Or at least, making the time go quickly while on the treadmill.
I think part of the reason running never caught my interest in the past is that I spent a lot of time on the treadmill. Not really knowing what I was doing, I would just run at the same speed for the entire time. And I NEVER increased my speed- meaning I never challenged myself.
What ultimately happened was unless I found a way to cover up the timing mechanism, I always gave up before the allotted thirty minutes- and usually WAAAAY before the time was up. As soon as I caught sight of how much time had elapsed, my attention would snap and I had to get off. I couldn’t watch TV because I would time myself based on commercial breaks. Music didn’t help either- I knew that 4 songs in was usually 12-15 minutes elapsed.
I know! I’m impossible! But clearly, I hated the treadmill.
Well, that changed last winter. Those of you in the DC area may recall that last winter was BITTERLY cold, seemingly from November through March! I certainly wasn’t going to start running outdoors at that point. I’m sure wouldn’t be writing this blog if I had. But after my initial treadmill jog, I knew that I would have to do something different if I was to consistently jog. And so I discovered intervals.
Don’t get me wrong, I MUCH prefer to run outside. But I no longer dread having to use the treadmill. In fact, sometimes I prefer it, especially for doing speedwork like intervals. I’m still learning about pacing myself, and I don’t have a proper timing watch yet. I find it easier to do intervals on the treadmill because I can’t slow down until I make the belt slower. The time flies by, and I really enjoy feeling like I challenged myself.
That’s the key to maintaining a work-out regime, I think- keep challenging yourself. At least it is for me.
Today was my first interval work-out of 2012. I’m integrating one speedwork into my schedule weekly as I train for my first half marathon in March (woohoo!). I did my fall back work-out- a ten minute warm up at 5 mph, then three one-minute intervals at 7 mph followed by one minute recoveries of 5 mph. Then I did two minutes at 7 mph, two minutes at 6 mph, two more at 7 mph, and three at 6 mph. I wrapped up the session at 7 mph before my cool down. (I think I missed a couple of sets, but I’m sure you won’t hold it against me!). I didn’t feel totally spent when I was done, which probably means that I need to go faster, but since it was my first intervals in a while and my legs were sore from a tough strength training yesterday. So I don’t want to push it too much and hurt myself at the start of my training.
But it still felt great.