Not Quite As Fast As A Speeding Bullet…But Getting There

Pace Aug 8Good progress on the walk today. I’ve reduced my overall pace by 2 minutes, going from 18:48 to 16:46/mile.  Sweet. Tomorrow we’ll see if I can do this two days in a row or if yesterday’s day off skewed today’s results.

A few weeks ago, I set a goal to consistently walking 4 miles a day, 5 days a week. Speed didn’t matter. I set my sights on distance.

I’m happy to report I’ve hit my goal. Now I need to push myself.  What better way than to focus on how fast I walk 4 miles. The new goal? An overall pace of 15 minutes/mile. Right now it takes me about 75 minutes to walk 4 miles. I want to get that down to 60 minutes.  I just need to keep pushing myself, especially on the uphill part of my trail.

split statsLooking at my splits, Mile 3 – the up hill section of my walk – took the longest at 18:29.  I don’t know what happened to me the last mile. At 14:39, it was by far my fastest.  I think I just wanted to get out of the humidity as fast as possible.

I would love to hit the 15 minute/mile mark by mid September. A tall order now that we are in the dog days of summer. But I’m up for the challenge.

Well, time for that protein shake!

My First 5K

Crossing the finish line at my first 5K. Next year I'll be running, not walking.

Crossing the finish line at my first 5K. Next year I’ll be running, not walking.

Today was my first 5K and I loved it. I’ve never moved faster. I’ve been averaging 16:38/mile during my 3-mile walks. Not this morning. Say hello to 15:44/mile.

I’m always fastest during my first mile. I just go too fast and start to run out of gas. Well something changed during the 5K. I became progressively faster each mile. By the end of my second mile, I had shaved 10 seconds off of my first mile pace. By the time mile 3 came and went, I was 8 seconds faster than mile 2.

I didn’t feel winded. I didn’t run out of gas. So what gives?

During the 5K, my competitive juices kicked in. I officially wasn’t racing. I didn’t have a timer since I was a walker. But as the 5K progressed, I picked out people who I needed to catch up with and pass. I have no idea why, but that became my motivation. Perhaps its simply because when I do my daily walks I’m alone. It’s just me against my timer. Not today!

Pack of teenage girls engaged in the world’s most insipid, shallow conversation…had to blow past them so my head wouldn’t explode.

The gaggle of old lady power walkers who had an incredibly fast pace at the beginning…became the hares to my tortoise.

But hats off to one woman who I designated my archenemy. She walked a very steady pace. Throughout the race, she was the one I had to catch. No matter how close I got, I couldn’t pass her. It was infuriating. How did I get so close only have her pull further away? It wasn’t until the middle of mile 2 that I learned her secret. She would walk for 5 minutes then breakout into a jog for 30 seconds. She was interval training during the 5K. As soon as I caught up to her or even passed her, she would just breakout into a jog and blow right past me. It only made me want to go faster – but since I haven’t started interval training, running is my kryptonite. She used her ninja powers to finish about 6 seconds ahead of me. Thanks to that “defeat,” my interval training will start soon.

Next year I plan to kick her ass.

What In The Sam Hill Is Going On With My Spilts?

April 12 WalkToday has been a bit stressful. So I decided I just needed to get out of the house for a nice 3 mile walk. My first 5K is tomorrow so I if I could average a 16:30 pace/mile I’d be happy.

I went fast right out the shoot. Stressful days require channeling that energy and walking fast was a better choice than punching. When I hit mile 2, I decided to slow the pace up a bit. I really wanted some gas in the tank for when I started going uphill on mile 3. I finally settled in on a really comfortable pace.

April 12 SpiltsFor my last mile, which was up hill, I got super hungry but otherwise I felt great.

When I checked my splits after the walk, I was surprised and shocked that mile 3 matched my mile 1 pace. And my average mile was 16:26 – 4 seconds under goal. I really didn’t feel as if I was going that fast. Maybe I needed to release the stress. Or perhaps my body is simply adjusting and soon, I’ll need to push myself again.

Either way, I am awesome!

14:56 Baby!

Today is the first day of Weight watchers’ LiveLife Active Challenge. My goal today was to walk for 45 minutes, or 3 miles. I’ve been feeling a bit under the weather so I decided to break my walk into 2 segments – a fast morning walk and a moderate walk this evening.

For the fast walk, I just decided that I would go as fast as possible without jogging for one mile. My speed goal for the past few weeks is the elusive 15 minute mile.

Turns out today’s the day. I hit 14:56 during my morning walk. Since I was going a total of 2 miles, I nearly had nothing left to finish my walk. I actually had to stop after I hit one mile for about 45 seconds to catch my breath before continuing. Mile two I finished at a pace of 16:39 – not too shabby.

I now just have to keep building up my stamina to consistently hit 15 minutes for that first mile, but have enough gas in the tank to hit 15 minutes on that second mile.

Making My Feet My Friend

Tuesday 2013-03-19 at 9.11.10 PMToday’s walk was great. The weather was sunny and warmish. I must have been feeling good because today was my fastest pace. I hit 17:13 min/mile. The same route on Sunday I was at 17:30, and I was trying to walk fast since it was cold.

Last week I was averaging 2 miles a day. This week my goal is 2.5 miles/day. The plan is to do another 2.5 Wednesday and drop back to 2 miles on Thursday. Friday I’ll be back up to 2.5. If all goes well, I’m going to shoot for 4 miles on Easter.

Loving My Walking App

So far I’m lovin’ MapMyWalk. It is very easy to use (always a good thing for an app), its FREE (bonus!) and I love that I can track what I’ve done for the week.

Screen Shot 2013-03-13 at 5.03.33 PMI’ve just been using the record function when I start my walks – no set routes. I use the voice feedback function to tell me my pace, speed and calories burned. It also provides elevation stats to boot! Granted, I’m not facing any real inclines, but I’m working up to it, I promise.

I’m going to test its Create a Map function tomorrow morning. I’ve decided to create a walk around a park nearby our house. I’m shooting for 2.5 miles tops.

Hopefully I’ll have my walking playlist set by then. Who knew choosing the right songs would be so dang hard?!?

As for my progress, my pace picked up today – I averaged 17.03 min/mi compared to 17.39 min/mi on Monday. Sweet!

Picking Up The Pace

walk recordBefore my injuries in 2012, it was difficult for me to walk a block without having my lower back locking up on me forcing me to sit. While I had hoped that walking would be my primary exercise as I started losing weight, injury after injury stopped me in my tracks.  So until Feb. 2013, I hadn’t exercised at all – eating smart was the driver of my weight loss.

Yesterday was my first walk in about 8 months.  I decided to walk down to a grocery store and back – something simple.  Just wanted to test the waters. It was amazing! I felt great throughout the walk and had the feeling that it was way too short.  I walked nearly 2 miles with an average pace of 17 min/mi.  In 2012 I couldn’t cross the street without being in pain.  Down 58 lbs and pain free, can’t wait to strap on my Nikes and hit the pavement today.