Changing my body and changing my life

Archive for the ‘Marathon’ Category

A new challenge

I finished reading the book A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller. The book is about the concept of story – Miller was asked to make a movie out of a book he had written from experiences in his own life. He is a co-writer for the movie, and ends up editing his own life, thinking of it in light of what the story of his life is. He evaluates his present life as not that meaningful, and so starts to get up off the couch and try new experiences, such as a gruelling hike or a new romance. I’ll skip the new romance – my hubby might have problems with that, but the book has inspired me to do something different, something stretching, and something that involves my pursuit of health.

I’ve decided to enter the Manitoba Marathon.

I have never done ANYTHING like this before. In gym class, running was something I hated, as I huffed and puffed and fell behind everyone else and sometimes got migraines later. I bought a treadmill and started walking and  running not because of any affinity for it but because it required the least coordination, and I could watch TV on the treadmill and hopefully kill the boredom of it all. Over time, I have come to like how I feel after walking, and then jogging. But to race in an event? All new.

My options are the full Marathon (HA! No.) the half marathon (possible?) and the 10K run (I can go 7 km on the treadmill in an hour, so not much of a stretch). Today I decided to take my exercise outside and use the path near my place which is marked according to kilometres. I aimed for 10, put on a heart rate monitor and started jogging, stopping to walk only if my heart rate went above 162 (don’t ask where I came up with that number. I programmed it in to the heart-rate monitor when I first got it and can’t remember why). To my surprise, I was able to maintain a jog almost all the way, just doing walking about 4 times and at that, quite briefly. Somewhere along the way it was going so well I decided to just go the whole way and do 13 km and see if I could do a half marathon.

Any of you familiar with marathons are probably laughing at my right now, so let me tell you, within an hour of returning home I did realize my error. A half marathon is not 13 km, it is 13.1 miles. Still, I wondered if I could possibly do it – an increase of 7.1 km over what I did today, with 8 weeks to train. I looked up some training websites, and found a lot of people writing that the half-marathon is usually attempted after doing a few 5 or 10K runs. Which I’ve never done.

Still, I think I could do it. I don’t need to go for speed, the victory is in the completion. Even if I have to walk part way, I think I could complete a half marathon.

Middle child is interested in doing the 2.6 mile run after I told her about it; what a great thing for me to do with my daughter.

I have until May 8 to register for the Early Bird Amount, so I’ll begin training and see if it could be realistic to do the half.

My new helpful tool: Having a goal

My challenge is figuring out what to do about eating. If I’m training for a run, should I consider increasing my daily calories above the 1200-1400 level I’ve been trying to maintain? Do my muscles need more protein?