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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
frankie

Jogging Diary

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My walking seems to be going quite well, I'm thinking of adding a little bit of exercise. I'm not sure yet what though, I'm too tired for anything too intensive or too tiring (if that makes sense). My boyfriend suggested book lifting (instead of weight lifting), which I thought was an excellent suggestion (seeing as I love to hold my books). I could also try to dance, I used to do that when I was younger (but I'm not sure if I could still do it, also it'd be tiring). Or I could try running up and down the stairs, move boxes around, run in the garden, jog, walk in the garden.. I can't do pushups, and for situps I kind of need my boyfriend to hold down my feet.

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That's still 3 exercise sessions a week Brian nowt wrong with that 

It is still 3 times a week but I was aiming for 6 at the time. I'm dropping into a de-load week this week so there are no weight this week just 4 short runs. I tried Fartlek running tonight for the first time with some forefoot running thrown in to work on my form and speed. It was hard but I really enjoyed it and even though I was mixing the speed a lot I ended up running a pretty good average pace. I think it's going to take a while to convert from a heel striker into a forefoot runner though, it obviously feels awkward at first.

 

 

Sounds like you are all a lot fitter than me! I don't like excercise for the sake of excercise [or warnings from the excercise police]but all my life I have been able to have enough energy to do most of the things that I want [or need] to do. I like walking, but don't do more than 2 miles at a stretch, I also like gardening, and the excercise in doing that, plus housework generally, shopping etc stops me getting fat.Now  that I am 'pension age' I am a bit kinder to myself and tend to do more of what I actually want to do.I think jogging is an un-natural thing, man is meant to walk, or run fast when danger presents itself. Animals don't jog.The inventor of jogging died while out jogging of a heart attack.Hmmmmmn! Some people do get addicted to excercise for the  'rush' or they want  taut muscle packed bodies I suppose [if you don't keep it going though, it all turns into fat.]Didn't a Greek philos. say 'all things in moderation',  that's a good philosophy to live by I think, can't think of a better.Although somebody else[ Noel Coward?] said 'you should try everything once,......except incest and morris-dancing'. :giggle2:

 

I understand your points and I completely get your 'exercise police' comment  :D  I do disagree with a few things however. Running comes in many more forms than just jogging and with equal logic you could claim that driving a car or eating processed food is unnatural but it doesn't make it wrong. Also the part I highlighted is a myth, muscle cannot turn into fat or vice versa, it is a scientific impossibility. What happens is that people eat more while they are doing exercise because the body requires the extra calories to recover and to fuel the exertion. They then stop, for whatever reason, but carry on eating the extra and the body stores the excess calories as fat. The muscle also wastes away because it is now not being used as much as it was before. On an evolutionary level the body will not waste calories maintaining muscle that isn't being used. Unfortunately the body has no limit to it's fat storing ability because when food was scarce this was essential for survival.

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Hi Brian, I have a question! How do you find your natural running style? Isn't that bad to try to force yourself to run in a particular way or can it help a lot? 

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That makes sense Brian! It explains why some people I know who used to be excercise crazy are now looking [as Mr Kipling might say] 'exceedingly fat!'  That's the cakemaker by the way not Rudyard. :D

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I exercise for enjoyment and for health. Without my daily walking on the treadmill I would probably be 6 feet under by now. I had angioplasty performed over 20 years ago (heart attack) and the walking exercise has kept me fit.

 

brian and vodkafan, you are both doing great.

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Hi Brian, I have a question! How do you find your natural running style? Isn't that bad to try to force yourself to run in a particular way or can it help a lot? 

 

Running style is variable for most people, it just depends on how fast you are running. For example, if you did a sprint you would almost certainly find yourself up on the balls of your feet but if you were going for a slow run you would probably be landing on your heels. Running is an inherently high impact activity and heel striking can lead to injuries in some people. There is little absorption when you land in this way and the foot also rolls from the outside of the foot to the inside of the foot as you transition from heel to toe on each stride. This roll can cause knee issues if you have tendency to roll too far in (over-pronation) so it can be quite important to have the right kind of running shoe. I am an over-pronator but aside from the odd sore shin I have never had any injury problems due to running. I put this down to the fact that I only ever increase my mileage slowly and in the early days I would mix walking and running a lot.

 

With all this said I have been looking to increase my pace so that I am faster over 5K. I have a coaching book and there are essentially only 2 ways to do this. The first is to increase cadence (the amount of steps in a minute) or to increase stride length. Increasing stride length is difficult because the body has a stride length that it likes and trying to push beyond that can be problematic. However, with the right kind of training you can increase your cadence which is limited by muscular endurance, aerobic capacity and lactate threshold. The thing is, heel striking makes increasing your cadence very difficult where as forefoot running allows you to go from a gentle pace to an all out sprint in the same running action.

 

I think because early on I was only interested in running for health reasons I settled into jogging at a pace which was just above walking pace. This lead me to be a heel striker and this is common across most of the population. However, if you look at the way the vast majority of middle/long distance athletes run, they are forefoot runners because this allows a much faster cadence in an easier way. There has been a big thing in running recently on 'barefoot running' because if you run barefoot you will forefoot run instead of heel striker. There is an evolutionary aspect to this movement and as a result some shoe manufacturers are making shoes for this purpose. Vibram make a shoe called the 'five finger' for this purpose, personally I'm not entirely convinced by the barefoot aspect of it. I have nothing against it but there is no reason why someone can't change their running form and still wear normal running shoes. I tend to suspect that marketing has got in the way of a genuinely interesting bio-mechanical question.

 

Finally (jeez, I can bang on for a while) I don't think it will cause any real issues by changing my running form and the experts seem to back this up. Sure there will be a few issues along the way but as long as I ease into slowly I think I will be fine. I noticed that after my Fartlek run with some forefoot running thrown in that my calves were a bit tighter than normal. This is common for those transitioning and I am going to give it a go for the rest of the year and see how it all works out. It also took concentration to maintain that form,  but I can heel strike for miles without even thinking about it. I really want to get to a sub 20 minute time the for 5k and I can't see any reason why I can't achieve that.

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That's something I might have to look into. I don't really know what my running gait is any more- it's been a few years since I have ran regularly- I DO know that I really really dislike jogging, or "running" at walking speed. I find it really jarring and it just feels wrong, that's why I don't do it. If I am not strong or fit enough to pick up my legs and run properly I would rather swim or do excercises until I feel fit enough to run.

That's really how I have felt for the last couple of years, my body  just hasn't felt right for running. 

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Running doesn't suit everyone and there isn't a lot to be gained from doing something you don't enjoy. Something like swimming is probably better in a whole body sense as you get upper body engagement as well, it's also very low impact. Something else I picked up from my coaching book last night was that when you land on your heels you are effectively braking your forward motion a little each time. This is inefficient and 'jarring' sums it up perfectly. It is possible to land on your heels more lightly but that requires quite a lot of effort and practice.

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That really makes sense Brian about putting a brake on when the heel strikes first. I also see people sometimes trudging along, taking very small steps slapping the whole foot down flat. These are the sort of unfit have a go joggers. I applaud them for wanting to get fit but it makes me wince when I see them as I feel they must be hurting themselves incrementally.

 

I had a great weights session today and this has started feeding back into the walking; because the leg muscles have something new to think about the walking is quite effortless I could probably walk double the distance I do now before I felt it! Desperately need some new trainers though might try to buy them next week. The compression gear is on hold although I want that too.

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I've booked up a session with a coach who specializes in forefoot running for next weekend. He'll analyze my running gait in my usual trainers and then show me what changes to make so that I can run forefoot. He'll also go through drills and a training program to help my development into it.

 

On a slightly different note I have entered into the Milton Keynes MoRun 5K in November. It's in aid of prostate cancer and fits in with Movember. I haven't decided whether I want to do it in fancy dress yet or not.

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That will be a good test then as you will have time to incorporate the new forefoot training. If you do dress up what would you fancy? I would have to be Darcy.

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I haven't pull much thought into it but since I'll be sporting a dodgy mustache of some kind I was thinking about Freddie Mercury.

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I haven't pull much thought into it but since I'll be sporting a dodgy mustache of some kind I was thinking about Freddie Mercury.

 

It all depends on how the mustache goes. For instance , you might well grow a "Stalin" or a "Dennis Hopper" or a "Chaplin"

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Great week last week

 

Week 7

 

Monday         40 minutes incidental walking

Tuesaday      Walk 5 miles plus 40 minutes incidental walking

Wednesday   Walk 5 miles gym good weights session

Thursday       Walk 5 miles 

Friday            Walk 5 miles gym good weights session

Saturday        Walk 5 miles

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Well done, James! I'm still walking with the dogs each day, but I've been too tired to include any more exercise. Well, one step at a time. (although I did do some incidental weight lifing in the weekend (I carried stuff)).

Edited by Athena

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Well done, James! I'm still walking with the dogs each day, but I've been too tired to include any more exercise. Well, one step at a time. (although I did do some incidental weight lifing in the weekend (I carried stuff)).

haha I like that!  ;)  Such incidental work outs are what keeps life fun sometimes

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Well I'm planning on trying jogging.  I've had long walks in the past, swimming and cycling.  Since I haven't been very active in the past two years and am now carry extra weight I'm starting with walking.  I've had 3 power walks this week 2km-4km, partly uphill since there is a hill where I live.  My immediate incentive for the walks is to visit all the libraries in a 6km radius.  I have done this years ago and it was very effective, new reading material that day without having to order it and wait for it to get to my local library.  Then there was the opportunity to read al fresco in the parks on my walking routes.  I'd also taken the 2km walk to have a swim and play squash rather than use the one a few hundred metres from my home then walked back home.  I ended up fit enough to try capoeira then.  This time I'm not swimming due to having skin allergies causing trouble.  I am also starting yoga again.

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Good for you Kreader! The combination of walking and yoga should yield good results fairly soon. :smile:

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Can I offer some advice Kreader?

 

If you want to try jogging I would suggest following a couch-to-5k plan. They start off with say 30 seconds of jogging followed by walking for a minute which is repeated a number of times. Over the weeks the length of time spent jogging increases and the number of walking breaks reduce. It can feel slow going at first but it ensures that you don't do too much too soon as this often leads to injury.

 

There are loads of smartphone apps which give you audio prompts as to when to run and when to walk and I used one of these when I started running. I went for a plan which gave me a set time to run for rather than a distance as pace varies between people.

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I had my coaching session with a 'barefoot' trainer yesterday and it was a real eye opener. I have been given quite a few foot and calf strengthening exercises to do during the transitional period. I'm going to have to slash my mileage right back and take it very slowly but in the long run I think this will end with me being able to run faster. Due to the fact that I can really run much, I went out on my bike this morning and it felt fantastic. I went out for 14 miles and kept my average speed above 16mph which is surprising because I haven't been out on my bike for a while.

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Week 8 was a bit of a breathing space. I had a couple of days off work and concentrated on other things. For one thing I started writing and did about 4000 words. But here's the  exercise bit:

 

 

Thursday         Walk 5

Friday              Walk 5

Saturday          Walk 5

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I had my coaching session with a 'barefoot' trainer yesterday and it was a real eye opener. I have been given quite a few foot and calf strengthening exercises to do during the transitional period. I'm going to have to slash my mileage right back and take it very slowly but in the long run I think this will end with me being able to run faster. Due to the fact that I can really run much, I went out on my bike this morning and it felt fantastic. I went out for 14 miles and kept my average speed above 16mph which is surprising because I haven't been out on my bike for a while.

 Sounds very interesting about the coaching Brian 

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I am still walking but not going to the gym as I am trying to find time to write.

Until I start something new I am going to stop logging it on here as I am sure it is getting boring to read!

So here is the last for a while; weeks 9 and 10 were the same:

 

Tuesday            Walk 5 miles

Wednesday       Walk 5 Miles

Thursday           Walk 5 miles

Friday               Walk 5 miles

Saturday           Walk 5 miles

 

I have lost about 3 inches off my waist and gained about 1 and a half inch on my calves and generally look very fit; somebody at work remarked on it the other day which was unexpected.

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