Chapter 3: Exercise

What I did:

I started going to a trainer. Yes, I know not everyone has the time to go to a trainer, and we started pretty slow and easy. I also had a workout partner (very important) to workout with and to help keep me accountable. A partner helps you go workout on the days that you would have happily skipped. My workout partner Greg would always show up and did a great job of making me feel accountable to be there. We would go to the trainer Tuesday and Thursday mornings for 30 minutes. On Monday, Wednesday and Friday we would go to the gym and get on the elliptical machine for 30 minutes. I prefer the elliptical that you can adjust vertically over the one that keeps you locked into one height. Like me, you may have to build up your time on the elliptical depending on your health. We would go on Saturday mornings and do the workout circuit (weight machines that are easy to use). Basically we would start the day off right by burning calories. I had a goal and I knew that to achieve my goal I would have to work hard. Once I had lost some weight by dieting, we were able to increase to workouts and I started seeing some results.

Just about everyone at every age and at any health level can exercise. The type of exercise may differ. Exercise may mean running to one person and walking just a few more steps than the day before for another.

At the beginning:

Elliptical machine 3 times per week for 5 -15 minutes depending on your ability. Enter your weight and age to get more accurate results. Use the machines heart rate monitor to get your heart rate in your target zone. I would stay on the elliptical machine until it showed that I had burned 400 calories.

-increasing by 1-5 minutes weekly

-also increasing the resistance and alternating the height weekly

After some weight loss:

Elliptical – 30 minutes going at a rate to burn 400 calories.

Machine circuit – increasing weights weekly stretching and abdominal workout

Trainer 3 times per week for 30 minutes

Monday – upper body

Wednesday – lower body

Friday – full body after a lot of weight loss:

Elliptical – 35 minutes going at a rate to burn 500 calories at a high height and resistance

Trainer 3 times per week for 30 minutes

Monday – upper body

Wednesday – lower body

Friday – full body

Stretching and abdominal workout

I would walk or jog periodically during my get healthy journey. Once I had lost enough weight, I started running.

After I was close to my goal weight:

Trainer 3 times per week for 30 minutes

Monday – upper body

Wednesday – lower body

Friday – full body

Running:

I started at the track. I would walk a few laps first. I would start jogging the straightaways and walking the curves. After a few weeks I decided I would start jogging and see how long I could go. Surprising myself I was able to run a few miles without stopping. I credit my elliptical training. I had never ran more than a 5K (3.1 miles) but after a few weeks of running on the track I had worked up to running 3 miles every time. One of my coworkers was registered to run the Tulsa Run which is a 15K. On 09/04/17 I decided to see how far I could actually jog. I ended up going the full 15K (9.32 miles). It took me 2:10:01. After that I registered myself for the Tulsa Run. I then started training with 2 short runs (3-5 miles) per week and one long run on the weekend. The following week I ran 15K again and my time was 1:56:02 which was an improvement. The Tulsa Run was my first experience competing in a long run. My official time was 1:43:07 (11:03/mile) ranking me 18th in my division. Surprisingly, it was a lot of fun. There are so many spectators cheering you on. There are bands playing on corners and people giving you high-fives and holding signs. I enjoyed the race so much that I registered for my first half-marathon that was in 3 weeks. A half-marathon is 13.1 miles and I had a goal time of 2:30. I trained for the Williams Route 66 half-marathon in the same way but increasing the distance of my runs. In between the Tulsa Run and the half-marathon I did compete in the Muskogee Veterans 5K and ended up with a personal record time of 29:15. My time resulted in a FIRST PLACE medal for my age division. I finished the half-marathon with a time of 2:30:32 (11:09/mile) not quite achieving my goal but darn close. I placed 28th in my division. I have registered for the Oklahoma City Memorial FULL-MARATHON in April. Honestly I am really nervous about my decision. 26.2 miles is a long distance but I want this to be a motivating factor for me to stick with my healthy lifestyle.

This is what I did and what I am still doing. If you have any questions please let me know.

Thanks for reading