Thursday, June 16, 2011

Early Success with Couch to 5K

Truth be told I've never been much of a runner. Sure, I was on the junior high cross country team in the 7th and 8th grades, but I didn't really contribute much to the team. I don't think I ever placed high enough in a race to help out my team. In fact, the only specific thing I can recall from my cross-country days is the fact that I suffered from several stone bruises--not a happy memory.

Over the years, I have enjoyed participating in sports. I played tennis and soccer with some success in high school. I even received a small scholarship to play tennis in college. I continued playing soccer, too, even as a young professional. I could play both sports for hours even if they involved a ton of running, but I couldn't muster the motivation to jog around the block if a ball wasn't involved. For some reason, chasing a ball for 90 minutes wasn't nearly as painful as running through my neighborhood for 30 minutes seemed. I've never known why. Of course, that was 6 years and 25-30 pounds ago--before I stopped coaching, started finishing all the un-eaten Happy Meals "I paid good money for."

Tomorrow I will complete week 2 day 3 of Couch to 5K. I'm somewhat surprised that I'm actually looking forward to the workout. Maybe it's because the workouts so far have been intervals of running and walking. Maybe it's because I've already lost 3 pounds. Maybe it's because I invested in some decent running shoes. Or maybe it's because I'm tracking my success in as many geeky (and social) ways that I can find. I'm not sure. I still not much of a runner, and I have a long way to go before I run a 5K, but I'm feeling like I can actually reach my goals of running a relatively painless 5K and dropping 15 pounds of weight.

For anyone interested, I'm using a few apps on my iPhone to help me as I try to slow down the aging process and find a way to stick around to play with my grandkids. I'm using the Couch to 5K app as well as the RunKeeper app. (They seem to record different levels of calories burned.) I'm also using the Lose It! app to track my calorie consumption and help me watch how much I consume. I'm sharing my exercise success on Twitter, Facebook, & with my RunKeeper Street Team. I'd love to connect with you through one of these networks. I appreciate the encouragement I've received from #temt so far, and I look forward to encouraging others as they strive to reach their goals.

The technophile in me is curious about what tools the members of my team are using to track their exercise regimens. How about you? What apps, widgets, or programs do you use to track your health and fitness?


  1. Thanks so much for sharing all that you are doing to achieve your goals! I am also so happy to see others contributing to the this blog, because sharing our stories is very powerful.
    As you know, I am also using RunKeeper and so far, I like it. In the past I have used SparkPeople and Fitday to track exercise and calories. Right now I seem to be doing fine not writing down all of my intake, but we will see how the progress goes. In summer I am always much better at being healthy than when school is in.
    Keep sharing and thanks for being a member of #temt!

  2. Good for you Philip. I'm sure you'll get to 5K soon and after that, who knows? Just make sure you try to find the joy in running. Maybe next year, I'll run the Nashville marathon and make you do it with me. :)
    I used RunKeeper, but I got tired of running with my phone. I really like the Nike+ Sportswatch; it's a GPS watch that uploads the workouts. Then, I import everything to DailyMile, a social network for running. I've met quite a few good people there if you can't handle yet another network with 4 kids. - if you join, I'm jasontbedell just like on every other site.
    Nike watch:,pdp,ctr-inline/cid-1/pid-406329/pgid-406329&CAWELAID=840121761

  3. Thanks for the comments and the recommendations. I'll be sure to check out the apps and the sites. As for the Nashville Marathon, Jason, let's see how the 5K goes. The marathon is in the margins on my bucket list, but who knows? If the 5K goes well, I might bridge to a further distance.