So read the glass that I drank my morning milk out of every day for ten years. My dad ran the Boston Marathon a bunch of times, and we had a set of drinking glasses with the Boston course wrapped around them in a spiral from top to bottom. There were lots of mile-marker tips on those glasses; things that I assume every skinny, slit-shorted runner in the seventies knew about the course:
- Mile negative two: still shuffling to the starting line! Bill Rogers is probably done already.
- Mile zero: I say, that fellow came all the way from Kenya to run this race, huh? Well, wonders never… hey, where’d he go?
- Mile ten: That guy in the gorilla suit and tutu can’t keep this pace up the whole way. Can he?
- Mile fifteen: That can of Dr. Pepper that you stashed in the bushes is probably around here somewhere. That caffeine and sugar will pep up your pace!*
- Hearbreak Hill: Ha! Ha! Ha! Your Christian “god” cannot help you now.
- Mile eighteen: time to change the band-aids on your nipples, brother. Those mesh tanks chafe!
- Mile twenty-four: Ignore the beckoning figure in the black robe. He has no E.R.G. for you.
Writing about running and weight loss brings a lot of encouragement and advice from folks, which I love and welcome — thanks for your email, Bob and Genevieve and mom! It’s all good advice, too — so far, nobody’s told me to try magnets in my insoles, or to try drinking three liters of pom juice a day, or anything. Cyborg triathelete Will Ronco, in particular, gives me encouraging news about weight loss:
[Will writes about how it’s too soon for increased muscle mass to be offsetting the weight of fat loss, and continues…]
“What’s happening, as you begin running again, and stressing your
muscles and your cardiovascular system, is that your body is retaining
water. Once your body gets used to all the running, you’ll stop
retaining water. In the meantime you’ll be losing fat, but fat loss
occurs so gradually that the only part you’ll really notice is when
the water weight drops off, around week 4 of consistent training. It
kind of feels like you make this huge weight/size loss all at once but
it’s actually been going on for a while.”
Okay, I’m happy to believe that. Of course, what is a workout for me is a “whoops, let me go back and get my car keys” for Will, so I’ll adjust that four-week figure in my head. Here’s what I’m doing right now:
Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday mornings:
Jog 10+n minutes on the treadmill at a 10-minute pace, where n increases by one every workout. Then walk five minutes at a fifteen-minute pace, then walk five-minutes at an eighteen-minute pace. Stretch some.
Jog thirty minutes at whatever pace I damn well feel like (slow; probably a fourteen-minute pace, but I don’t keep track.) Stretch some.
Yep, that’s my routine that I’ve been maintaining for all of nine workouts now. Woo! Once I’m running 30 minutes at a 10-minute pace consistently three times a week (around the middle of October), I’ll start mixing it up. Also, I’ll return to the Oakbourne Park cross-country course as much as possible. Maybe I’ll be ready for Dolphin shorts by April!
* This is a true story. My dad stashed a can of Dr. Pepper in the bushes the night before, and then pounded it during the Boston marathon. I think he barfed. And then kept running.