Another morning run in the books. Getting to bed earlier definitely helps me get up much easier (duh!). I haven’t checked to see for sure, but I think week 3 is the shortest of all the workouts. I was able to complete it with no trouble at all. I’ve been hammering away at my healthy living checklist. Although I’ve faltered a little bit, most of it is sticking. I just have to keep focused over the long term.
In my last post I mentioned a “healthy living” checklist. I don’t really have one, well until now I guess. Over the last few years I’ve been tackling one at a time. Some I’ve been on-again/off-again with, but enough discipline has started to set in so that some are permanent. The goal being all permanent of course.
Here is the list:
Exercise – at least cardio 3 days a week. This is what I’m doing the couch to 5k program for. My goal is to start more higher intensity interval training. Hopefully I get to that by September. I’m also going to work in some resistance training.
Eat Right – Try to make each meal count. I don’t think I’m too bad in this area, although my diet isn’t really well rounded. I can definitely eat healthier (more fruits and veggies) even though I don’t really eat unhealthy things.
Vitamins – This goes along with healthy eating to some degree, but can be mentioned separately. I’ve always taken multivitamins and have taken omega 3 fish oil for a long time. Recently I’ve upped my vitamin d intake. I like supplements as they fill in the gaps missing from my overall diet.
Sleep – This is something I can improve on. I got at least 6 hours a night, but my bedtime was sporadic. I would also get into the habit of hitting the snooze button a lot. My goal is to get 7+ hours in, to go to bed at a set time, and to wake right up.
Sugar - I’ve been good at avoiding excess sugar for the most part for a long time. Now I even water down some “no extra sugar added” juices because I’ve become accustomed to how things are supposed to taste (not obnoxiously sweet).
Salt - They say most people have a weakness for either sugar or salt. I never ever crave anything sugary. But I do with salt. I know I eat an unhealthy amount. I have been cutting back without missing it too much.
Artificial Sweeteners - I’m going to cut this out all-together. Let others debate the risks. I don’t want to find out years later that it has really been unhealthy all along. Plus like I mentioned under sugar, I’ve gotten used to (and prefer) things the way they’re supposed to taste.
Water - I can’t believe that this is something that I have to be mindful of, but it is. As last year’s C25K posts can attest, getting enough water can make or break a workout. Plus the documented health benefits are not even debated. I have a Brita filter at home, and when I get bored of plain ole’ water, I drink Poland Spring’s flavored sparkling water.
Caffeine - Probably not bad in moderate amounts, I was by far going well beyond moderate amounts. I quit cold turkey a few weeks ago. Mostly because I felt like my energy was out of balance. Plus I really don’t like anything having a hold of me like the caffeine did. It took 4 days for me to get over it. Now I don’t really miss it. Although I did have some decaf with cake this weekend. I might start drinking some green tea, which has about 1/4 the caffeine of coffee, in very small amounts to get the health benefits of the tea and the moderate amount of caffeine.
Fruits and Vegetables (added 6/14/11) – Get enough fruits and vegetables daily. This can fall under “eating right” but making sure to get enough fruits and vegetables needs to be on it’s own as it’s been a challenge my entire life.
Eat as whole as possible (added 10/18/11) – Where I can, I’m making an effort to eat as “whole” as possible. This is more than only cutting out artificial sweeteners (mentioned above), but as many mass produced/manufactured foods as possible. I have to pick and choose here. I don’t want it to become a frustrating (and expensive) task, so I’ll stick to “when possible.” For example, I already switched peanut butter to a brand where the ingredients are… drumroll… Peanuts and salt. That’s it. Not 20 different artificial ingredients like the big brands have.
Incorporate the following foods (added 12/8/11) – Eggs, garlic, green tea, turmeric, and probiotics (probiotics through sour kraut, olives, pickles, or supplements).
That’s all for now.
I’ve accomplished something I thought I’d never be able to do. Morning runs right after waking up.
Finding time to run can be a challenge. I had been going at night, but the added difficulty of timing dinner right and getting my son to bed was beginning to get on my nerves and making it later and later. So Saturday, I took a “test drive” of what it would be like to run right after waking up.
It was ok. I think I lacked a little energy that I would have had if I had gone through a day (eating a few meals). But it wasn’t bad. The pros outweigh the cons.
This morning I tried it again on a work day. Same as the first–felt a little robbed of energy, especially towards the very end. But overall both were fairly easy runs.
I’m going to run in the mornings from now on. It feels good to get something out of the way so early in the day. And by the time I’m back, it’s a little earlier than I would have woken up anyway. I don’t mind the extra time in the morning.
This also helps me with another item on the “healthier lifestyle” checklist. Get to bed earlier. The night runs really got in the way of that. Now I’m going to make it a habit to get to bed earlier and at the same time each night.
In the last post I mentioned that I probably could have started on week 3 since the first week was so easy. Well tonight proved to be a reminder that it’s not that easy. It would have been a mistake for me to skip, so I’m glad I didn’t.
On the scale of things, it still wasn’t hard at all, just not as easy as I would have liked. Last year I got to my goal of an almost effortless 3 mile run in under 30 minutes. Tonight wasn’t effortless, although remembering back to this point last year, it’s a breeze in comparison. Not only have I maintained some of my fitness, but I remembered all of my learnings (adequate hydration, adequate rest, ample time to digest, running form, breathing, etc).
Also remembering back, although it’s been pretty hot and humid, it’s not as bad as it was last year during the beginning of this program in late July and early August.
Tonight there was a first. I went straight out jogging soon after getting home from work. I usually eat dinner and aim to get out by 9pm. This time I was out at 6:30 before eating. Maybe it’s my overcoming caffeine, but I didn’t have the usual energy lull when getting home from work. This worked out great because start to finish it takes me 30 minutes to leave and come back. I’ve grown to like running around my streets rather than the track (something I went back and forth with last year). One significant advantage is the time to hit the pavement is 0 as apposed to probably 10-15 minuets extra getting to and from the track. This extra time gives me more time to play with the kiddo and get him ready for bed.
The real reason I went out early was to beat the rain. But I might consider this time more going forward.
Got both workouts in over the weekend. I felt really good. I definitely didn’t lose much wind from my 6 month layoff. I really pushed the pace on the 60 second jogs. I could have probably started with week 3, but I’m just going to follow the program in full. Hopefully I can push myself harder in the early weeks to gain me some extra wind for the latter weeks.
The shin sleeves are working like a charm. No shin splints. I also switched back to my old sneakers, which are much more comfortable.
I can’t stress how much of a help the C25K for Android app is. I get easily distracted and frustrated the more I have to pay attention to things (stopwatch, etc) other than my jogging. The app lets you listen to music, and sounds bells each time it’s time to run or jog.
My caffeine withdrawal is over. It feels good to have more balanced energy throughout the day. Now I have to work on the diet a little more to start taking some pounds off.
Although I slacked off for 6 months, I really didn’t do anything too too unhealthy (especially based on today’s standards). I have been maintaining my vitamin d, multivitamin, and omega 3 fish oil supplementation.
I must must must buy winter gear this year and run throughout the winter. I was hesitant to lay down money and thought I’d take the workout indoors. That has failed me so many times that this time is the last. I’ll invest in winter gear to stay in shape all year round. I hope.
I’m into day 3 of my cold turkey caffeine stoppage. It’s rough, but could be worse. I’ve done this before. Usually I’m ok after 2 full days. I guess the volume I was drinking prior to the stoppage is prolonging my withdrawal. I don’t have a headache per se. It’s a weird feeling. Not necessarily sleepy tired, but very worn out feeling. I can’t wait to get over this.
So it begins, again. After a successful run though the Couch to 5K running program last year, I got lazy over the winter, then procrastinated throughout spring (up until today). I gained a lot of my weight back (oh well), but I must have kept some of my wind because today’s workout was relatively easy.
I actually tried to start the program up a few week ago, but was stopped by raging shin splints. I’ve had minor cases before, but none like this time. My shins felt like they were ready to explode.
I went and got some calf sleeves. Man did they make a huge difference. I had no problems whatsoever in the shin/calf area tonight. I think I found the culprit. Besides the extra weight I’m carrying, I think the new sneakers I have are duds. They don’t feel right at all. My feet and ankles were hurting a little. Nothing serious. But I’ve never really had that before. Next time I’m breaking out my old trusty pair of sneaks. And see how they treat me.
Last year I started at the end of July and finished in November. Hopefully this year I can finish late September. Then really get to my goal of running sprints again. I’ve gotta get winter gear this year. I can’t maintain anything in the house. I can’t get motivated to do any working out inside the house at all.
I’m really happy to get this done tonight. I’m also 2 days into a semi-annual (hopefully permanent) break from coffee/caffeine. Withdrawal was getting the best of me today. I mustered all the strength I had and got myself out of the door on onto the workout.
I can’t wait for the next workout. Man I love this feeling.
This is sort-of follow up to my last post about this summer being about finishing projects, getting ideas off the ground, etc. Already I feel better. In the GTD sense, I think I’ve mastered the day to day, week to week, month to month, things that have to get done. What was seeming to escape me was the someday/maybe/not-so-urgent items. Especially the ones staring me in the face everyday. A lot of them are household projects. In a few focused and dedicated hours on Sunday, I got a lot accomplished. I was sort of under the gun since I had a party to go to later in the day. I think if I focus and remain disciplined, I can find a few hours each weekend to continue on my goal to FINISH. It feels good to finally cross off some things on the long list. It builds a momentum.
Even at work, some career wishlist items are being crossed off. Just yesterday we launched our first multivariate test that we’re managing in-house. I have this undying fascination on learning to do things myself. Career wise, it’s hard to tell if that’s a good thing or bad thing. I don’t think everyone “at the top” needs to know the itty-bitty details on how a MVT test works technically. But I seem to in order to be comfortable. Well that’s off my list. This is in addition to what I’ve mentioned before in one of my past “what I’ve been working on” posts. This stuff if kinda related to finishing as most have been on a career todo of sorts.
Well I’m fully up and running on WordPress. It didn’t go off completely error free. The importing of the entire blog was easy. Here’s what went wrong:
1) Archives had a different url structure, so I had to do a htaccess redirect from old to new structure. Luckily the blog didn’t date back too long, so it was easy.
2) WordPress imported some commas, apostrophes, and other special characters when it produced the permalinks. It didn’t happen in all cases, so this might be a bug.
3) This is more a carryover from my frustration with Blogger (I think), but formatting with the span tag in the html caused some posts to look ugly. I’m in the process of cleaning that up along with other erroneous html tags that Blogger insisted on inserting (like a mysterious span “misspelling” tag).
I’m sure I’ll find others, but that seems to be the bulk of it. All and all it was pretty painless. I’m glad I now have full control and able to tinker around. Now about the design… I’ll have to work on that a lot more.
I’m in the process of transferring this entire blog from Blogger to my own domain running WordPress. This is my first post to WordPress directly.
For practice, I’ve done it once before, transferring my Bills’ site’s blog.
Now I’m just waiting for the last part, switching the dns entry that pointed blog.mattsoreco.com to blogger. Once this change is done, I have a rewrite rule in my .htaccess file to forward blog.mattsoreco.com to mattsoreco.com and maintain the rest of the url parameters.
I left this off my last post about “finishing” this summer. I’ve wanted to transfer my sites (personal site and blog) to one whole site for some time. Now it’s done.
I know there will be some mopping up afterwards as not all the urls will match up exactly.
All and all it was pretty painless–assuming I’m not missing anything.
Next step is to freshen up the design and format. Which I must finish by the end of summer. And of course tinker around with plugins and other customizations.
This is good practice as we might move my company’s blog from WordPress.com to a more customizable installation.