Sep
16
2011

  Straight to 2.5 Miles

I didn't even mean to walk 2.5 miles today, but my mind was wandering while I walked and before I realized it, I had already passed the 2.0 mile turnaround point. I figured since I wasn't the least bit tired by the time I realized this, I might as well walk on to the 2.5 mile turnaround point.

I briefly considered just blowing on by and going to the 3.0 mile point, but here's the problem with walking in one long loop-- if you overshoot your capabilities, you still have to manage to get home somehow. So I turned around at 2.5 miles (well, the turnaround point, which is 1.25 miles from home) since by that time I was getting slightly fatigued.

I did 2.5 miles in just under one hour, so I figure that's a decent pace given the fact that I just finished my first week of this weight-bearing regimen. In general I figure a 3.0 mph pace is a good target. If I don't lose weight at that pace I'll try to pick it up, but until my ankles get stronger I really don't want to risk twisting one in the gravel by trying to walk too fast.

I think it helped a great deal that it was pleasantly cool this morning, probably around 55F. W wore a jacket with a hood and I had M all bundled up in the stroller. I was in shorts and a T-shirt, but I did put on earmuffs when I finished the first 1/2 mile (my ears are very sensitive to cold while the rest of me is not so much).

I did my stretches immediately after the walk, as usual. With the post-walk stretching I've already noticed that I'm becoming more flexible pretty quickly. And now it's four hours after I left for the walk, and I'm not even stiff or sore at all. I find this bizarre. It seems that the further I walk, the BETTER I feel rather than worse. I really had no expectation that my body would adjust to this so quickly.

And while the pounds aren't exactly melting off in dramatic fashion, I'm still losing about 1 pound per week on the good weeks. On the bad weeks at least I'm holding steady and not gaining. I just read that a loss of 1% of your weight per week is a healthy goal, and the rate at which your body can easily adjust to the new lower weight. Which means I should in theory be able to lose 2 lbs per week. Which would be awesome, but I wonder how much I'd have to change my diet to make that happen. I admit I am a little hungrier since I've started the heavier workout. But I'm trying to eat more vegetables and fruits and stuff instead of heavier food. Some days I do better than others.

If the weather cooperates tomorrow, I guess I'll try for three miles. Maybe my goal of working up to 4 miles is too short. Maybe I should be aiming for five or more? I have a friend who does a 5-mile walk around her neighborhood. It's paved and so I wouldn't have to push the stroller over gravel, so the extra mile probably wouldn't tax me too much. After I master 4 miles (which at this rate I suspect will be sometime next week) I might give her a call and go for five.