August 25, 2010

So… as part of my re-conditioning I have agreed to run a 5K, which is officially 10 days away.  At 315 lbs, this will be no small task to complete.  For the last few weeks, I have taken to doing a walk/ run program called the “Couch to 5K” running program, which is great, but the program is set up for a 90-day training plan, and I had about 50 days once I committed to the race.

So herein lies the problem… I’ve been training, and doing pretty well considering my current physical state, but I need to ensure I’m ready to roll for Labor Day Monday.  I can complete a 3.2 mile course right now in a combination of walking and running in about 43 minutes, but I don’t have anyone “pushing” me when I run at this point, well, because there’s no one around to push me.  Also, I’ve been doing this A LOT – up to, until recent advice, 2x’s a day for anywhere between 5-7 total miles depending on how I feel.

So my questions to anyone who runs are: 
Is this too much running for someone in my position (ie: completely out of shape) to be doing? 
Since I am preparing for a race, should I be just running like I have been, or should I still be mixing it up with other activities that can also help with my cardio/ endurance? 
How do you pace yourself to ensure you’re getting the most out of yourself/ your run when you’re alone? 

Keep in mind, the race is in 10 DAYS, so I’m trying to get the most bang for my buck, so to speak.  I need help people… even if you can help with something that I didn’t ask about, give it to me!

Thanks in advance… 🙂


  1. Stick to the running and I use gmaps pedometer to lay out what distance I will run and just use my watch to track my time. At this point in time, try to complete 10ks daily and work on improving time. Buy a foam roller and use that to recover and to aid in better stretching. Take one day off before the race and well, you'll be surprised as to how much faster you will run with everyone else around!

  2. Gach, first off, way to go, man!If you have worked up to walk/running 5-7 miles a day, straight from being a couch potato, then great work! However, if you are doing this 7 days a week, every week, then this is not good for your muscles.You need to build in some recovery time to allow your leg muscles to heal. When you exercise, your muscle fibers tear up. When they heal, they become stronger than they were before. Without the proper recovery time, the muscle tissue cannot rebuild itself. You will eventually plateau and perhaps decline. This is why you don't bench press to failure every single day of the week. Applies to running as well.I'd recommend a day of rest in between each run. Day of rest doesn't have to mean go back to the couch for a day. Mix in an upper body or core workout or just go for a light walk that day. You will shed more weight if you have a full body exercise regimen. Running is nice, but it shouldn't be the only exercise you do.The final two weeks before a race, you're supposed to cut down your miles. If you've been crushing yourself, your body needs this recovery time. You might want to consider cutting your miles in half the week of the race.Change up your running routine. You say you are doing a combo of walking and running. I assume that means you run for awhile, get tired, walk, run some more, get tired, walk, etc. This is fine, but each week, try to mix that up even more. In the morning, tell yourself that you are just going to run with no walking breaks. Set a reasonable goal for that distance. Only allow yourself to walk when you cool down. That evening, go for a long walk- no jogging, no running- to help with recovery. Next day is a rest day for your legs; do an upper body or core workout. Following day, do your normal walk/run/walk/run that you've been doing. Then a rest day. Repeat. Increase the miles that you're running the next week. Mix up the routes that you take.In the next 10 days respect the recovery rule, cut down your miles the final week leading up to the race, drink tons of water (ask your doctor), and get at least 8 hours of sleep a night. Don't make excuses to ignore any of this.Set a goal before you set out, remind yourself of that goal when you start quitting, and bust your ass to achieve it. Next time, set the bar a little bit higher or a little bit lower, depending on how you did. It is a long process. You can't expect results overnight or in 10 days.Don't know if any of this was obvious to you or not. Hopefully something I said helped. Best of luck!

  3. Congrats man. Take it e z. Injury will set your plans back.I liked this article on walking and running. Keep your head up and go slow.http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/06/01/why-walk-breaks-help-you-run/

  4. Thanks everyone! yesterday I actually ran with a partner for one of the first times and did considerably better ie: I have absolutely NO CLUE how to push myself, however I don't wanna embarrass myself in front of anyone else! And Grant – thanks for the article… that actually makes a ton of sense, and I think my goal should look more like that as opposed to a goal of 'don't stop, don't stop!' once I actually get to the race.

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