Funny enough, when I first started losing weight, I found I'd set a trend amongst my friends. My flatmate jumped on the bandwagon, her boyfriend jumped on the wagon, my best mates both jumped on the wagon, my next door neighbour joined in too. All in their own ways; some did Weightwatchers, same as me, others did their own thing whether it was copious salad eating, cutting the booze or hard-core exercise. The best thing was that they were all successful to some degree or another.
Sadly, all except 2 of us, later stopped and put it all back on.
Since signing up for the half-marathon yesterday (is it weird that those 2 little hyphenated words still cause me little heart palpitations?), I seem to have started the same thing again. Several people I've spoken to have said they might sign up too. Mostly after using the word "crazy" in varying degrees to describe me. I have to admit that the idea of running the race, and all the training leading up to it, seems marginally less fearsome if there's other people doing it too. So finger's crossed they decide to join me!
I'm not sure I feel crazy though, just a bit over-whelmed. The 12 week training plan officially begins in mid-December. Until that time, I just intend to keep the exercise steady, and continue running once or twice a week for my normal distances, which is roughly a 5km round the harbour.
I've been tracking my running and exercise all this year in an Excel spreadsheet I keep at work. At the moment, I've clocked about 250km of running (249.7km if you're feeling pernickety - I'm not), over some 28.5 hours of running. Last week I finally got round to opening an account on GMAP Pedometer, which is where I measure all my runs for distance - this means that I can now track my runs directly into their online log, and they give me all kinds of cool statistics back about my runs. For instance, my last run on Tuesday felt tiring. I really felt like I was struggling a bit, and walked once or twice. But I did push on to do the full circuit of the harbour and not the shorter version. And, as per usual, when I logged it, I found that the reason it was harder was that I'd actually run it at a slightly quicker pace than the last 2. Each run had been a tiny bit quicker than the last.
Whilst I do love GMAP, it's a bit of a pain logging all your runs and routes manually, so what I'd really love for my half-marathon training is one of these beauties - the Garmin Forerunner, so I could geek it up completely over how I'm doing, and even where I've been when I'm biking too, but that might have to wait til my birthday or Xmas, since it's money I don't have right now (unless Garmin fancy giving me, in which case I'd love them forever, but somehow I doubt that will happen!)
I also love seeing how my exercise has built up over the year. Here's another little stat for you - since I've started tracking all my exercise, I've averaged 4.2 workouts a week this year (that's since 24/01/11). I include any walks or bike-rides over an hour in my tally, but most of those workouts are gym, running, or proper outdoor hiking / biking / surfing.
That's fantastic, but also tells me that I've been eating quite a lot, if I'm doing all that and still effectively maintaining my weight. As has been mentioned before, my weight has been within a constant 7-8lb zone for the last 2 years - 3 or 4lbs above or below 12.5st. It doesn't seem to vary much outside of there. But with the amount of exercise I do, it really shouldn't be hard for me to lose some more, and move myself into a new ball-park. As I said last night, I'm sure this is something that I'd find hugely beneficial for my run. In fact, I'm so damn scared about the run, that I think I'm going to find hiterto untapped reserves of determination to lose.
As Badger pointed out on last night's post - once I'm into the training, I may not find that much comes off me although I might change shape at that point. So I've got about 11 weeks before then to make a real effort to lose a bit, and make the whole endeavour as painless as possible.
I've got the fear, people! The FEAR!
(so much so that I didn't even finish my jacket potato with tuna and cheese at lunch ......unheard of!)
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