Building Up My Running Skills (or Getting A New PR)

This past week at Orangetheory continued my re-introduction to running. I actually was feeling very scared before this week of workouts because I thought maybe the week before was a fluke and I wouldn’t be able to run again. I thought maybe that was a one week thing and I would be back to struggling during some of my power walking. And I was thinking that maybe the workouts wouldn’t be ones that I could figure out how to run during.

Fortunately, that wasn’t the case for me. I did have to play around a bit with how I added running into my cardio, but it wasn’t too difficult for me. With this past Monday being a holiday, the workout was a 3G class because so many people were signed up. So we only really had about 17 minutes for each block (and one block for the treadmill, one block for the rower, and one block for the floor). The plan for cardio was to do 1.5 miles as fast as possible. I knew there was no way I could do 1.5 miles in the time we had, so I told my coach I was going to try for a mile and he was ok with that. Since I’m still new to running, I didn’t want to go too crazy. But I really wanted to try to do a run/walk mile.

Since I had done a couple of 30 second runs, that seemed like a good plan to me. So I was going with 30 seconds of running followed by a minute of walking. The first few rounds went pretty easily for me. I was feeling really great and I thought that maybe I should try to do a bit more running than 30 seconds. But after I got about half a mile done, I was feeling very tired. I realized after the fact that I did my entire mile at 4% incline (runners only have to be at 1% while power walkers need to be at 4%), so I could have brought my incline down a bit. But once I got halfway done, I knew I was on pace for a great mile PR so I kept going. I kept up the 30 seconds of running/1 minute of walking pretty much the entire time. When I was close to the end, I wanted to try to finish up with about a minute of running so I did about 90 seconds of walking leading up to the last bit I had and I ran for a minute before I completed my mile.

1 Mile

My previous PR was almost exactly a year ago (before the calf tear) and it was 16:30. My dream was to get below a 16 minute mile (so I can do a Disneyland 5K). And while this was the first time I had added running into the mix, I had no idea that I would take an entire minute off of my mile time! I don’t think I could maintain this pace for a 5K yet, but this is such a positive sign to me!

After doing my mile, I still had 2/3 of my workout left. I did struggle a bit with the rest but I tried my best. We had a mile on the rower (1600 meters) and then our floor work was all sets of 100. We did squats, pushups, running men, swimmers, high rows on the straps, hop overs, and triceps dips. I didn’t make it to 100 of each thing, but I got close. But I didn’t really care too much since I killed it on my mile!

Wednesday was an endurance day, so I had to think about how to try to run on the treadmill. A lot of the push paces were between 90 seconds and 3 minutes, and there’s no way I can run that long yet. So I ran for the first 30 seconds of each push pace and then went down to a power walk (and raised my incline) for the rest of it. That seemed to work pretty well for me and I was able to really work on my running form. Because of my hip issues, I have issues walking in a straight line. So on the treadmill, I have to hold on while I walk because I can walk off the belt and if that happened I’m sure I’d fall off. I was holding on while I was running too, but on Wednesday I decided to test myself and I found that I actually can run in a straight line! I’m not sure why I can do that with running if I can’t with walking, but it might have to do with there being less time that my foot is down (and less chance for my hip to slip). While I was running for 30 seconds for my push paces, I did run for the entire minute that we had all-outs.

The floor that day was all arms, abs, and squats. I’m glad the leg work was a bit limited because my legs were feeling a bit weak after all that running. I know that I have to build up my running endurance and while I’ve done lots of walking cardio work, running is a new skill for me to work on. My body isn’t hurting as much as my lungs do when I’m running. But once I’m off the treadmill, I think the adrenaline I’ve got while I’m running goes away and I feel a bit weak. But soon the novelty of running will wear off a bit and I think the floor work will become a bit easier after cardio again.

Friday was a power day, so it was pretty ideal for me for running. We did have some longer push paces (3 minutes and 2 minutes) so I did the same thing I did on Wednesday where I ran for the first 30 seconds and then walked for the rest. That’s a good plan for me so far and I’m pretty happy with it. But after those long push paces, we had a lot of all-outs that were either a minute long or 45 seconds long. So I was trying to do my best to run for the entire time for those all-outs. I didn’t always succeed, but thinking that I ran for 1 minute straight 4 times is crazy considering that it was only about a week ago that I started running. I want to test my limits, but I know I have to take it easy too.

The floor on Friday was a bit tough. The first half was rowing (300 and 200 meters) and a lot of weight work focusing a lot on arms and abs. The second half had the same rowing and a lot of strap and ab roller work. I didn’t get as far in the blocks as I would have wanted to, but my body just wasn’t moving any faster!

Overall, I’m really happy how my running progress has been going. Obviously I wish it was super easy and I could run without having to worry about catching my breath, but that’s not realistic. I’ve got some goals in mind with the running that I think are very feasible such as being able to run for 90 seconds straight by the end of the month. Setting the small goals and milestones is going to be really important for me as I work on running more. I won’t have progress with running like I do with weight work or rowing, but the progress will happen eventually. But for now, I’m just proud of where I am so far and the fact that I’m doing any running at all!

One response to “Building Up My Running Skills (or Getting A New PR)

  1. Pingback: Truly My Peak Performance (or Exceeding My Expectations) - Finding My Inner Bombshell

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