Se7en’s Blog: Time for a Brand New Goal…

Se7en’s Blog: Time for a Brand New Goal…

My Current Goal

Last year my goal was to get moving, just moving… and I had no idea that that would lead me on a path to a whole new life. I am moving: four mornings of gym a week, a Parkrun on Saturdays and at least one hike a week. However, after a year of plodding/walking my way through the ParkRun every single week, staggering through the course and hoping it would all be over sooner rather than later… the pure frustration that I never felt like I was getting any better at it, meant that it was time for a new goal. The truth is there is a vast difference between being gym fit and running fit. My new goal is to run the Parkrun… it sounds easy enough, but for the longest time I have believed this to be quite impossible for me.

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What is Working Well Right Now?

Gym is working really well for me… I have two classes a week and I am loving them. I love learning new things and we have had a bit of a coach shuffle, and different biokineticists do things differently, so it has been all about learning lots of new things. On the days I don’t have class I work my way around the super circuit, with a few other weight machines… and between every couple of machines I hop on a cardio machine for five minutes. In view of my goal, I might have started off my year a little mad… since I couldn’t even dream of running from lamp pole to lamp pole, I started to run a minute/walk a minute on the treadmill… and now I know why it is called the Dreadmill. However, a year ago I couldn’t even push the steps down on the stair machines and now I start almost everyday with a flip on the stair machine… and I actually look forward to it.

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What isn’t Working… Still

Sleep continues to be my nemesis. I am sleeping so much better than I was before I started the programme. So much better. But to be honest… I am a long way off from sleeping enough. I thought I was sleeping well, but I was recently gifted with a FitBit thinking that I would be able to track my footsteps and so on, only to discover that it tracked my sleep and… well you guessed it. I may have been telling myself I was sleeping well, but the truth is that bedtimes had been creeping later and later, and yet I am still getting up at 5am for gym. Something has to change. I know I have to get better at sleep in order to be healthy and achieve my goal. Once AGAIN, I realised just how important it is to keep a diary of what you are actually doing because the gap between what you think you are doing and reality can be somewhat of a chasm. The truth is that whenever I keep a sleep diary or a food diary, I quickly realise where I am making mistakes and it becomes a lot easier to take control again.

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Just Going to Whisper… Actual Running

Clearly lampposts are too far apart for me and I am not very good at treadmills, so I went searching for a couch-to-5km programme. They are out there, and lots of them. But to be honest I needed a remedial version, and it was only when I was browsing through a website and they had a lot of folk saying the 0-5km programme was too hard, they needed an easier programme… that I had an epiphany and went looking for the easiest programme. So I found the super easiest programme I could… keep in mind that I gave myself the whole year to do this, there is no rush. The programme was ten weeks to run a 5km and just three days a week of workouts. Can I just say I am six weeks in and it is going astonishingly well. I am way beyond surprised… at this stage I am running eight minutes, walking two, and a couple of repeats. The run gets longer by a minute every other day or so. The first week was literally run for one minute, walk for five… and I nearly died… but I just did it. And it has gotten easier. The point is when I started this programme I was shuffling, and now I am running. I am running so much more of the Parkrun than I ever was… and my time stays exactly the same. Sigh, how even? Am I running on the spot?!!! For now I am just going to focus on my goal to run 5km I will have to worry about improving my speed later.

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And All the Distractions

I can’t be the only beginner athlete that gets distracted… I have folk I hardly know stop me and tell me that I should just be doing cardio, in order to lose weight… I don’t even know if this is true, but every time I hear it I head into gym for the following few days and I go on a crazy cardio mission. I miss the weights and little injuries surface almost immediately and I am not better for it. My goal is to run 5km, not lose weight… losing weight is a slow and happy by-product of the whole process. In fact lets talk about weight and the scale, I am not a scale kind of gal, which was why it was quite a shocker to stand on a scale, when I joined the programme, for the first time. That being said, I don’t believe the scale should dictate my life and how I feel about myself… (but it kind of does). As part of the Healthy Weight Programme we have a weigh-in each week and I absolutely love my associated chat with my dietitian. A little visit with the scale and slowly but surely the half-kilos fall off and off and off… I have to say, I am not too concerned about the numbers on the scale. I do however use the scale because just knowing I am going to have to stand on the scale makes me stop and think about what I am eating and question, “Is that really necessary?” Without a weekly weigh-in I would never question what I was doing and happily munch away on things that I wasn’t even hungry for. I wish I was at the stage where I could say, “From now on I will only put incredibly healthy food into my body,” but I still need treats and rewards and I am not perfect. That being said, I no longer need treats to get through the day or even the week, as I did when I first started at Sport Science. I now have a treat day once a week, and with regards to healthy eating, things have changed dramatically, but that’s a whole ‘nother blog post.

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And a Major Breakthrough

After taking twenty years off serious exercise it should come as no surprise to anyone here, that the idea of getting back into shape was somewhat of a nightmare. In fact for the first few months of my journey I believed it was all quite impossible, not that I didn’t try everything… I totally was prepared to try anything. But I could not get the “I just can’t do this” song out of my head. I tried to change my thinking, I tried to tell myself, just take small steps… but when the going got tough… “I just can’t do this…” was always rocking around in my head. Well just this last week, when I got to the hardest part of our ParkRun the song in my head was, “Let’s just get this over with.” Do you see what happened there, that’s huge… I am so excited. I have stopped thinking everything is impossible… I am no longer just trying new stuff, I am actually doing new stuff. And when the going gets tough, “Let’s just get this over with.” I am so looking forward to achieving my goal. See what I did there… I didn’t say, I hope I achieve my goal… it’s all about when and not if I run that 5km Parkrun. In fact, I am so looking forward to that day when I can post the post that says… I ran the whole ParkRun. Watch this space…

You Can Read About My Journey From the Start…

Email: se7en@se7en.org.za
Twitter/Instagram: @se7en_hoods
Pinterest: se7en_hoods
Website: www.se7en.org.za


se7en

Email: se7en@se7en.org.za
Twitter/Instagram: @se7en_hoods
Pinterest: se7en_hoods
Website: www.se7en.org.za