I was kind of worrying that since we had no particular plans for the holiday weekend that it would seem a little bit . . . oh, tedious, I guess. Three long days of kid-wrangling, with no relaxation to be found, stuck at home while everyone else cavorts around on their ski boats and stuff, wah wah. You know, because why just assume the glass is half empty, when you can also fret about whether or not it also contains a drowned spider?

Instead, it was a perfect sort of family weekend: lots of playing and working in the yard, a few local outings, and two mornings of slutting the bed until — O, I can barely type it with my still-trembling-with-pleasure fingers — 9 AM.

2526034730_2d88d203bc.jpg

2525213935_ace3b10da4.jpg

2525213601_f912b50ede.jpg

2525213179_96f257a450.jpg

2526034194_0e904a5153.jpg

2525809635_b32f438262.jpg

2525212963_bff022284a.jpg

I hope you had a good weekend too.

PS: For those of you who know a thing or two about running, I could use some advice. I’ve started jogging around our neighborhood again, spending about 45 minutes at a time. Right now I’m doing about a 50/50 mix of running/walking, but I try and work in some short sprints, and runs up steep hills. Which then KILLS ME DEAD, so I walk longer afterwards. So! In order to improve my fitness level, would you recommend trying to run longer intervals, even if I have to jog really really slow to avoid total lung collapse — or is it better to keep trying to run harder, for shorter intervals (which hopefully become longer intervals)?

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
84 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Junni
Junni
14 years ago

Um, no idea about the running thing. I do fast-walking because running hurts my boobs. No, really.

But I had to comment because the picture of cat is just so lovely (with a little evil hidden in there).

Kate
Kate
14 years ago

I’m sure the more seasoned runners will weigh in, but I would definitely say stick with the intervals as you are. There’s not a whole lot of difference between a slow jog and a walk, and the pushing yourself bits get your heart rate way up, which is good for losing weight and getting in shape.

Emily
14 years ago

It’s better to do a slowish, steady pace, if you’re doing it for fat-burning. There’s a biological/scientific/whatever reason for that, but I can’t remember what it is. It just works.

Also! Dude! I am out of the army now! Woooo!

Erin
14 years ago

TOTALLY depends what you want to accomplish. There are so many various schools of thought on it. I would switch it up. A couple of your runs should be slow and steady. Another couple of your runs should be intervals – the whole jog/run/sprint action – done at your particular skill level.

For your slower, steadier runs, make sure you’re going a long distance. Have you checked out GMaps Pedometer? I love it. Super awesome for figuring out distances.

Jo
Jo
14 years ago

I’ve got nothing to add on the running thing but love the pics – yay Cat!!

Valria
14 years ago

Google Couch to 5K.
Cool Running has a great program to get beginners into running.

or here’s the link
http://www.coolrunning.com/engine/2/2_3/181.shtml

Erin
14 years ago

I agree with Valria. I started running using the Couch to 5k program, and it really works out well. There are also some podcasts that you can get from iTunes or from this website: http://www.ullreys.com/robert/Podcasts/page6/page6.html Towards the end of C25K I started using the podcasts and they were very helpful. Then, once you’ve finished that, sign up to run a 5k, you’ll have a lot of fun. It’s also nice to have something to work towards. Good luck!

anna
anna
14 years ago

I run.
Better to do longish, steady runs than harder,up-hill, shorter run-walks.
Best to try and jog the whole time too at a slowish pace rather than switch between walking and faster jogging.

Also, more than trying to do longer times ie. 45mins 4x p/week, for weight loss it is better to do shorter and more frequent runs – ie. 35mins 5-6 times p/wk.

And can i just say Dylan aka Mini JB

jonniker
14 years ago

Aim for time (as in length out there doing it), never speed. At least not until much, much later, like if you’re training for a road race and care about that kind of thing. This is assuming general fitness is your goal. You can totally worry about speed later. Keeping your heart rate up for longer will give you better results than just pushing for little sprints.

And really, not to beat a dead horse, but the Couch-to-5K saved my running career, back when I was first starting. It’s fantastic to get going, and yes, it alternates between jogging and walking, but the goal is to get you jogging a full three miles.

jonniker
14 years ago

Also, I think I misunderstood your question, so forget it. I just … well, I say take it easy and don’t push yourself to injury, is all. It’s easy to do with running. You have good shoes, yes? Relatively new? And you replace them often? Don’t forget to do that. It’s so important.

All Adither
14 years ago

My cat wishes it were your cat. He never gets to go out.

We had a nice weekend too. The weather certainly didn’t hurt.

Lesley
Lesley
14 years ago

I’m an ex-runner, but back in the day before an injured knee took me out, I found Gabe Mirkin’s site very helpful. He’s a medical doctor and an athlete and he has a lot of running and fitness tips.
http://www.drmirkin.com/fitness/index.html

Angela
Angela
14 years ago

When I first started running, it was with my boyfriend at the time, who was quite a seasoned runner.

He always said to me, it’s a matter of endurance, and stamina. Keep a steady and constant pace, and you will improve. He always encouraged me to run slower, therefore, increasing my ability to actually make it home with out feeling dizzy, and like I was going to die from my entire chest collapsing. Not to mention that unpleasant burning and dryness at the back of your mouth, that makes you feel like you want to vomit.

I found this method actually worked really well for me and I was getting pretty good (for me anyway) until we split up, and I subsequently stopped running.

I would like to get back into it again though, but I’m really not looking forward to the whole re-priming my body for running again. Ugh.

clare
clare
14 years ago

i’m all for interval sprints/jog if you want to improve your aerobic fitness and/or burn fat. your body sets itself in a holding pattern if your pace remains constant. its the same as weights; if you can 5 sets of ten reps super easy all the way through then you’re not going to build any muscle are you? i’ve found that twenty min of INTENSE, and i mean INTENSE interval training has twice the effect as jogging for an hour, even more so if you do twenty min in the morning and then again in the evening….. it keeps your metabolism working hard 24hrs a day.

Misty
Misty
14 years ago

i am another runner. slow and steady with increase your endurance pretty quickly. There is another good website http://www.runningahead.com Cool Runnings used to be really good, but a few months ago, it switched sponsors or sometihng, and isnt user friendly anymore. RA has some AWESOME forums, with great people and info. Late Dec, I couldnt run a quarter mile, and now I can run about 4 miles without stopping/puking. And I just did a half Marathon a few weeks ago (13.1 miles). It only really took me about 4 days before I could feel my body apendages again. Um yea, probably not what you have for a goal, but it was one of mine.

Josh
Josh
14 years ago

I also had one of those do nothing all weekend holidays. It was AWESOME, and I don’t even have kids. There was a spontaneous cookout, and … nothing else. It was great. Fuck doing things when you could be actually relaxing. And I found out that I don’t have to go to court on Tuesday, which added even a little more relaxation to my weekend, without, you know, looming jail time. I just sat around and smoked weed and drank burrs and didn’t really accomplish anything besides cooking some really good food and cleaning out the garage part way.

I do happen to know quite a bit about running, and my professional opinion is that you should not talk about running until my friggin memorial day weekend is officially over and I wake up to a new work week, thank you very much. Vacation sadist!

clarabella
clarabella
14 years ago

Yikes, the running. Makes me wheeze a little just thinking about it. Good thing torn knee cartilage has knocked me out of that workout.
But–Good Luck to you! I’ve had friends love the C25K too.
Just wanted to say your family and yard(!) are beautiful as always.
And Cat, well, Cat still looks a little evil to me.

hollylynne
14 years ago

Oh my god . . .that first picture of Dylan . . . I can’t handle the cuteness!!!

aibee
14 years ago

The training style you choose depends on what you want to achieve.

Do you want to be able to improve your endurance for running miles and miles? Or is your goal to be able to perform a series of high intensity intervals without needing paramedic intervention when you’re done?

Both training styles will improve your fitness, but one will make you more aerobically sound, while the other will increase your anaerobic fitness.

Upshot? It’s like training for any sport, and if you want to be a good swimmer, you don’t practice your badminton to improve your freestyle.

That being said, if you want to interval train, you’ll still need a reasonable aerobic fitness base to start with- which you can then convert by training anaerobically.

Trina
Trina
14 years ago

I *heart* cat. Only because mine is equally as evil. :)

I am also jealous. My son is one month older than Dylan and he doesn’t have nearly that much hair.

Chloe
14 years ago

Couch to 5K is only intended to be done three times a week, so doing it twice a week (and just doing the third workout the next week) shouldn’t hurt too much, IMO. While running 5k is a goal, you don’t have to do a 5k afterwards– it just means that you can run for a half an hour straight without falling over and dying.
I think you want to improve your AEROBIC fitness, from the way you describe your goals… so it’s better to run shit-ass slow and go for longer. It’ll burn more fat too, because your body will have time to convert fat to usable energy. When you start running, you’ll be going extremely slow for a while, but eventually the speed will come (with time, with time).

I’m so jealous of your arms in that picture with Dylan! You don’t look even SLIGHTLY plump to me, for what it’s worth. Looking very svelte, even if you still have a bit of a pregnancy belly (which I can’t see, but I guess you can’t fit comfortably into your expensive jeans yet).

Rachel
14 years ago

a few things about running (something I am very bad at, so you probably know these things already):

Your body starts burning much more fat for energy after 20 minutes of cardio exercise. Until then you’re burning liver glycogen, but then you run out of that and your body starts breaking down fat into fatty acids so that it can construct glucose molecules from their parts. So I think the sustained jog/walking — anything that keeps your heart beating at an aerobic rate — would be better for fat-burning than sprinting followed by longer stretches of walking. (Guess who just took Nutrition 10.)

Also, when I was on the high school track team (not because I was a good runner but because my boyfriend was on it and hey, guaranteed hanging out after school), we would do a long endurance run and then a short cool-down jog/walk and THEN we would do windsprints. So maybe do your hard stuff at the end of a more steadily-paced jog.

Thirdly, I’m sure someone else mentioned this, but have you thought of the Couch to 5K program? It’s basically a low-key way to move gradually from jog-walking to more-jogging-less-walking and then into jogging-all-the-time. Lots of people have success with it. Just google it and you’ll find the info.

donna
donna
14 years ago

Dude, the only way I’d run is if someone was chasing me.
I have several thoughts about your pics tho, Dylan is killing me with cute, he and Riley look exactly alike, (are you sure Dylan is new and not a clone?), JB and Riley are smiling exactly the same, and Dylan is looking SUSPICIOUS!
Also you are very skinny and cute, your grass is perfect, and cat had just had a good roll in it didn’t she?

B
B
14 years ago

Is that a hint of suspicion on Dylan’s face in the picture of him with JB and Riley? It was only a matter a time….

Eric's Mommy
Eric's Mommy
14 years ago

Glad you had a good weekend!

We didn’t do much either. Went to a BBQ at my inlaws. While we were sitting there eating, in the shade under a big umbrella that my Mother inlaw just bought, a big gust of wind came by and picked the umbrella up into the air and smashed it down on the porch breaking it. Then I got sunburned.

Cass
14 years ago

You look fantastic #1 and I guess it depends on what you’re trying to achieve with the running. If it’s improved muscle tone then the sprinting and resting is the way to go – it helps develop your fast twitch muscles. If you’re looking to set a larger fitness goal (which is my plan once this baby girl gets her eviction notice) and train for a marathon (even though I’m not sure I’ll actually “run” in one) I highly recommend the Non-Runners Marathon Trainer…helped me train before and having a pace defined kept me motivated.

Erin
14 years ago

Oh! OH! I actually know something about this topic.

I’d run shorter intervals right now, and walk longer. Gradually move more toward running, but not an entire hill. And no sprinting! Maybe run the first half of the hill, walk the second. There is no need to sprint. Ever. Or at least until you are running most of the time and want to train to pick up the pace. Mainly, I’d do whatever will help keep you getting back out there, feeling like, “hey, I want to do this again tomorrow,” or however close to that you can get, then do THAT.

Good thing you put the text at the end of the post, because those photos of the boys made my mind go totally blank. It was very zen-like. They are SO CUTE. And WOW, Dylan is really looking like his own little person, you know? Like he’s not a newborn anymore.

Allison
Allison
14 years ago

Wow, Dylan is getting so big! Seeing that you can handle two kids and not lose your self or your sanity makes me thing that maybe I can do it… eventually. One’s enough for now.

Anonymous
Anonymous
14 years ago

There are already too many comments than I have time to read right now, since I am on a public computer with 3 minutes left in its session, but as a long-time runner I will say that both types of workouts have different benefits for different fitness purposes.

I think for yours, which as I understand it is general fitness and weight-loss, then continue jogging even at a slow pace to build endurance.

But the shorter, harder sprints are good, too, and ultimately it’s exactly that sort of cross-training stuff that will produce the greatest weight-loss & fitness improvement. So I say, do both, but alternate the days. Devote some sessions to running without stopping, and others to the harder-shorter variety.

If you want to do a 5k again, then the second kind will do the most to improve your race time.

Deanna
Deanna
14 years ago

Babies not runnig —
Hey- my little girl is quite taken with one of your boys. She’s almost one and this morning she saw their photos on the screen and lit up- all smiles and coos. Then she looked at me and back at the screen and did a HUGE sigh. *grin*
Yeah, your boys are dolls and I am not sure which one she fancies but this does not bode well if she s boy crazy at age 1!!

Samantha
14 years ago

I have no advice on the running thing because I can’t run for shit, I look like a goober doing it and usually have a severe asthma attack after doing it…

But I just wanted to say, your kids are so cute! I’m so jealous of you! :)

eve
eve
14 years ago

I only run when being chased by bears, but I just have to comment that you have the most gorgeous family ever! You are adorable, each and every one of you!

Jolie
14 years ago

I am adding to what’s already been said just to second it.

I would suggest (if you’re looking to build up your endurance a little- which will make ANY workout you choose later a little more bearable. God forbid- even enjoyable) working on running without stopping if you’re a beginner rather than running fast until you die and then walking. as others said, sprint intervals are good, even as a beginner, but not every day. try to switch it up so that you’re doing both evenly- working on your endurance one day and working on hard core hill workouts others.

you’ll probably feel really lame slugging along and barely jogging instead of walking, but as far as building your endurance it really will help and you will be going farther sooner than you think.

claire
14 years ago

I thought the same thing would happen to my weekend: be filled with the endless tedium of dealing with a baby. But it turned out way better.

Swistle
14 years ago

Your babies = so cute. I had thought no baby could be as cute as Riley, but I was WRONG WRONG WRONG. Also: I think Dylan looks like a JB clone.

Gwen
14 years ago

Well, I was going to suggest the Couch to 5k program, but it looks like a bunch of people beat me to it. It’s great, though! I’m actually planning to restart it this summer (first year of law school = very bad for working out) and try to run a 5k or 10k in September.

Sarah
14 years ago

Hi there! I am poor at commenting usually but you asked about one of my favorite topics! I am not a trainer or anything, but I would personally advise to continue the short bursts of speed/hills on one of your workout days, pushing to make them longer, and on another day try to run farther, gradually improving your overall speed. This will keep your muscles from getting lazy and used to the same kind of action all the time. Just my two cents, I haven’t read the other comments! (Going to do that now since there’s probably some good advice!)

Stephanie
14 years ago

I am a former fat girl who had to walk for like EVER before I could even get to a jog, but I prefer to do a ramp up then slide back down strategy. I think I learned this in some magazine like Health or something. It works best on a treadmill bc you can see how fast you are going, but it works outside too.

Start at a basic easy pace and slowly increase, run like hell is at your heels for like 30 seconds then slowly decrease.

On a treadmill this would amount to 5 min at 5 mph, 4 min at 6 mph, 2 min at 7 mph and 30 sec at 7.5 mph then back to 7, 6, 5. Then a lovely cool down. I am sure you can just approximate the speeds by the burning in your legs and lungs.

Beej
14 years ago

I walk all winter and jog all summer. Here’s how I wean off the walking to full on jogging in the spring:

Week 1
Walk 5 min, jog 1. Repeat until you are done with your route.

Week 2
Walk 4 min, jog 1. Repeat.

Week 3
Walk 4 min, jog 2. Repeat.

Week 4
Walk 3 min, jog 2. Repeat.

Week 5
Walk 3 min, jog 3. Repeat.

Week 6
Walk 2 min, jog 3. Repeat.

Week 7
Walk 2 min, jog 4. Repeat.

Week 8
Walk 1 min, jog 4. repeat.

Week 8
Walk 1 min, jog 5. Repeat.

Then after week 8, you will eliminate 1 walking stop per week–first eliminate the first walking stop. Then eliminate the second, then third, etc.

As for your jogging speed, I am of the “do what you can” school of thought. To me, jogging is all about the attitude with which I approach it. If I look at it like a chore, then it will remain undone like last night’s dishes. But if I look at it like a personal challenge, or even just a time to be by myself to let my mind wander, then it’s actually quite nice.

Even if you are jogging slowly, you are still jogging and just give yourself some credit for just getting out there and doing it. If you stick with it, you will eventually get stronger at it.

If you beat yourself up about it too much, you’re not going to enjoy it. Enjoying your time to jog is what will get you doing it and looking forward to it.

Joanne
14 years ago

I agree with those that said you should run so you enjoy it. Since you are not training for a marathon, (yet), just try and do what makes you feel good. I find there is a natural progression through the walk/run where you just feel like jogging sometimes, and then you feel like going faster, and then it’s too much so you slow down, and so on and so on. I think there are also podcasts you can get for different kind of runs and you can let your music be a guide.

nonsoccermom
14 years ago

Eee! Your kiddos are cute cute cute. Dylan’s little cheeks just kill me.

Your cat looks suspiciously like mine. Does she bitch constantly too?

Jules
Jules
14 years ago

Whoa, I did the Couch to 5K program, too. I had no idea that it was so popular, or so successful for so many. I, for one, can vouch for it. Before trying that program, I always wanted to be a runner, but I felt like dying when I actually tried to run.

My verdict is that I was trying to go too fast, too soon, and for too long when I had tried to run in the past.

In the Trenches of Mommyhood

I vote the Endurance/Stamina route. When I first started running, I MADE myself go 30 minutes w/o stopping. Granted, it was barely a crawl…

Debbie
Debbie
14 years ago

I did a 5K training progam after having my son and was only able to go twice a week instead of the progam’s three times a week schedule. Most of those work well as you don’t overdo it on the run part and you find yourself wanting to say five minutes without stopping then you could jump into the program at that point. I was never much of a runner before I had my son but it is mostly what I do now as I can do it from the house and it’s quick. When I feel ambitious, I take him along in the stroller.

Debbie
Debbie
14 years ago

Somehow I totally butchered that comment. I must have hit a key before submit. I was trying to say the programs usually leave you wanting to run more than you are “allowed” for the day. I would figure out how long you can run comfortably now and jump into the program at that point.

Cara
Cara
14 years ago

Like a couple of other commenters, I only run when being chased as well. But I did have to say that it’s nice to see that suspicion apparently runs in your family, as demonstrated by Dylan in the picture of all 3 of your guys and the one of Cat.

Meagan
14 years ago

I would recommend Dance Dance Revolution. Running blows.

beach
beach
14 years ago

you have gorgeous kids…

the goddess anna
14 years ago

I can’t run (anybody have a spare knee to lend me?), so I cannot help there.

The pics are beautiful – your kids are so cute! Although I’m really commenting to say something about Cat – how awesome is he in that last picture? I’m part-owned by an identical black cat… good to know that mine’s not the only one that looks so evil while just chillin’ around. : )