Monday, July 28, 2008

You call it "treadmill", I call it "DREADmill"...

Sometimes you gotta change it up. Come up with a new plan to replace the old one that wasn't working. What am I referring to? The dreaded "E" word: EXERCISE.

Yuck. I really am not a fan of the word. Sure, in theory, it all sounds great, but actually stick me on the treadmill and expect me to sweat the pounds off? Not so fun. The main problem has been that I got off the treadmill a couple of months ago for an out-of-town trip, and NEVER GOT BACK ON. Oops. Now I've heard a lot of people say naughty things about treadmills, remarking how "boring" it is to be on one for any amount of time. I might agree if it wasn't close to 100 stinkin' degrees outside, so to me, my little set-up of the treadmill, parked in front of the TV loaded with five billion channels, one big fan on high in the front, and one fan on high in the back, well, it's not the worst deal.

Whilst I was "faithful" to my treadmill, I would walk 4 miles in an hour, 5-7 days a week. And I noticed that my thighs shaped up a little. And I was happy. But it still wasn't such a noticeable difference in my body for such a lot of effort on my part (at least in my opinion).

Fast-forward to a month ago when I read an article on the Internet that suggested folks that added spurts of jogging or running into their walking routines were losing weight up to FOUR TIMES FASTER those that were just walking. Sign me up! Oh wait. I hate to jog. Pretty much the only instance you would find this body jogging would be a.) if a truck full of FREE MONEY was in front of me, or b.) if someone was chasing me with a gun.

So, I figured, what the heck? I'll try it. Last night, after months off the treadmill, I got back on for an hour. I made my own little routine of 5 minutes walking, 2 minutes jogging, etc., etc. for the entire hour. (Don't laugh -- 2 minutes at a time of jogging seemed like an eternity to me! Thankfully it added up to over a quarter of the whole hour that I spent jogging, a vast improvement for this non-runner.) And my body was drenched in sweat. Gross. One more thing I don't love -- sweating. But I felt a grand sense of accomplishment, and I felt things jiggling that I hadn't felt jiggling ever before. I'm hoping that means over time they might jiggle right off my body.

We'll see how long this lasts...


Karen said...

Hey Valerie!
I did this same thing last winter. I have never been a runner but decided to take up running on the treadmill. How exhilarated I felt when I could run a few miles! I had more energy than ever, I was less inclined to snack on junk food, I looked healthier than I had in years & I was madly shedding the unwanted 15 I had left over from the births of my one and two year olds.
Then came the day when I decided to shave "just a few more minutes off my mile." I guess I hadn't stretched properly. I took 4 minutes off that mile, yup, I sure did. And I felt something bad in my Achilles tendons. Yes, both. Within an hour I couldn't walk. By the next morning I was at the Doctor's office. I left with two air cast, a prescription for a muscle relaxer and another for a narcotic pain reliever. For nearly six weeks I could barely move. My mother almost came from Florida to take care of my kids. I had to scoot down my stairs on my butt while holding my infant daughter.
I couldn't wear any shoes with my feet in the air casts.
I laid awake at night with throbbing feet and worried that I had, indeed, damaged myself beyond repair.
Eventually, I recovered but I still have not returned to the treadmill. Even though I know it was entirely my own fault I just haven't been inclined to try again.
Lesson: Do a better job stretching than I did or pay the horrible consequences.
I am going back to swimming!

Amylouwho said...

I ran across your blog and had to comment on this post - we just got a treadmill!

I think it's great what you're doing! That's how I got back into running after my baby - 4 minutes walking 1 min running. There's a running coach -Jeff Galloway- and that's how he recommends getting into it. So you should pat yourself on the back for doing 2 minutes, it took me a while to build up to that and I'm only going for about 30 min. An hour would kill me right now!

Easing your way in will help avoid injury too - I hope Karen (above) feels better!