Running back into shape with the new 8 week Run Keeper program (Week 1)

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Introduction

Hi. My name is Abbey and I decided to start a running / getting in shape blog. At first I thought I’d just do this for myself, but then I decided that it would be good to share with anyone who is interested in joining along! My reason for doing this is that I really wanted to approach getting in shape differently so that I don’t lose motivation somewhere along the way like I usually do. I also have personal goals in doing this that are: increasing my indurance as well as get into the best shape I can at 34 years old! Instead of doing things the way that I normally do, I decided to digitally track my way back into good shape to not only motivate myself now, but to motivate me in the future (as well as the hopes to motivate others). Throughout this blog, I will explain the programs that I’ve begun using as well as tracking each of my workouts and how they went and include some nutrition blogs and information that I find useful along the way. I am starting with this running program for the initial start as well and for the meat of the workouts, but I will also be including other workouts that I enjoy, such as pilates, yoga, surfing, swimming, Standup Paddling as well as occasional hikes & trail runs.

For a little background on me, I’m a 34 year old certified pilates instructor from Southern California who currently lives on the small island of Bali, Indonesia and have been for the last 3 years. I’ve always been extremely active doing mostly water sports likes surfing, standup paddling, swimming, running, triathlon training as well as yoga and pilates and I’ve always been that girl that was self-motivated…up until the last few years of moving to a new place that was unfamiliar and harder to have consistency in my schedule and routine. In the past two years, I feel like I’ve somehow become a bit less motivated and it has finally bothered me so much, that I decided it was time to make a permanent change and set myself up for success instead of starting something that loses motivation when I’m not being challenged by active people around me. Bali is a different way of life with many different types of people who you do not typically see outside exercising like you would in Southern California. The priorities of people are much different here that they would be in Southern California, not to mention, it’s HOT. So, I decided that instead of going along with the flow of everything around me, to instead go back to the basics of who I am and what makes “Abbey her happy inspired self”…and that is being athletic and constantly active no matter where I live or what the circumstances are (taking good health into consideration).  This, of course, takes me to another main reason for starting this new journey…and that is that the base of my career as a pilates instructor is to inspire the people that I am teaching to push themselves, so I too need to be a good example of what that looks like. I guess you could call it pressure, but it is motivating me, so i guess that’s a positive thing. After all, how can you inspire others if you yourself are not inspired?  So I’ve decided that it needs to end if I truly want to be the best pilates instructor that I can….so i’m starting here…vulnerable, humbled, motivated and fairly inspired….so let’s do this, shall we?!

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Getting started using some fun tools of motivation 

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I’ve started a new program that I’m trying out with an app that I added on my phone called: Run Keeper and within that program i started a personalized running schedule (there are many to choose from). If you’d like to check it out it’s: http://runkeeper.com. So far I have completed two runs that required for me to run a 5 min. warmup then at a consistent pace for 30 min. I realized how out of shape i am when I was literally out of breath at min. 26 on the first run at Jimbaran Beach and the second run wasn’t too much better. I am about to embark on my third run and I’m hoping that this one is a little bit better than the first two. I am going to go back to Nusa Dua since it is a flat run, there is shade and Bali is HOT in the afternoon. I also need to make sure i bring plenty of water with me because I had to stop a few times during my first two runs for that reason.

I’ve now uploaded the Run Keeper program and I love it. I am also tracking my heart rate twice a day with Cardiio : http://www.cardiio.com in order to keep track of both my resting heart rate as well as my active heart rate in order to see how it changes over time. Last winter I also purchased the Fuel Nike Band which is keeping track of how much I am calories I am burning, and the online program that comes with the bracelet automatically keeps track of how much I’m burning. I link up the bracelet with either my iphone or my computer and use the blue tooth device in order to track it. Lastly, I also purchased some sugar free 100% natural pre-workout boost by the brand MRM called, Driven. I take a scoop 30 min. prior to exercise and so far it seems to work really well, especially when it is hard to motivate in the afternoon time.

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The gear that I’m using to motivate and push me to get in shape. 

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The view @ Jimbaran Beach on Run #1

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The water blow hole in Nusa Dua on Run #2

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My bright pink running shoes on Jimbaran Beach on Run #3

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Back at the water blow hole again for Run #4

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This week’s run workouts

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SUNDAY, APRIL 14, 2013

30 Min. Steady which consists of: a 5 min. warmup & 30 min. steady

TUESDAY, APRIL 16, 2013

30 Min. Steady which consists of: a 5 min. warmup & 30 min. steady

THURSDAY, APRIL 18, 2013

30 Min. Steady which consists of: a 5 min. warmup & 30 min. steady

SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 2013

30 Min. Steady which consists of: a 5 min. warmup & 30 min. steady

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Some Motivational tips & articles to achieving specific goals

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So, I’ve got this Competitor Magazine in front of me, and it gives tips and action plans for getting fit and improving your overall fitness & energy level as well as accomplishing other goals, like dropping 5 pounds and getting a “six-pack”. Sounds pretty much too good to be true, but titles always do. The true test would be ACTUALLY doing it. 🙂

First, in order to get fit and improve your overall fitness & energy level: There are 6 building blocks that are as follows: 1.) Stick to a plan & write down your goals. Find a training plan that fits exactly what you want to accomplish. 2.) Run with a group or hire a coach. 3.) Build your base 4.) Get more sleep….important for recovery. 5.) Change your shoes 6.) Do the extra stuff…like stretching and strengthening. Put the extra 10-15 min. both before and after workout in.

Second is: Losing 5 pounds and what it takes: Create a balanced approach by starting gradually, not drastically…and cut back overall quantity of food. If you cut back drastically it will trigger your body to slow down it’s metabolism and will make it more difficult to drop the extra weight, so this is important. 1.) Start by cutting out excess calories: decrease your calorie intake by 250 to 500 calories a day. 2.) Focus on plants: meals should include satiating veggies and fruit with moderate amount of lean protein, healthy fat and carbs. 3.) Hydration is absolutely imperative in order to lose weight. Drink 2-3 cups first thing in the morning, sip throughout the day and hydrate after training. 4.) Log it: keep an honest nutrition journal to encourage mindfulness. 5.) Follow the 90% rule which is to focus on healthy, nutrient-dense foods 90% of the time.

Third is: Getting Six-Pack Abs: In order to do this you need to lean down…10% total body fat for men and 18% total body fat for women. A healthy clean diet and training program with high-intensity workouts can make six-packs an achievable reality, general strengthening of a runner’s core muscles will also improve performance. A stronger core will make you faster. 1.) Cut down the amount of sugar you are eating as well as excess carbs. 2.) Up the intensity of your workout adding intervals and hill sprints to your regimen. Constantly change the training stimulus. 3.) Eat Clean eating complex carbs and whole foods. 4.) Do planks on a balance ball and bring the ball in and out.

Last is: Reviving your enthusiasm: Run because it’s fun. Look at children running…they are always doing something different, not routine. 1.) Try non-judgement….don’t take yourself so seriously 2.) Switch it up and vary your routine. 3.) Find Balance by doing other things besides running…like yoga & pilates. 4.) Sometimes ditch the electronics and just connect with nature. 5.) Stock up on cheap comfortable clothes to workout in. 6.) Try to wean yourself from depending on your watch for learning pace after you know what a “goal” feels like. 7.) Fuel up on simple foods instead of workout gels and packets that are filled with corn syrup & food coloring. 8.) Hit the Trails on the days that you are recovering from a difficult workout or an extra long run. Seek soft surfaces and gorgeous views. “Sometimes it’s best to pare down everything and just go for a run with the barest of essentials.”

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