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Discouraged and going nowhere (Read 1576 times)

lavendergrey


    Hi...I'm new here.  I started running last June at age 56 after being basically non-athletic my whole life.  Did walking here and there but nothing real strenuous, and that is about it.  I began with the C25K program on my treadmill and loved it so saw it through.  Felt great and very happy...and then moved my runs outside when the weather here in the SW cooled down enough in the mornings.  Needless to say, running outside is very different (and more difficult, IMO) than treadmill running, so after struggling for a while with it I adapted and now don't like running on the treadmill.  I smoked for many, many years, and quit 15 years ago, but according to a lung capacity test I had about 11 years ago I have diminished lung capacity, but I don't recall the percentage, unfortunately.  I also have asthma, but that doesn't usually rear its ugly head unless I'm around animals I'm allergic to.  I do use my Albuteral inhaler before a run, since my doc suggested I do so to avoid any asthmatic issues, just in case. 

     

    I have run 2 5K races, doing intervals, did much better in the first one, and therein lies my problem.  I seem to be unable to improve and am now walking (power walking, I guess) more than I am running.  I run intervals but they are not long intervals, as I seem unable to breathe well and I also become very fatigued after a short time.  It is very discouraging for me, since it has been 8 months and I'm not improving and seem to actually be doing worse now.  I have found that my running seems easier now that I am power walking in the walk intervals, but I still tired easily and find I need to catch my breath.  I know in the past I have tried to run too fast, but at this point I think I'm going slow enough and learning to pace myself.

    I also am new to strength training, and I do yoga on off days.

     

    I run 3 days a week, usually between 2 1/2 to 3 miles per run.

     

    Any suggestions that would help me find some inner strength or ability to run further than 3.1 miles?  I'm quite discouraged and have had thoughts of giving it up, but I do love running.  Thanks for any and all advice.  Smile

    Scout7


    CPT Curmudgeon

      Run more often.  Try to run 4 or 5 or 6 days a week.

       

      Don't run intervals right now.  They aren't really helping you to run further.

       

      Run at a lower level of intensity.  Doing so will allow your body to recover between runs and build up your body properly.

       

      Don't run for distance, run for time.  Time tends to be more of a limiting factor for most people.

        Run more often.  Try to run 4 or 5 or 6 days a week.

         

        Don't run intervals right now.  They aren't really helping you to run further.

         

        Run at a lower level of intensity.  Doing so will allow your body to recover between runs and build up your body properly.

         

        Don't run for distance, run for time.  Time tends to be more of a limiting factor for most people.

        This is good advice.  

         

        Hey Scout, I think by "intervals" he meant intervals of jogging, alternating with walking (not hard intervals) and that now he is doing mostly walking.  

        "If you have the fire, run..." -John Climacus

        Scout7


        CPT Curmudgeon

          This is good advice.  

           

          Hey Scout, I think by "intervals" he meant intervals of jogging, alternating with walking (not hard intervals) and that now he is doing mostly walking.  

           

           

          Yeah, I wasn't sure.  But, I'm betting that the running part is still too hard for current fitness.

            Did you get checked out before you started working out?  If you're finding yourself getting tired much more easily, I wouldn't rule out checking in with your doctor.  It's worth making sure nothing else is going on ...

             

            When I've returned from injuries, I used an alternating jog/walk approach that worked really well.  I got some aerobic work in, but not by running for longer (or at a faster pace) than I was capable of at the time.  As my fitness built up, I increased the jogging portion and decreased the walking portion (but not too aggressively!).

            “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

            lavendergrey


              This is good advice.  

               

              Hey Scout, I think by "intervals" he meant intervals of jogging, alternating with walking (not hard intervals) and that now he is doing mostly walking.  

               

              Just a note...I'm a "she".  Wink   And, yes, by intervals I do mean walk/run intervals...not run/run harder or faster intervals.  I cannot stop doing intervals, unless I changed to just walking, since running for long distances (or times) is not working for me.  I have not considered running more than 3 days a week, because everything I've read and heard has been to make sure there is at least one rest day between runs.  So, I do yoga and strength training on the "rest" days.  I certainly could add a day or two in there, but would need to back off on the strength training, I guess.  Yoga is important for my back and joints, and I can't see myself spending hours on end several times a week trying to fit all these "training" activities in.  Not to mention I'm not a strong person and since my runs wipe me out (the 3.1 mile ones), I'd not likely have anything left to draw on to do other things like strength training, etc. 

               

              So, I can definitely add a day or two of running.  Perhaps that will do the trick and I'll see at least some improvement.  Thank you.

              Scout7


              CPT Curmudgeon

                Even with a walk/run interval, you can be training too hard during the run parts.

                 

                If you are going to increase the number of runs a week, ease into them.  That means you go real easy on the effort.  Also, there is nothing wrong with slowly building up the run interval portions over time.

                  And you don't need to cover 3.1mi every time.  I don't know what that workout duration converts to, but it's a good thing to vary your outings and not run the same distance/pace all the time.  Especially as you add more days, the cautious approach would be to initially scale back the duration of some of the runs.

                  “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

                    I'm betting that the running part is still too hard for current fitness.

                     

                    I agree that a "newbie" likely has a challenge determining what "easy" means.  Everything is hard and everything hurts.  Last year, I worked with my father in law (65 year old), and somehow guided him to be able to go from nothing to a 10k run (without walk breaks).  We started with "walk 1 minute, run 1 minute, repeat" and progressed to a point where he was running 5 minutes, walking 1 minute, and finally running straight through.  The decision to "graduate" to the longer run portion was based on heart rate information that he gathered through his Garmin.

                     

                    I would recommend having a heart rate monitor as a reminder of what a good easy run would be. 

                     

                    Last week, I saw a post by Ann-V that had a strategy to go from walk / run to fully running within a few weeks time.

                    The post had "0" and "+" strung together where the "0" represented either walking or running, and the "+" represented the other....

                    I forget who posted it or where it was, but that may be a good way to figure out how to do a complete 5k without walk breaks.

                     

                    MTA: found it: http://www.runningahead.com/forums/topic/555bc0bc533c49319d41272f5f669438

                    2014 Goals:

                    #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

                    #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

                     

                    lavendergrey


                      I agree that a "newbie" likely has a challenge determining what "easy" means.  Everything is hard and everything hurts.  Last year, I worked with my father in law (65 year old), and somehow guided him to be able to go from nothing to a 10k run (without walk breaks).  We started with "walk 1 minute, run 1 minute, repeat" and progressed to a point where he was running 5 minutes, walking 1 minute, and finally running straight through.  The decision to "graduate" to the longer run portion was based on heart rate information that he gathered through his Garmin.

                       

                      I would recommend having a heart rate monitor as a reminder of what a good easy run would be. 

                       

                      Last week, I saw a post by Ann-V that had a strategy to go from walk / run to fully running within a few weeks time.

                      The post had "0" and "+" strung together where the "0" represented either walking or running, and the "+" represented the other....

                      I forget who posted it or where it was, but that may be a good way to figure out how to do a complete 5k without walk breaks.

                       

                      MTA: found it: http://www.runningahead.com/forums/topic/555bc0bc533c49319d41272f5f669438

                       

                      This is good info.  I just want to reiterate that when I began running last June, I did the Couch to 5K program, which is how I was even able to run at all.  By the end of that program, I was running straight through for 4 miles in just under an hour on my treadmill.  I don't even know if I am still able to do that but I do know that running outside changed everything.  I did use a heart rate monitor a few times but returned it to the store as I did not care for it.  At that point (early January) my heart rate during running was 130.  My resting rate runs in the upper 60's.  When I had a stress test several years ago, I was unable to get my heart rate up to the level they wanted and they had to stop me after a while realizing that it wasn't going to get any higher, so I assume 130 is pretty maximum for me. Perhaps I will look for a different monitor to use...and perhaps I will need to resort to the very short intervals you spoke of, although I'm not real keen on it.  However, if it will help me build stamina and endurance, it will be worth it.

                        BTW, congrats on your C25K accomplishment!  Smile That's a big deal, and staying fit is well worth the effort.

                         

                        The question is why you're not enjoying it as much any more. Was the goal of the 5K what kept you motivated?  Do you need to set a new goal?  Is your current goal too ambitious?  If you were to go back to the treadmill, would it be physically easier for you?  Would a running buddy or group make it more fun and boost your motivation?  Is there some physical/medical issue that has crept in since your original success?  <- Important

                        Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject.

                          Have you tried to get a partner or friend to run/walk with?? Most dedicated runners are more than happy to help someone get started on the right track. A little encouragement can go a long ways. Look in your area for a local running club and find someone who is willing to help you out. I know someone will be more than happy to have you for a running partner!!!  Best of luck to ya!!! Keep it up and don't give up!!

                            A couple of quick thoughts:
                            - how are you measuring your distances outside? Are you sure your measurements are accurate? Lots of times people estimate, and that can lead to big errors.

                            - how fast are you walking? It's conceivable that your power walking now could be faster than your old treadmill running, and your running now could also be faster than when you were running on the TM.

                            - are there allergens upside that you did not have to deal with on the TM?


                            Feeling the growl again

                               At that point (early January) my heart rate during running was 130.  My resting rate runs in the upper 60's.  When I had a stress test several years ago, I was unable to get my heart rate up to the level they wanted and they had to stop me after a while realizing that it wasn't going to get any higher, so I assume 130 is pretty maximum for me. 

                               

                              1)  Have you spoken with your doc about the meaning of the lower-than-expected max HR?  Just wondering what it was they got you up to, and if they said what that may mean for exercise/concerns.

                               

                              2)  If 130 does turn out to be "pretty much max" for you, you need to run easier.  Perhaps the treadmill was easier for you because you were locked into a specific pace and now you tend to push it without the preset pace to regulate you?  

                               

                              Slow down, then slow down some more, if you need to in order to cover the distance.  If running that way is slower than you could walk it, so be it, that's not the point.  Stick with it and you will improve.  Good luck.

                               

                              3)  I suggest you start keeping your log here, when you ask questions like this it makes it easier for people to really see your training and help you.  A lot of us ASSUME you are running to hard, but if we had your log we could tell you for sure.

                              "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                               

                                It sounds like you've seen you doctor at least during the past couple of years, but I agree that you might want to go back for a checkup. Rule out basic stuff like anemia before you beat yourself up about lacking inner strength or backsliding on your progress.

                                 

                                And congratulations on everything you've accomplished so far. Picture where you'd be if you were still a sedentary smoker, and I bet you're pretty happy with where you are today, even with the bumps in the road.

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