I'm now paying to get my ass kicked.
After nine months of working out on my own, I reached the plateau that I knew I'd reach. I was walking a few miles a day, running 3-5 miles a couple days a week, and doing the occasional stretching exercises in the morning. I've been slowly improving my run times -- my best mile is 8'42" on the indoor track, my best 3 miles is 30 minutes with an average 9'57 pace.
The summer did not go as I imagined. Back in the spring, when I was coaching baseball, I had these visions of three mile walks every morning, running every other day, and starting to add on to my fitness regime.
It didn't work out that way.
I'm five months into my exercise regime and it's going great. Yep, this is an exercise update in which I don't lament my inability to maintain my exercise program. Instead, I'll celebrate the fact that the program begun in the depths of winter has continued into the spring.
2015 was a great exercise year for me. Through a combination of running, walking, the occasional game of disc golf, and coaching baseball for a bunch of 8 and 9 year old boys, I lost 15 pounds and hit my summer goal of 210 pounds.
I had a great routine -- get up in the morning, go for a run with the dog, then go to work. Get in another walk or a brief run in the evening, then go out on Saturday or Sunday mornings with the guys for some disc golf. According to my Apple Watch's exercise app, I was regularly hitting my 1,200 active calorie movement goal.
I bought an Apple Watch. It's pretty cool.
I'm not one for buying expensive new gadgets. Like most geeks, I buy my share of technology, but my upgrade cycles tend to be long, and if I do get something bright and shiny, it's because it satisfies a specific need. My original iPod, for example, let me stop renting audio books from BooksOnTape.com, replacing a $45 monthly fee and snail mailed boxes of audio tapes with one small device and an $15 Audible subscription.
I went into the fall with the informal goal of losing some weight. Over the last two years or so my weight's been bouncing around 223 lbs. I've had a few stop-and-start exercise regimes but this summer I got into a solid routine of walking/running with my dog Indiana in the mornings, and I got my weight down to 218. That's a consistent 218, which felt like a step back from the brink of 223.
I've started running. Not well. Not quickly. Not for long. But I am running ... and slowly making progress (where "progress" is defined as no longer feeling like I'm going to collapse after running for three blocks).
Running was never my thing. My sister's thing, yes, but never mine. I was more about cycling -- I was happy to go on on a meandering 20-mile ride and have fun trying to find my way back home.
I've been back on my exercise regime for about three weeks (never mind the timestamp on my blog post kicking things off; I actually started writing that two weeks ago...). I spent the first week jogging, and then spent the next week walking (in an attempt recover from the previous week of walking). This week I'm going for a mixed approach: jog one day, walk the next, and try and get a few afternoon trips to the gym in to round things out.
Seven years ago, around the time my son was born, I was badly out of shape. At 6'1", I weighted 223 lbs. The extra pounds were spread out over my frame, so I didn't look particularly fat, but it was clear that I could stand to lose 20 or so pounds.
Summer is here and that means it's time to get serious about a new routine. Oh it's not quite summer -- the calendar says that begins on June 20, and my kids are still in school -- but the college's spring semester ended a week ago and The Avengers proved that the first big summer movie is here.
The big thing is getting back to the gym. Longtime readers know this refrain: get back to the gym, get back into a routine, and keep it for as long as possible before something derails it. I've been particularly bad about getting the gym over the last year -- too much work, too little sleep, too many excuses.