I'm sure that over time I will find ways to handle these issues a little better. With that being said, it's hard to find a reason to complain, because the results I've seen so far have been incredible.
So I started my running this week! I can say that I am impressed on what I can run. I am running right now for 23 minutes 2 miles. I know I need to get to almost four miles by the end but I am really proud of myself for what I have done. I will say this though, my knee has been killing me. Do any of you have any advice on what exactly I should do about it? I heard about stretching but when before or after my workout? I started this week to go to the gym at 5am!!! It is so hard but I have to do it. It is the only time I can go to the gym so getting less sleep is okay but I am getting in my workout.
I need it is time I start writing down exactly what I am putting in my mouth and keep a journal log. I am eating healthy BUT eating a lot!! I am going to be checking my weight on Monday so I will let you all know how I am doing.
Today I worked out hard and actually did weight training. I thought it was a good idea to work out my legs a little bit. I am also realizing that it is TOUGH for me to run out in the street compared to the treadmill. The treadmill is so much more convient and easy to do. I need to start practicing on doing both because in 7 weeks I have a race to run.
I hope everyone is doing good with their training. I am excited and motivated to get to that finish line.
Things have been going great. I started working out a week early. Last weekend I went to Callaway Gardens and walked for 4 miles. Last night I went hiking at Red Top Mountain for an hour after work. I’ve decided to become vegan. I was mostly vegetarian last week and since Sunday, I have been doing the vegan thing. I am feeling very encouraged it is amazing what a little exercise and clean eating will do for a person.
I signed up to do a beginners backpacking trip for the weekend of March 13 and 14. I know I need to push myself to get back out there, but honestly, I am scared. I am afraid I won’t be able to keep up with the group or I’ll be the weakest one. I keep thinking of reasons to back out, but I know I won’t because it’s now public information in my blog = ) I know what trail we are backpacking on it’s and 8.5 mile loop so the weekend before I am going to walk it so I know what to expect.
My biggest struggle is time. I work full time from 7 to 3:30 then I usually get home at 4:15. My baby is usually asleep by 8 or 8:30 so I don’t get to spend much time with her. I’ve been feeling guilty about coming home holding her for 10 or 15 minutes then working out for an hour (I’ve been lifting weights and doing extra cardio). When it’s nice out I put her in a stroller and we walk the neighborhood, but it’s almost never nice out. It makes me feel like a bad mom.
I like to end things on a positive note so here it is I have lost 5 pounds and I’ve gone down a pants size in just two weeks. I hope everyone else is doing well too!
Hey Gang! My name is Joe Decker. I'm a Guinness World Record Holder for Fitness and an Active Coach. You've got quite a team assembled here to help you along your path. Now it's up to you to keep it going! Understand you are going to have life issues that get in the way along this journey, you are human and it does happen. That's ok. Stay focused, maintain motivation, adapt and overcome. The ONLY thing keeping you down, overweight or out-of-shape is YOU! Nothing else. You control your destiny. But if you do find yourself dragging butt and need someone to hold your hand while giving ya a kick in your rear, feel free to e-mail me. That's my specialty and I'm glad to help. Now make it happen and be sure to have fun along the way!;-)
Gut Check Fitness, winner of the A-List "Best Boot Camp in San Diego" 2009, voted San Diego's "Hardest Workout Class" Competitor Magazine. Joe Decker, recognized as "The World's Fittest Man" after breaking the Guinness World Records® 24-Hour Physical Fitness Challenge, Readers Choice "Best Fitness Trainer" for 2009.
Monday, I went down to Mission Bay after work and decided to start my official training there. Over the last couple of weeks, I've ramped up my exercise so I wanted to start out with a light jog. I did one mile run and then quick paced (RPE 7) walk back a mile. It felt great! It was so nice to be outside, off the treadmill. It was just starting to get dark but not too cold, it was a really nice end to a work day. I definitely want to get down there more for my walks and runs!
Tuesday and today I did a quick 20 minute walk in my neighborhood, today with my dog. She slows me down with wanting to sniff here and there and take care of her business too, but she's great company. I'm actually just going to head out the door to take my stepson to his trampoline gym. While he does that, I think I'll head back down to the bay and get another 20-30 in at a faster pace!
I saw a news report yesterday that a large order of fries at 5 Guys Burgers and Fries have almost 1500 calories. Of course they give you a sack full but still, 1500 calories! Add a burger and that's another 900 calories. No wonder I'm so fat!