FishDreamer scribbles: It ain't over yet.

Thursday, 13 May 2004

For Fitness Geeks

Everyone else just skip to the bottom part, okay? I can get tedious when I start talking running and fitness and weight.

So remember when I was talking about how I haven't lost any weight since last June, but it's okay because I now know I can maintain this weight plus my body is changing even though my weight isn't? Heh. I probably sounded full of shit, like I was trying to find the silver lining to make myself feel better. But no! I usually weigh myself in the morning, before coffee. Sometimes I'll check my weight at other times of the day, just to see how it looks and how the body fat percentage changes as I hydrate. It changes one to two percent, usually.

Tonight I decided to check it out while I was getting ready to go run. The weight was about what I expected, but the body fat percentage was not. I was down five percent from the last time I checked (which I think was Tuesday). Five percent! I haven't seen a number that low since I got the Tanita (body fat monitor scale, it was a wedding present from Sally Edwards).

So no, I wasn't trying to fool anyone, and now I have proof. I've lost about five percent of my body fat in the last six months. If my math is correct (which it may very well not be), that equals nine pounds. I've lost nine pounds of fat, and gained 9 pounds of muscle (since the actual weight hasn't changed, you see). Since a pound of muscle has a smaller volume than a pound of fat, I have clearly gotten trimmer.

See, I feel much better. I'm not done yet, but I feel better.

Because of my poor knees, I've been doing much of my running on a treadmill. This gives me lots of numerical feedback, like calories burned, exact miles run, calories burned per minute or per mile, speed, miles per hour, all kinds of fun stuff.

(Did I just prove that I am a total geek with the toys and the numbers and everything? Yeah, I thought so.)

On a treadmill, I can run six miles an hour for at least a quarter of a mile (ten minute miles). I can run three miles at 5.7 miles an hour, just fine. I'm pushing the distance I run at faster speeds every time I go, because the first time it was 5.2 miles an hour. I'm aiming to speed up and improve my endurance, because I want to do a half marathon this summer. I love running on the treadmill with all the numbers to watch. 3.5 miles at my varied pace between 5.5 and 6 miles an hour burns about 500 calories. Not bad, eh? I'm working towards 4 miles. Actually, I'm working towards 13.1 miles, but I need to find a place to run outdoors that isn't a track because treadmill running is easier than outdoor running. No, really. Not only is there the fact that the ground is moving under you, but there's no wind resistance.

I ran to my chiropracter visit yesterday, and then home after. I took the long way home, which involves some hills. (So does the trail I usually run on, although that's a gentle slope compared to what I did yesterday.) And I really, really could tell the difference. Not just the hill part, which I did my best to actually run both up and down because the Seattle Half Marathon is one hilly race and I need the practice. But also the flats. I could really tell the difference in wind resistance, which means I need to run outside regularly and only do the treadmill to save my knees and for regular gauging of improvement.

Problem is that the hills are hard on my knees too, so I need to find somewhere I can run that involves smaller hills and better trails. There's a great trail just north of town, but I hate driving to go running. It seems wrong to me, somehow. I'm thinking of going back to the Tuesday night running group I've participated in a few times. That might help. But around my neighborhood, there just doesn't seem to be anywhere. I'll have to think about it, or just deal with the hills.

I'm sure you all care extra much about this, don't you? Sorry. I'll shut up about the running now.

Tomorrow is the cocktail party for my twentieth high school reunion. I just today started getting excited about it. It's going to be different from the last two (15 and 10), with at least half the crowd made up of people I haven't had contact with in ages. Three of the people coming have never come to a reunion before, and another hasn't come since the 10th. (Please note I graduated in a class of 24, so three people is a significant percentage.) I'm hoping it will be fun, and that we can catch up and get to know each other as adults now instead of reverting to high school behaviour patterns. That's been the case most of the time, with one notable exception (and I don't think she's coming). It should be fun.

The dresses I ordered from Beqi Clothing didn't make it, so no Vespa dress this weekend. That will have to wait for some other fab occasion, which kind of bums me out a little but since I didn't actually ask Ms. Beqi if she could get it here by now, I can't complain. (And I really can't wait to get that dress, I am hoping it fits and it looks as groovy on me as I hope. Mr D notified me that spots are trendy right now, so for once in my life I will be on a trend instead of outside it. Oh well.) If they fit and are as amazing as I'm hoping, I plan to order more for the summer. I need skirts for work (it's too damned hot to wear long pants around here in the summer). I almost ordered more this time, but I figured I'd better find out how they fit me. I usually try the XL instead of the L, and Beqi doesn't sell much of anything larger than L. But hey, I've lost all that body fat so things look good for the fit.

I have some freelance work to do, and a book or five to read, so I will sign off now. Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

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