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I guess by now everyone knows our 5K was not quite. I was a bit disappointed because I really wanted this to be my baseline for the many runs I plan for my future. I finished the not-quite-5K in 36:18 which was pretty much on pace for me. The good news is that I came in 2nd in the old ladies 50+ group. And the even better news is that the person who beat me by 7 seconds was a year younger than me. So, I'm not embarrassed. Although I don't have an honest baseline, I have a sense of where I stand in relation to the other women my age, and I have a new goal. I figure if I can do an entire 5K in 36:18 that would be awesome!


Unlike Jewyl who was able to run the entire course, I walked some. Especially in the first mile - it takes me a while to settle in. By the second mile, I was pretty well in a groove and then - oops - it was over. My daughter, Erica, ran with me the whole time which was really nice of her - unfortunately this put her near the bottom of her age group. Thanks for sacrificing yourself, Erica! You kept me moving. And Mike, with that %#&# video camera - every time I wanted to stop and walk you were there filming. You kept me moving, too!



I really enjoyed this, and I still can't believe I'm running. I always thought running was dumb, but now I've learned to like it. I think as you get a little better at doing something, you tend to like it more and that's where I am with running. I do think I will continue - I may even sign up for a local 5 mile run next month. I know I'll walk A LOT for that one, but it really doesn't matter. It's the fun of getting out and doing it that counts. And I feel so cool crossing that finish line, no matter what the clock says



Thanks to everyone at Active for making me do this and keeping me on track. It was so much fun to meet the people who I've met via email over the past few months. Thanks to Dave and Nancy for your insight and encouragement. Thanks to Giselle, Melissa and Emily for coordinating this team, helping me when I couldn't figure out the website and for leaving some fun comments on my blog. Thanks for the wonderful goody bag - I look forward to using the spa gift certificate soon, but I really treasure my framed picture from Active. I'm putting that up so I can see it every morning for motivation!



Jewyl, keep running or swimming or whatever - and best of luck to you and Mike. Giselle, good luck with your marathon. Erica, get another car key!!!



1,150 Views 4 Comments Permalink Tags: who-wants-to-get-active


So, I did it... I ran the race.  It was a "5k" which means that it was supposed to be a 5k, which is about 3.1 miles, but instead they made the course incorrectly and it was only 2.48 miles.  But I didn't know it at the time, and I felt pretty darn good considering that I ran the entire thing after all.  I really didn't think I could run the whole thing, but I did and I feel like that was a big success for me.  and even if I couldn't have done it in under 30 minutes, if it had been a real 5K I know I would have made it to the end.  So horay for that. 



Let me tell you why I made it in the time that I did... well, I was about 3/4 the way through the race, and I was jogging the whole time, when striding up beside me was a really, and I mean really, old guy.  probably 80 or older.  And he wasn't jogging...he was POWER WALKING.  yeah, I know... I didn't know a person could actually walk that fast, but he did.  So basically, I felt that the humiliation of losing to this guy would be too much for me, so I stepped up and pushed myself harder.  So wherever you are, old guy, let me just tell you, thanks!  and keep up the good work.



Team active was great... they were there to cheer me on and video the final excitement.  They also blessed me with a much needed massage coupon, and I can't wait to go use that puppy!  Thanks for my gift bag guys!



Even though I'm not a big fan of running, I could see myself tackle a 5k again. It's manageable, and it feels good to finish it, so, to all you couch potatoes out there, if I can do it, so can you!



1,054 Views 4 Comments Permalink


Posted by RonnieFR May 5, 2009


Less than four days to go!  The race day that seemed so far off back in December has finally arrived and I wish I had another month to train!  I feel like I might be getting the hang of this - better late than never.  I'm still slow, but I can run the 3.1 miles over and over again.  I'm hoping that the excitement of being in a ‘real race' will motivate me even more and give me an extra boost of energy. 



Today I ran my last training run.  I ran a really decent 3.1 miles on Sunday - on a treadmill, though, because it's been raining for what seems like weeks.  Did a gym workout yesterday, and ran again tonight (on the treadmill, still raining).  For the rest of this week it's relaxing and letting the old body recuperate.  Wednesday, it's a nice relaxing massage - a gift to myself for getting this far.  Thursday, pack for San Diego.  By Friday afternoon I'll be scouting out the race area in San Diego and looking forward to meeting everyone that I've met on line. 



This has been a fun experience.  I wish I had taken this a little more seriously at the beginning, but it seemed like I had so much time to get into running shape.  So, here we are at the proverbial finish line and I'm not really in the best shape.  But you know what?  I've learned that you have to commit - early and often - to get the results you want.  And I realized that running isn't all that bad, and that sometimes I really, really enjoy it (usually after I'm done).  The better you get at something, the more you enjoy doing it.  I think I'll keep this up for a while.  



794 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: who-wants-to-get-active, commitment, rookie-runners


Ok, sorry about my last blog... but venting is part of the experience, right?  Well, anyways, only 2 weeks to go... I don't know if any of the readers out there are joining us for the LIFE sneaker challenge, but if you are I'm wondering how your training is going! Feel free to comment on how you're doing.  I'm getting excited that it's here.



On another note...I got to try on wedding dresses for the first time today, and hopefully that will convince me to keep up my workouts because I'm hoping to fit into a few more of them next time I go try on dresses (anyone else wish they carried a wider size selection?!).  It's definitely going to push me to continue working out after the 5K... and now I know that I need to vary my workouts to keep myself interested and excited about working out. 






850 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: training, 5k, wedding, who-wants-to-get-active, 2009, coaching-advice, beginning_runner, life_sneaker_challenge, sneaker_challenge, dress

5k?  Who what when where why?

Posted by JewylA Apr 22, 2009


Um, ok, so I know we're getting close to the 5k, but I don't really know the details... Giselle...can you post something about it?  What's it called?  Where are we supposed to meet?  Website?






783 Views 4 Comments Permalink

On the road again

Posted by JewylA Apr 22, 2009


Ok, so it's been a few days now, but last week on thursday, I finally got back on the road.  I went out there thinking... ok, can do it.  Just jog for 5 minutes at a time...take as many rests as you need... it's been a while so it's ok if you lost it.  And guess what... I jogged for a full 12 minutes before taking a 2 minute break, then for 8 minutes!  After about 3 weeks off of jogging at all.  So I felt a lot better about things, and hopefully it will help me to get back into the jogging until the 5k...



I have found out a few things about myself during this training.  First of all... 4 and a half months is WAY too long of a time to train for a 5K, because it's not terribly long so once you get up to jogging that much you don't feel like you need to do much more.



Secondly, I HATE to jog or run.  In the beginning I had planned to do some swimming instead of some of my workouts, but it was suggested that I do that in addition to my workouts.  Well, there's just no way that I'm going to spend that kind of time working out.  I already have to get all changed into my jogging gear 3 times a week, do a very uncomfortable jog, then shower and not plan to do anything else for the evening... I was not about to add one more time per week.  Some people are passionate about being active and they love it... but then there are the rest of us who only do it because we don't want to keel over early in life. 



Well, anyways, I should have just thrown out one jog per week to do a workout I might actually enjoy.  I love aerobic workouts like swimming, or aerobic videos... or turbo kick boxing at the gym, but I guess I felt like training for this didn't give me any chance to do any workout I actually liked.  I can't even eat the same lunch two days in a row, let alone do the same boring workout two days in a row, but I guess I feel pushed into just doing the same thing over and over again...which meant that at some point I pretty much gave up.  I have learned that I just won't do that in the future. 



There is no specific plan that will work for me... if I am going to be successful I need to do the workout that I want to do...otherwise I get super frustrated and bored and I give up.  Not to mention, Jogging is very uncomfortable for some people because of the way we are built and it's definitely just not my thing. That's why I like to swim.  I don't come home with deep cutting red marks from the bra that I have to wear to keep anything in place during a run.  I don't have to worry about ogglers.  I don't have to be so uncomfortable.  I don't have to be so hot.  I don't need a bunch of different workout clothes because they get all sweaty every day.  It's just more my style.



So, even if this program hasn't made a jogger out of me, I think at least it has made me reflect on what might actually work for me.  

In the end, I consider that a success.



Oh, and can I add... freaking weird.  I've lost 5 pounds since I STOPPED jogging.  Why is the world such a weird place?  (I know...I know...metabolism...fat to muscle ratios..etc... but really... lost no poundage while jogging and now 5 pounds?  Doesn't seem right) 



766 Views 3 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, swimming, workout, 5k, who-wants-to-get-active, rookie, overweight, coaching-advice, training-pace, beginning_runner

No News is Good News

Posted by RonnieFR Apr 21, 2009


It's getting harder to write something interesting because there's no drama.  For me, that's a good thing!  No injuries, no issues, no obstacles - just trying very hard to keep motivated in these last couple of weeks.  For part of last week I was in New Hampshire on a business trip - planned to run, but never got to it.  However, I did get in my runs on Tuesday and Sunday, and my gym workouts on Monday and Friday.  Not bad.  I haven't been on the treadmill for about two weeks because it's been nice enough outside to run - and every time I run outside now I do my 5K trying to better my time.



Speaking of time.  I bought myself a stopwatch because I've just been timing myself with my wristwatch.  At this point every second counts    So on Sunday I took off with my brand new stopwatch - I checked at my 2 mile mark and was pretty happy.  I tend to do well with my last mile, so I pushed pretty hard and couldn't wait to see the final time at my finish line.  48 seconds.  I must have hit something as I was running and reset the time.  Oh, well.  I had no idea what time I left the house (because I had my NEW stopwatch), so I can't even tell you if it was good or bad. 



Last night was a gym night - my knees are miraculously holding up great!  Tonight was an unexpected rest night (I took a nap after work and it lasted too long - LOL).  But tomorrow is another mid-week 5K. 



Oh, and BTW, do I still have a Rookie Runner Team?  I know Jewyl is halfway around the world - so that's a good excuse for not checking in.  We know she's doing something amazing - swinging from trees, etc.  But Josh?  Scott?  Are you running so much you can't take the time to share your thoughts?  Check in, guys - I'm getting lonely!!



749 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: running, who-wants-to-get-active, rookie

I seem to have lost some enthusiasm. This week was tough - I did do my running three times (I try for four), but have to say it was an uphill battle. And an argument with myself. I don't know if it's because my weeks are getting routine, I'm not dropping the weight I think I should, or I don't seem to be getting any better with distance and time. I've hit a wall. Is this normal, or am I just a whiner?


Anyway, yesterday I came home and REALLY did not want to go out. It was supposed to rain, so I was intending to hit the treadmill at the gym but fortunately/unfortunately (depends on the viewpoint) the rain held out until late at night and I was able to hit the pavement. As long as the weather is decent, I've been trying to run outside. All week I was able to run outside, but I didn't have much motivation, and Sunday and Wednesday I did about two very slow miles.



If I lived by myself, I probably would have hit the couch last night instead of the pavement. But my husband kicked me out which some encouraging (nagging?) words about how important it is to exercise when you don't want to...blah, blah, blah. Grudgingly, I changed into running gear and started - in my mind planning to run one mile (essentially to get him off my back) then come home. A funny thing happened - I started doing pretty well. My feet didn't hurt, my legs didn't hurt, my breathing was pretty decent. I did my first mile and thought, "What the heck?" Once I got a little farther it was either run the rest of the way home or call someone for a ride - so I ran. I ran the entire 5K route - 3.1 miles, running a majority of the way.



So this was my second 5K around town. I did it once before a couple of weeks ago with abysmal time. But I chalked that up to my shin hurting and my first time seeing how long 3.1 miles can be. Last night I did the entire distance 9 minutes less than I did the first time. I'm still not "fast" but I feel confident now that I can reach my first goal for our 5K - to finish!



Saturday (today) is my ‘absolute rest' day - I religiously don't work out or run just to give myself a mental and physical break. Hate to say it - but - I'm looking forward to my THIRD 5K tomorrow. And I sooo plan to knock a few more minutes off. I figure if I can do reasonably well NOT wanting to go, think how well I'll do if I'm motivated! And I have another goal - to knock an average of 2 minutes off my time each week. I don't know if that's realistic (I feel like it is), but if I can do that I'll actually be proud of my time in May.



Four more weeks until our 5K Rookie Run in San Diego - and I hope I've overcome my inertia for good! Happy running!



952 Views 4 Comments Permalink Tags: motivation, who-wants-to-get-active

How Times Have Changed

Posted by RonnieFR Apr 1, 2009


I was out running a few days ago with my husband and a young woman (mid-20s) ran by us (blew by us, actually).  She looked totally at ease running, while I think I may look a bit scary.  Anyway, my husband noted how women's fitness has changed since I was young and how I didn't grow up with any focus on fitness - that's just the way it was.



My high school had over 3000 students in three grades.  Because of its size, there were tons of options for classes.  However, the only women's sports teams were tennis and cheerleading - and cheerleading was not gymnastics-focused like it is today.  I had the same gym teacher for two out of the three years - and she taught us dance.  She had been a Rockette in her very early years, and that's what we did every day for phys ed.  Tap, tap, tap, turn... can you imagine??  In three years of high school PE, my heart rate probably never rose higher than normal resting rate.  Cardio was not a concept.  Even ‘jogging' wasn't in the dictionary.  Proof?  "Veronica and I are trying this new fad called uh, jogging. I believe it's jogging or yogging. It might be a soft j. I'm not sure but apparently you just run for an extended period of time. It's supposed to be wild."  (And if you haven't seen Anchorman with Will Ferrell, you need to stop working out and rent the DVD!).



There was no such thing as sports teams for young kids.  I'm sure there was Pop Warner Football and Little League, but nothing for girls.  Now, we start our children - boys and girls - in sports almost as soon as they can walk.  We know the value of an active lifestyle.  We encourage our children to try all the sports and keep active - and most of the recreational sports make sure that each child gets equal playing time.  By the time the teenage years arrive, even with some less-than-healthy choices, we hope the fitness habit has been ingrained. 



So, here I am trying to make up for growing up in a time where ‘strong' and ‘girl' were mutually exclusive.  The ‘good old days' were not always.  And it's never too late to have a happy (and active) childhood!     



1,271 Views 5 Comments Permalink Tags: jogging, who-wants-to-get-active, rookie

I just wanted to share with you that my mom is awesome.  Why?   Read the story here...


If you're curious as to why I'm blogging from Sierra Leone, check out the article and see why  my mom lives here!  She's amazing.

936 Views 2 Comments Permalink


Ouside of Dakar, Senegal is the Acrobaobab adventures where we did a ropes  course at the top of the trees.  It was a lot of fun, but also

made you really use your muscles to get around.  We had a great time, but we were all a bit sore the next day.  These are definitely different muscles than you use on a run!  If you're ever in Senegal, plan in an acrobaobab adventure!








898 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: climbing, travel, who-wants-to-get-active, holiday, africa, muscles, rookie, beginning_runner, tree

My First 5K (and Weekly Update)

Posted by RonnieFR Mar 25, 2009


After MONTHS of this, I finally decided to buckle down and stop being a wuss.  I normally log about 2 - 2 1/2 miles on my runs.  I realized that we only have about 6 more weeks to prepare for this race so need to kick it into high gear.  I mapped out a real 5K route through town and hit the pavement after work.  Proud to say that I finished (the first phase of my goal).  The time wasn't great but at least I have the "feel" of the 5K.  And I have 6 more weeks to shave a bit of time off each day.  If I keep it up, without any injuries, I just might finish with a respectable time in May. 



Sorry, Dave, for not posting my weekly update. It's just that nothing exciting is happening, so I thought my blog would be boring.  I've been a bit lax about updating the training log, too, so if you're looking at that I have some entries to make. 



Summarizing -  last week I got in 4 days of running.  Still, when I say ‘run' I mean jog and walk.  I don't know if I'll ever be able to run the entire route.  I'm working on adding a few more running steps every day.  On Saturday I woke up feeling like I was getting a cold, so I took the day to rest.  Jogged on Sunday around town (the beginning of my week) but only did about 1.5 miles because I still felt a bit tired.  On Monday, I felt a bit worse, so I rested again.  Tuesday (yesterday) was cold here, so I hit the gym and the treadmill for a half hour and was feeling better.  The LAST thing I need is a cold!



I'm liking the new training plan too.  Have to admit that I was a bit shocked when I downloaded it after my short vacation two weeks ago and saw all the extra training days.  But, hey, May is almost here.  Plus, I like the variety even if I can't complete everything as directed.  I get points for trying, right?



Oh - one issue - maybe.  I've been feeling some pain in my right shin when I run - and it radiates to my calf too.  It was bothering me last night on the treadmill, and today I still feel it in my right leg on the lower part of the shin.  It slowed me down tonight, but seemed to feel a bit better during my last mile (maybe I finally warmed up?).  Always something.  It stinks to be old.  Will break out the trusty ice packs tonight.   Any advice? 






861 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: 5k, who-wants-to-get-active, shin-pain

Fitting in a workout on vacation

Posted by JewylA Mar 25, 2009


So, I've been here in west africa for about 10 days, and as anyone knows it's hard to fit in a workout sometimes.  Right now I'm on a "vacation" with my mom to Senegal, and this morning we woke up at a hotel with a pool, and then our flight left at 3. 



So we were hanging out poolside for about 2 or 3 hours, and I thought...well..I'm not working out today.  Then I realized that I had a workout right in front of me.   I got up and did laps for about 10 minutes.  It's been a while since I've done laps, so I tired out pretty quickly, but it it felt good to get my blood pumping.  It's the perfect way to fit in a workout when you're on the road.



838 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: swimming, travel, workout, who-wants-to-get-active, holiday, vacation, africa, rookie, beginning_runner

Weekly updates?

Posted by davedunham Mar 24, 2009

Anyone have weekly updates for me?  I'm very interested in seeing how the training is going.....

575 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: training, who-wants-to-get-active

The ultimate Ultimate Frisbee

Posted by JewylA Mar 23, 2009


Ok, so I've only gone on 2 jogs here so far, but the amount of exercise I'm getting really helps to lessen my guilt.  I walk a TON around town, and often I'll go for a beach walk with another ex-pat (that's non-sierra leonian...usually NGO worker or something like that).  




If you're ever in freetown, Saturday mornings at about 930 or 10, a group of ex-pats and some locals they work with come down to lumley beach for a game of Ultimate Frisbee.   Now, imagine a hot African sun and a big patch of sand and a frisbee... it's monday and I'm definitely still sore.  We played for about an hour...running back and forth across the sand.  These african boys are fast and not very bothered by the sun...keeping up with them wasn't my goal..not dying from heatstroke was much more important.  (although I almost passed out from that today but that's another story).



Basically, I'm trying to at least keep my heart rate up for an hour or so every day, so I'm pretty happy with the amount of walking I've been doing.  Tomorrow we leave here to go to Senegal, where I've heard there's a park near by where we're staying for us to go for a run.   I'm definitely packing my tennies.



Now, I know there's a bit of a competition as to who has the best encouragement story, so I'm working on my mom.  She's got a reputation for never wanting to do any excersise here, so I'm going to be working on her over the next few weeks so I can get her going.  Also, Michael, if you're reading this, you need to get in gear so our Wedding pics look fantastic!  You're my other target so get into gear! 



That's it for now.  Signing off from Freetown.






728 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, travel, walking, 5k, who-wants-to-get-active, rookie, beginning_runner, ultimate_frisbee
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