2 Miles

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Goal: be able to run 2 miles in 15 minutes

I've come to the terrible realization that I can no longer claim in-shapness without deep, crushing shame, and a long string of qualifiers.  Well... I could run 2 miles if I really wanted to... on a good day... when I'm warmed up and the beam of a full moon crosses the shadow ofWhat, now? Right now?  Yeah... today's not really a good day...

I've fallen to the lot of the fitness have-nots.  This actually happened long ago, but I consoled myself that there were probably folks worse off.  I was solidly upper-lower class.  The fact of the matter is, I can't run 2 miles if Natalie Portman in her glorious Amidala regalia was standing at the end.  Well, I'd die trying.

Hence, this 2 mile goal.  I shall spend half an hour before work every day at the gym, another gerbil trying to outrun that cruel treadmill.  There's a simple but effective strategy from the project management playbook: formalize a goal, break it into discrete, quantifiable chunks, and consistently measure progress, and you've gone a long way toward actually achieving that goal.  I will, therefore, record here my progress every couple days.  Mile by terrible mile.

Nov 2821:00

Dec 03 — 20:30
Shins really hurting at the end... could barely walk rest of day

Dec 05 — 20:00
Made it on 6 mph the whole way

Dec 06 — 19:40
Sped up to 8 mph last .15 mile.  I think I'm starting to settle into the routine.  Muscles no longer hurt afterward.

Dec 07
Utter failure. Tried to go up to 6.5 mph.  Had to stop after 1.5 miles.  Made up a mile at 7 mph.

Dec 12 — 18:30
6.5 mph the whole way.  Gettin it done.  Muscles weren't that strained, but breathing was very difficult last half mile.

Dec 13 — 18:00
Went up to 7.7 mph the last quarter mile.  It's getting harder and harder to speed up.  Cardio, not muscle fatigue, is the limiting factor.  Couldn't wake up today and had to run after work.

Gym tip: There's much debate on whether morning or afternoon workouts are better.  A lot of folks don't take environmental factors into account.  For instance, if you must use the gym showers, early morning wins hands down.  Afternoons mean sharing stalls with at least 3 other large hairless apes who, ironically, have far too much hair.  You don't want that.  Workout 6:30 AM, and make other people deal with your pilary leavings.

Dec 14 — 17:40
Did last half mile on 7.8 mph.  HALF WAY THERE!!  The easy half.  But whatever, this is still cause for rejoice.

Dec 18 — 17:15
Squeezed out 6.8, with last half mile on 7.5 mph.  Unfortunately, the gym will be closed for a week over the holidays :(

Dec 26 —
I AM DISAPPOINTS.  First day back at it after the holidays.  Could not finish last quarter mile.

Dec 27 — 17:00
6.8 mph, last half mile on 8.  Milestone breached.  With blood and iron.

Jan 25 — 16:40
First day back on the treadmill today!  I'd stopped running for about a month due to gym closures and illness.  Made half a mile on 8mph and the rest on 7, which is better than before the break.  I was quite impressed with myself.  Then I read that the current marathon record is about 12 mph.  For TWENTY SIX miles.  I think I prefer ignorance.

Feb 7 — 16:30
I have a sneaking suspicion my 16:40 time on the 25th was aided by a broken treadmill.  It was WAY too easy, especially after weeks away from the gym. In any case, 2 weeks later I've finally huffed, puffed, and cursed my way down to 16:30.  Patting myself on the back as I type this.

Mar 3— 16:15
I finally squeaked out 16:15 today after being stuck at 16:30 for quite a while.  I wonder whether it's my stamina or pain tolerance that's improved.


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