Tag Archives: Fitness

I need these for my feet! (Credit: Wikipedia)
May. 06.

Run, Robyn! RUN! Now With Added Cycling

Robyn RI’m now just short of a month in to my whole get fit thing, spurred on by how unfit, overweight and generally unhealthy I am. When I last posted about this, we were about two weeks in, and I was slowly starting to see some progress. The main thing is, am I still progressing?


I’m definitely improving. I’m sure of it. When this all started, I was barely able to walk 1500 metres before collapsing through the front door. Now, I am happily doing double that, or more, and still feeling good afterwards. If that isn’t improvement, then somebody tell me what is!


Baseline, still. As checked by my doctor this morning. It’s not an increase, true, but I need to start seeing a decrease. Hopefully as my fitness continues to go up, my weight will start coming down.

Workouts completed (Wed 25/04 – Tue 05/05):

No official workouts from the Couch to 5K. I am still concentrating on walking, and trying to increase the distance and pace as I go.

  • Walks completed: 4
  • Total distance: 11.69 km
  • Total Time: 1:43:12
  • Of note: 25 April – 3.14 km in 28:35 (9:05 min/km avg) – My first time over 3km. Felt really good about this. Obviously I wan to make this kind of walk one of the shorter ones, but still, it is a target to beat and keep moving out.
  • Best Pace & distance: 30 April – 3.27 km in 27.29 (8:24 min/km avg) Getting both of these together was amazing. I knew I was pushing myself a bit, and this is why.

Okay, this is fewer workouts than last update, and shorter total distance, but each individual one was longer, and I have another set of workouts to add.

Cycling Workouts (Wed 29/04 – Wed 06/05):

I have added cycling into the mix for this, having purchased a new bike last week. This is easier for me, as is it much lower impact on the knees. I can last longer on the bike, and by working both cycling and walking in tandem, It provides some variety.

My new wheels! (Credit: Giant Bicycles)

My new wheels! (Credit: Giant Bicycles)

  • Cycles completed: 5
  • Total distance: 58.5 km
  • Total Time: 3:31:57
  • Of note: 29 April – 24.05 km in 1:26:53 (16.6 km/h avg) – There is only one way I had to bring the new bike home. Cycle it. First time cycling in years, and I chose it to be a longer distance, on roads I don’t know. I got there though.

Problems Encountered:

Hill climbing is hard: Hills, the bike and myself are currently not in agreement. Hills are usually winning. I will start eating them up as I get more time and distance onboard for the bike, and my ability improves. It is something I just have to work at though.

Personal Notes:

The weather is trying to be awkward, and raining on me. I am still trying to get out between showers if I can, whether it is for a walk or a cycle. I’ve also been taken off the medication for my blood pressure. I’ve been told that the best way for me to sort it is to ditch the weight, and I have a review with my doctor in 3 months to see what has been done. Time to get to work!

Next steps:

I need to start being more mindful of what I am eating. I am an absent minded snacker. I do, though, have history of laying off crisps. I once gave them up for lent, and was still off them 18 months later. I am not saying I need to deny myself all treats. I just need to be more aware of what I am, or am not eating.

I need these for my feet! (Credit: Wikipedia)

I need these for my feet! (Credit: Wikipedia)

I also, when I have everything for the bike sorted, will need to look at new running shoes. If I can find ones with the right level of impact cushioning, I may be able to up the intensity on two legs too!


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My usual domain. 60 seconds from house is 2km of paved paths!
Apr. 23.

Run, Robyn! RUN! Where Robyn Learns to Walk First

Robyn RIn case anyone hadn’t noticed, two weeks ago I started working on the Couch to 5K running program, and well, it showed that I was overweight, unfit and basically needed to do everything possible to change that. My doctor agreed with me. And, as accountability is a cruel, heartless bitch, I said I would publicly document my progress. This is my first update.


Still pretty poor, but it is improving. I find myself being able to do more, for longer, and slightly faster than I was before. There is still a long way to go to improve sufficiently, but everyone has to start from nothing and work up. I am getting better, and I am happy about it.


Unchecked from previous baseline. I will either have to buy a scale, or get out the Wii Fit board and get a reading from it for next time.

My usual domain. 60 seconds from house is 2km of paved paths!

My usual domain. 60 seconds from house is 2km of paved coastal paths! (credit: Google Maps)

Workouts completed (Fri 10/04 – Wed 22/04):

No official workouts from the Couch to 5K. I am having difficulty with impact pain in my legs with jogging (more on this below) however, I am instead putting in a lot of walking time.

  • Walks completed: 7
  • Total distance: 13.3 km
  • Total Time: 1:59:56
  • Of note: 15 April – Dun Laoghaire East Pier – 2.27km in 22:17 (9:48 min/km avg) and 20 April – Shankill Beach 2.27 km in 19:35 (8:37 min/km avg) I am picking out these as they are equal distance, but I completed the latter almost 3 minutes faster. This shows, in my eyes, that something is happening to make things easier.
  • Best Pace: 8:30 min/km over 1.98 km (16:52) on 18 April
  • Best distance: 2.61 km in 22:55 (8:46 min/km avg) on 22 April
The ideal motivator. Once you get to the end, you have to get back! (credit: Google Maps)

The ideal motivator. Once you get to the end, you have to get back! (credit: Google Maps)

Problems Encountered:

Leg Pain: I am suffering with a lot of leg pain when I go to jog which is not present in walking, which I can only attribute to the higher impact pressure. This caused me to pull up on an attempt at interval training within 30 seconds. My doctor has advised me to not run before I can walk, saying that at the moment it is like asking someone to pick up two full suitcases, and then run. It doesn’t work. So, I am keeping to walking for now.

Medical complication/motivation: Last week I was diagnosed with high blood pressure, and put on medication for it. Typically, once you are on blood pressure medication, you are on it for a very long time. I have been told though, that if I can get my weight sorted and get fit, the blood pressure should correct itself. If that isn’t motivation, I don’t know what is.

Personal Notes:

At first I expected this to be a chore to have to push myself through, but over the past few days I have relished the challenge of pushing myself a little further, or a little faster each time. In fact, while I was happy with my new best distance on Wednesday, I thought I was going to get a faster pace too, and was slightly disappointed to not get it. I remember thinking to myself in the shower afterwards, that I will have to make sure I improve on it next time. I do think I am getting a little more competitive, even if I am only competing with my own mind.

Next steps:

One thing I used to do a lot was cycling. I was a cycle commuter for a time, and I was much healthier because of it. The time has come to get back on two wheels and get going again. So, in the next week, I hope to have a new bike, and to cycle the wheels off it, again working up on distance, and in tandem keeping up with walking/running.


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r white
Apr. 08.

Waffle Wednesday: Run, Robyn! RUN!

ww-logo-thYesterday, I did something seemingly crazy for me. I got out of the house, went down to the pathways by the beach in gorgeous sunny Shankill, and I went for a run. This is not something I do, but yesterday I started the Couch to 5K program, and after I got clearance from my GP to keep going (she saw no reason not to, but due to my unique health issues I thought it prudent to ask) I am going to force myself to complete it. These will be my chronicles. They will only be every couple of weeks, but making it public makes me want it to be as good as it can be.

Before running baseline:

Fitness: I’m going to use the zombie apocalypse test. Basically, if you were being chased by a horde of ambling zombies, how likely are you to get away and survive. Currently, I’d be lucky to get away from the shambling, ambling ones. The ridiculously fast 28 later style ones, forget about me, go and lead your lives! In all honestly, I’ve been laid up for 18 months nearly, being told to do nothing, and *holds hands up* I’ve been inactive a lot longer than that. I used to play softball, but had to give it up as it was affecting my knees.

Weight: Prefer not to say, but may be equivalent to a small car or baby elephant (only a SMALL exaggeration). When my GP weighed me today, I was 3KG lighter than I was just before surgery in February, but I could still stand, or run, to lose a large amount of this.

First Workout:

C25K, Week 1, Day 1: The most basic workout you can get. The very beginning. Warm up walk for 5 minutes, jog 1 minute & walk 90 seconds repeating for total of 20 minutes. Warm down 5 minutes. Total 30 minutes.

I lasted 20 minutes of it. This disappointed me, as I wanted to hang in there for the full time, but impressed me, as it was about 15 minutes more than I thought I could do. It was not a great start, but it was a start, and in everything you have to start somewhere.

Problems encountered:

Shortness of breath: The 20 minutes took the wind out of me, quite literally. It took me a few minutes sitting down afterwards to get my breath back properly. If I needed proof of my being unfit, that was it.

Earphones: Standard in ear earphones are USELESS for this kind of thing. I found myself stopping every couple of minutes to put them back in (but did stop the clock while I did so) I’ve already picked up some sports earphones for next time.

Personal notes:

Once I got my breath back and was in the shower, I did feel a little good about the fact that I was even attempting it. I’m thinking that if I can keep breaking it into lots of small victories it will be easier to keep going, rather than looking (at the moment) at a seemingly unattainable goal. One step at a time, Robyn. One step at a time!


P.S. I know some of you read the title of this post as Run, Forrest, Run! Go on, admit it!

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