Supplements and inside vs outside running….

Supplements. Ah, that dreaded word. You either love them or hate them. You live by them or can’t be arsed. You’re addicted to them or have no wish to try them.  No matter what side of the fence you sit on, we all have a perception of them and where they live within our own moral exercise ground.
I have always been of the ‘no way in hell’ camp. Until my husband bought a weight loss powder for me (and him) and some kind of muscle builder one for him.
I have to admit I’ve become kind of addicted to the weight loss one, not for the weight loss reason, but because it tastes so damn good.
I will also admit, that is the only thing I take to help with my weight loss/fitness journey. Protein shakes, muscle builders and the like are not on my radar. My work keeps my arms reasonably toned, as does my running. And the rest is all about fitness now I’m at my goal weight.
Hubby is using the muscle builder one to help him out while he gets started in the gym, loses weight (he is doing so well, having changed so many things recently, it is really noticeable!). He will stop once he gets to a point where he feels comfortable with using the gym only.
And that is the sort of control we all need. Being able to use a product for only as long as it serves its purpose, until we can stand on our own two feet and manage things ourselves (Like anything I spose).And that’s all I want to say on that subject. Mainly because supplements are not in our everyday radar and we don’t want them to be. I always said if I can’t lose weight the old-fashioned way of hard work and dedication then there is no hope for me. In this case there is a glimmer of hope for me as I did 90% of it on my own, the rest was starting a 70hr/week job with little time to snack and nibble.
Each to their own I say. I don’t judge.

Now this next one I have slightly more to talk about.
Inside vs outside training, running, sport.

Back in high school I was a runner. And although my distance was no longer than the ubiquitous 1500m, I loved it. That and cross-country.
Fast forward many years and I decide on a whim to enter the Mother’s Day classic and run 8km.  After having done no exercise at all for years.
So I hit the gym and work on a few things, lots of treadmill running and very little road running. My goal was to do it in less than an hour.
First up, I did that. Secondly, I was badly prepared and it showed. In the first 500 metres. I was stuffed just going around the athletics field and up the short sharp hill to get onto the road. Omg, I wondered then and there what I had gotten myself into to. I settled into my own rhythm soon enough, having to deal with the fact mothers and prams were overtaking me.
Treadmill running is fine so long as you don’t just stay on the one speed and incline. You still have to challenge yourself and that’s what I didn’t do. Running on the bitumen is quite different, and a whole lot harder than the treadmill.
A few years later I start running again, more seriously, and outside. There is something so fulfilling about getting out in the fresh air (where you can outside of the city) and just running. Natural hills and dips work you in a way a treadmill just doesn’t know how. Sure the speed is good, and you can make a steady go at it, but being outside means more challenges to keep up the pace, push to actually run up the hill and not walk.  One thing I have learnt is that “you don’t learn to run up a hill by walking it” And it’s true. If you don’t challenge yourself then nothing will change. And I try this every time I go out now. Even if it’s a barely moving shuffle type of run I am not walking and I do not stop.  This is not an option on the treadmill, it is way easier to press the buttons.  Running outside give you the inspiration to want to run, to want to keep going, the make the most of the journey, and knowing the destination.
Right now I am just doing treadmill work (20-30 mins worth, not even full 5kms) and hanging out for daylight savings when I can get outside again. Really push myself, going further along the road, heading north, heading south. Anywhere, just running. Being out in the air.
My goal this and next year is to compete in a 10k, half and marathon.  The first step to doing that is looking for them, and then biting the bullet and registering. This at least makes me accountable to setting a goal and achieving it.

At the end of the day, which ever method you use for running is your decision. It depend on what you want to achieve with your exercise. If it’s simply for weight loss and basic exercise, then the treadmill is fine, no different really to walking along the road. If it’s competition and bigger goals then road running for sure (or trails if that’s what you like) and mixing up the treadmill for other types of training. I know I’m happy with both, my preference is the outside life.

Keep running, stay crazy and have fun!



Thoughts and considerations...

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