Step Challenge and the positivity of walking: Week 3

This is week three of my Monday blog series on a walking challenge I participated in. Here are my first and second posts throughout the challenge thus far. Shall we?

Last week I competed in an ultramarathon and gained a bucket load of steps, where did that get me in the weekly leaderboard? Let’s find out.

I kept things steady with my steps, kept ticking off my targets and not over exerting myself on my runs. There was another race coming up at the weekend and I was petrified of getting hurt from over training (something my hamstrings like to pull me up on… Get it? Sorry). I felt good and was confident of breaking into that top 3 for the first time. I check the leaderboard… FIRST!

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I am surprised that I got there and even more so by how much I got there by, I beat everyone else by a whopping 15,000 steps. The pride oozes out of me and the cockiness comes out as I inform my office at my accomplishment. Saying such things as I knew this was easy. Foolish Scott, Foolish!

The weekend comes and it is race day, I am always excited for races with the EAMS crew, they put on a great race and with even better support and on the race days that I cannot run, I do plan on volunteering with them as you have to give a bit back and they have earned the help that they conjure up every race.

 

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Ready as we will ever be…

 

This race is a 3 lap course of 10.3 miles going up the Knockagh Monument, which is a lovely hill, but with an even better climb down. I have mentioned this before, but I have personal bests on this course, so I felt good. The weather was kind as well, cloudy with little bouts of dryness, the rain had just been and gone and I was hoping for a good time. Potentially another 70,000 steps were on the horizon, perhaps even more because of the hills as I take smaller steps when climbing up to keep my pace going (I have mentioned my running training methods here have a look) so I hoped that I would get to 80,000.

The race starts and after mile two I start the climb, small steps keeping me moving at a good pace, but not one to tire me out too early. I see people go past faster, then slow, I just keep it steady. As I go downhill I know my stride will lengthen as I try to make up some time from the uphill, I try not to go down too fast as that is how injuries happen. I have seen it too many times during marathons.

I repeat this just twice as I feel some pain in my knee as maybe running two long races within a week is a bad idea! So to make sure I don’t lose my steps I decide to walk home and with it being around 6 miles home. I knew I could get a good 12,000 or so steps out of the way. I finish that day on 90,000, but my knee is quite sore so I am going to have to take a hit on the next day to make sure my running is not affected short term from the little tweak.

 

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Having a little walk home.

 

This then made me think if you are doing a walking challenge, is it okay to run? I know I spoke about cycling as a form of people getting their steps, but what about running? If you are just meant to be walking around to get your steps, is running cheating? Especially for someone who is an amateur runner and would run every day? Or is this a case of getting your steps in, any way necessary?

I am now tending to think of the latter approach, which made me ease up on people who will cycle. It is not their fault that they cycle, their legs are still moving in a step motion and more importantly, they are exercising. The challenge was to get everyone to who signed up to exercise more. So if people are exercising and being active, isn’t that the main thing?

So it has been 2 and a half to 3 weeks of this challenge and I thought I would chat about a few things that I have noticed from it thus far.

I am more motivated – Not just with walking either, I love to exercise and when I get the chance to do it. I lap it up, to just have an excuse to go and exercise is great to me. I am someone who strives off motivation, if I am motivated then I will do a lot, I will be more productive, happier. I am not sure if that is a common thing for everyone (let me know if it is!)

I need to have walking shoes – I am a runner, so I have great comfortable shoes. But I have found that I am wearing my running shoes down quicker the more I am walking, so I have come to the realisation that I need to purchase a different pair of shoes, that will just accommodate my walking. Then I can have walking, running and gym shoes. I never would have thought I would have so many different types of shoes!

Getting annoyed at being stationary – This is more a problem at work, it is quite a stationary job, so whenever I get the chance to get up and walk about (especially during office hours) I am out the door doing errands etc. I have always hated sitting down and actually feel that I would greatly benefit from having a standing desk as then I wouldn’t feel like my legs are trapped into the same position. But that would be costly and I would probably have to bring that in myself. So I think I might have to get one for when I am home so then I have no excuses to sit at a table when I blog or design, I can stand. So expect a blog in a few months about my new fancy table!

I think that will do it for today, get ready for the final week and the results of the challenge! Plus a little bit more of what I have felt about walking more these past few weeks!

Until then!

 

2 thoughts on “Step Challenge and the positivity of walking: Week 3

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  1. Pingback: Scott H Gilliland

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