Tag Archives: exercise

Green Exercise

I’m all about being green. In general. Recycling, upcycling, air miles, composting, you get the drift. But I’m also all about Green exercise. Getting outdoors, into the non recycled air.  And for me, that’s one of the benefits!

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In general you are pretty limited in the gym. Sure you can adjust the incline, but nothing beats the undulating terrain of the outdoors. Working out outside promotes “muscle confusion,” which can help your body burn more calories.  Very cool. And it’s totally cool to be green.

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I love a good fartlek….

As you know I have a serious love/ hate relationship with running.  I love it when I’m finished, but hate that I can never seem to run as fast or as far as everyone else.  I tend to be prone also to injury, so feel sometimes that I am starting from scratch all over again, everytime.  So after much trying of different types of running training, I now combine a number of methods that seem to keep me in the game, injury free, and motivate me. Fartlek being the main one.

Running

Fartlek (meaning speed play) is the first.  Similar to interval training, it was designed in Sweden by Gösta Holmér in 1937, he was the coach of a cross country running team who were not doing particularly well.  Sessions should be performed at an intensity that causes the athlete to work at 60% to 80% of his or her maximum heart rate. This means (hopefully) that the body will not experience too much discomfort while exercising. An athlete should also include a good warm up at the beginning of the session, and a cool down at the end of the session, to improve performance, minimize post-workout muscle soreness, and most importantly for me; to decrease the chances of injury.. So hence it’s the model of choice for me.  The “Fartlek” intervals can vary in length, and speed.  When I’m starting off I’ll do a walk/jog interval, then if I’m feeling “in the groove” I’ll do slow run, fast run intervals.  My ultimate aim is to decrease the number of walk/runs. Fartleks are a great option for people that run for their health because the fat burning portion makes it a very efficient exercise.

Waterford Greenway

The Greenway is fab in both good and bad weather

But still running by yourself can be quite lonely.  I use to run with music, but after a particularly long injury break I started back running and simply forgot to put the music on.  It is also safer for when I’m running on the road. I really envy the people who can run with other people.  I just can’t.  Firstly I’d be embarrassed as I run SO SLOWLY.  And then I’d struggle to chat- and for anyone who knows me- seems impossible.  So I just run and retreat inside my head. And it’s free. With money tight -a gym, or fitness classes are completely out of the question, so I strap on the runners and use some of the roads and tracks around my area.  The Waterford Greenway is an amazing running/ walking/ cycling “way” that runs from Waterford to Dungarvan along the old route of the railway.  it’s 46kms of safe running and we are lucky to have access to quite a few entry points.  If that doesn’t get you out running or walking nothing will!

Running
I do have a machine companion however, I’m one of those annoying people who share their exercise on social media.  The main reason is for support, even if noone “likes” it, I still hope that there is support out there for my lonely feet slapping runs 3-4 times a week in my endless journey to increase my fitness and decrease my weight.  Although over the last few years those priorities have changed in emphasis.  My health, both mental and physical are more important to me now than ever.  Too many friends have gone, too many people take their lives for granted.  I’m determined not to be one of those.  And sure I like the scenery.

Excuses

January is supposed to be THE month for getting fitness/ healthy eating/ new you on track.  I think I just need to do nothing- or maybe just  a short holiday…

Christmas is a mental time of year in the day job, and this year has been to a whole-new-level-of-hell worse than usual.  So by the time Christmas day comes I just want to hibernate for a month.  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Christmas, the lights, the food, the family get togethers.  I promised myself in December, that as soon as Christmas day came and went I would get out walking- and eventually running again.  I’ve joined groups on facebook to help motivate myself.  But it just isn’t working.

Excuses

And I’m not sitting at home every evening watching TV.  Or eating takeaways every day of the week.  But I just can’t get back into it. I actually do not have one single spare minute.  I look around at 11 o’clock each night and go- right what’s next??

On a positive note I have started back riding again.  Missy is back after her operation, and we are both “enjoying” the exercise every day.  So I suppose that’s something

 

Missy and I in the arena

So where to now? I’ve lots of orienteering competitions coming up. And will need to be fit for both running physically and running mentally.  And I’ve vowed this year to step it up with my horse- no injury excuses. We’ve started off really well, but if I can’t last for longer than 30 mins in the saddle it’s not much use. So, where too from here? I really want to look as happy as I am in this picture-

The after run glow!

It’s going to be hard.  But nothing worth doing isn’t hard.  My father in law will be in New Zealand for the next 3 weeks.  My plan is to walk all the dogs each morning as a start.  Food diary is underway.  To be honest, my diet is good, too good- too much.  So portion sizes need to be tackled. And I soooooo love to eat and cook.  *sighs*

So a little help and advice would be appreciated.  And I’ll let you know how I get on…

 

PS I did my first parkrun in Tramore on Saturday and was ABSOLUTELY thrilled to run the whole 5km.  Slower than some people walked it- but I did it!!!!!!