Ever since I joined the Great Eastern Women’s Run ‘Run To Live Great’ Programme as their influencer, I’ve been trying to convince myself that running can be fun, and most importantly, that I can run.
Anyone who knows me knows I never run and how much I dislike it. When I was 16, I walked the entire Cross Country route of my school’s annual Cross Country event at MacRitchie Reservoir as a sign of protest of how much I hated to be made to run every single year. I’m not going to the army, I’m not going to pursue anything athletic, why, oh why do you torture me like this, was what I always asked my PE teacher.
Now at 33, I suffer from constant fatigue and high cholesterol. If only I had made the decision to exercise regularly at an earlier age. Why, oh why, did I not have that maturity to understand that whatever I sow, I also reap.
Someone once told me, “If you want energy, sow it.”
Yesterday, I took time out to sow MORE energy into my life. I’ve already started to take small steps by jogging at least once a week for 15 to 20 minutes to get my heart rate up in preparation for the 5km I have to run in November, but yesterday was a major leap forward for the training.
At the Training Run organised by the GEWR’s ‘Run To Live Great’ Programme yesterday morning, I went through a session of understanding the different heart rate zones and experiencing what the various intensity levels of exercise feel like.
So I learned that exercise can be divided into three intensity zones: light, moderate and hard. Each of these intensity levels corresponds to various fitness improving mechanisms in our body.
When we alternate between intensity zones, we improve our fitness in the long run.
Greek to you? Actually, me too. But because I was put through the practical, I understood what all these zoning zones mean exactly.
Because this was what I did:
* Light intensity zone = slow run for 300 metres, then warm up with some stretches. Continue to jog at a comfortable pace for 1km
* Moderate intensity zone = Jumping Jacks, High Knee, Run-Like-Mad-On-the-Spot + run a little faster than the light intensity jog for 1.5km
* Hard intensity zone = 2 x 500m walk lunges, 1 x 500m walk-and-twist lunge, 3 x 500m shuttle run + 400m sprint + 2.5km jog
* And then warm down with stretches using a weight from something we can easily find, like a 2-litre water bottle
Yep, these were all I did to understand exercise zones. Yes, the walk-to-protest-at-Cross-Country-unfit-me.
Which all equals to nothing but a super ZONED-OUT me.
It’s now officially agonising to walk and climb the stairs and carry my littlest because every single muscle on my calves and thighs and butt and feet are aching like crazy, that plus every other muscle I never knew existed.
But it has been fun training with a bunch of enthusiastic and lively women I ran and perspired buckets with yesterday morning, and I am beginning to think that running can be fun, if and only when it’s done with a group of people who has such a zest for life, like the ladies I met yesterday.
I have been inspired much yesterday. Inspired to live great, not because I am forced to, but because I get to. What a privilege!
If you’re unfit like me but want to start a quest towards getting your fitness level up, you could try doing the workouts that I shared at the light intensity zone and the moderate intensity zone. You can also follow some of the moms here on the Fit and Fab Blog Train to get some exercise tips, motivation and advice.
Next on the Blog Train is Jenn, who was an athlete in her schooling days. Ever since her only son was born, she could hardly find time to exercise. Her energy level declined and her health condition deteriorated fast, especially in these last two years. She decided that she should work on her health, so when Alicia from beanienus.blogspot.sg invited mom bloggers to join the Fit and Fab Blog Train, she was more than happy to participate and share with her readers her struggles.
Follow her blog to find out the steps she has taken to regain her fitness once again.
Read also: how my quest to getting fit began here.