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Friday, October 21, 2011

Peeling The Couch Potato


Sometimes it's hard to keep in shape, especially as you get older. Working 40+ hours per week I often feel like I don't get enough time with my wife and children.  I also work long days, around 9am to 7pm.  This kind of schedule makes it hard for me to find time to work out, even though I know its in the best interests of my health.  The last time I went to the gym regularly was shortly after graduating vet school, and that pretty much stopped once I got married.  In the intervening years I've ended up in the typical middle-age situation where I'm not in great shape and am carrying about 10-15 more pounds than I'd like.  Part of my problem is that I like cookies and pastries too much and have little willpower when it comes to these foods.  We eat pretty healthy overall, but I indulge in high-carb and high-calorie foods a bit too much.  I'm also rather lazy and honestly hate the amount of work it takes to get in good physical condition.

My wife recently found a "Couch to 5k" program. The idea is that over 9 weeks you gradually go from a couch potato (me) to being able to run five kilometers.  Though I really don't like running, the idea of getting into shape is a good motivator, especially if my wife and I do it together.

However, I have to admit that I have a slightly different motivation.  Regular readers of this blog should have learned early on that I'm a big geek.  A friend of mine posted a link on Facebook to a "zombie run" and the idea intrigued me.  This is a pretty unusual 5k run, as it involved an obstacle course and being chased by people dressed as zombies.  The runners have "life" flags, sort of like in flag football, and must run the 5 kilometers through a park. There are some obstacles along the way that you have to overcome.  And then of course the zombies chasing you, trying to get your flags.  The goal is to make it to the end of the course with some of your life still intact.  It's a race not just against other runners, but also a race for survival against zombies.  To a geek like me this is very intriguing.  Check it out yourself...appropriately enough it's called "Run for your lives."

We started the training this week and I was surprised that I did well on the first section.  We'll see how well I do next week when we increase the intensity.  And the nice thing about doing this is that not only will I be improving my health and spending time with my wife, but I'll be better prepared to survive the inevitable zombie apocalypse!

2 comments:

  1. I did the Couch to 5k program this past summer and it worked wonderfully for me. You do have to stick with it, though. When I started, I could hardly run a minute without feeling like passing out... 2 and a half months later I could run 30 minutes without stopping, another month after that, I ran my first 5k in 28 minutes, averaging a 9 minute mile. I am now training for a 10k.

    Running is quite addicting for me now, it has as many mental benefits as it does physical. I find it helps me sleep better at night and focus on whatever I'm studying the next day.

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  2. The Zombie run sounds so fun! I love it - and if that is what motivates you - go for it! I bet few other runners will have as much fun as those running from the zombies!

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