Today’s Workout

4.29 miles walked. 5.13 miles ran. My heart rate during the runs never hit the red line; that is, it never went above 160. The highest heart rate was 158. During the walks, my heart rate never went into any zone. So, my heart rate recovery time was pretty damn good.

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Last Cup

It’s gorgeous outside, and I’m looking forward to a run. However, I’m working on my last cup of coffee. Quite frankly, I’m not going to do anything until I’ve had my requisite volume of coffee. Trust me; you’ll be thankful that I accomplish this one simple task.

Pushed Too Hard

I exceeded my maximum heart rate today. I should not go over 164 bpm. I maxed out at 167. And I had a rate over 160 bpm for 7 minutes and 5 seconds. Part of the reason I had a high heart rate was the 120 pushups I did during my stretch before running. The other reason is the warmer weather. So, I need to drink some water to cool down my core. Otherwise, I’m going to experience an elevated heart rate for most of the day. I also tend to be spacy when I’ve redlined for too long.

Past efforts considered I’ve pushed myself harder. I did pull back on my exertion once Runtastic told me I was in Zone 5 (which is the Red Line Zone).

Blah

That’s how I feel today. I’ve got nothing. Oh, the run in the light shower was excellent. And my stretch afterward actually felt productive. I’m not feeling it today. Not sure what’s up. It’s not anything awful. I’m just blah.

I have to admit, my body did wake up achy and stiff. The run and the stretch seems to have cleared that up. So, I’m not sure what’s going on. Best to probably go with it. Asking why isn’t an effective problem-solving action. In fact, it creates more problems than it solves. Best to go with asking what is wrong. And what’s wrong is I’m feeling blah. I’ll go with that.

Blowsery Weekend

It was cold and windy this past weekend, leaving me bereft of any desire to mow the lawn. There is no wind today, so I best get out there and mow down the prairie that has sprung in my front yard.

Ash In Their Feather Dusters

The villagers, he said, knew about the camp, and watched daily as thousands of prisoners would arrive by rail car, herded like cattle into the camp. Even though the camp never could have held the vast numbers of prisoners who were brought in, the villagers knew that no one ever left. They also knew that the smokestack of the camp’s crematorium belched a near-steady stream of smoke and ash. Yet the villagers chose to remain igno­rant about what went on inside the camp. No one inquired, be­cause no one wanted to know.”

“But every day,” he said, “these people, in their neat Ger­manic way, would get out their feather dusters and go outside. And, never thinking about what it meant, they would sweep off the layer of ash that would settle on their windowsills overnight. Then they would return to their neat, clean lives and pretend not to notice what was happening next door.”

”When the camps were liberated and their contents were revealed, they all expressed surprise and horror at what had gone on inside,” he said. “But they all had ash in their feather dusters.”

Excerpt from “ASH ON THE SILLS: THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE
PATRIOT MOVEMENT IN AMERICA”
By David Neiwert

About Running

Back in 2012 or 2013, I decided to switch from bicycling to running. I remember my first effort at, well, let’s call it jogging instead of running. If I managed a mile in 20 minutes, I would consider myself lucky. It was an embarrassing affair, to say the least. I would plod along at a jog slower than I could walk. Well, that’s how it felt. At over 250 lbs and decidedly out of shape I was lucky to not have a coronary.

One of the things I adopted early on was measuring my heart rate. The miracle of modern technology allowed me to pace myself. My first heart rate monitor was a Runtasic device that seemed to fail after about 20 minutes, reading my heart rate in half the actual amount. Next came a Fitbit. It worked better than the Runtastic’s device. Unfortunately, it didn’t work with the Runtastic app. And I found the Fitbit app less than adequate. It’s map function, and ability to post to social media was both cumbersome and less than visually appealing.

I now own an Apple Watch. It works with the Runtasic app in ways that I couldn’t have imagined. The watch itself can control the app. So, now I can put my phone in a baggie on rainy days and start and stop Runtastic just with the watch.

Anyway, let me get back to the point I wanted to make. I set goals for myself when I started running. There were two things I wanted to accomplish. One, I wanted to lose weight. In my wildest dreams , I wanted to get back under 200 lbs. However, I thought that a bit extreme. So I set my sights on 220 lbs. I am currently fluctuating between 215 to 218. Late last fall, before the onset of the holiday seasons I managed to get down to 209 lbs.

As to pace; I set a goal of being able to run a sub-10-minute mile pace. I have done that on several occasions. It is yet to be consistent, but I’m getting there. Here is where the heart rate comes into play. Before I monitored my heart rate, I would push myself as hard as I could. I would be physically exhausted, and I couldn’t bring myself to exercise for several days. The Runtastic app educated me on the proper heart rate I should be maintaining while exercising. As a result, I started to ignore my pace and stick to the heart rate.

Today I am happy to say I have been able to keep myself from going over 160 beats per minute while running a sub-10-minute mile. As noted above, my weight has gone up due to the winter/holiday season. However, I’ve worked on setting up a simple gym of a treadmill and my bike downstairs and invested in winter running gear. My hope is not to lose any gains in both weight loss and running pace I make this summer. Indeed, I’ve set myself two new goals; to get below 200 lbs and to run a sub 9 minute mile. All while monitoring my heart rate.

And Keep Running!