30 Day Fitness Experiment

What can you do for your body in 30 days?

Walk Your Way to Portland, Oregon

Day 096 - Manoa Falls Hike
Image by CharlieBoy808 via Flickr

I’ve been fighting off my previous sedentary existence for 6 weeks now. That seems like a good chunk of time, but it’s only 42 days. I don’t know why 42 days seems like a shorter time than 6 weeks, but they are in fact the same. What difference has 42 days made? 42 days into this project, I can do so much more than I could when I began. For example, on Day 1, I vowed to walk “at least 15 minutes per day.” That first week, it was really hard to get up, go outside, and walk. I wanted the 15 minutes to be over so I could sit down again. Now I regularly walk for at least an hour at a moderate pace without feeling like it’s going to kill me. I enjoy it. I can even carry on a conversation.

Can you walk for an hour? Would you enjoy a three hour hike? If you started walking every day, could you build up to an all-day hike or even walking a 5K or 10K? (A 5K walk is a little over 3 miles, and can be done in about an hour at an easy pace. A 10K is twice that, or about 6.2 miles.)

If you answered yes to the above questions, try this: Take two easy 45-minute walks per week. On two other days each week, take 60 minute walks, one doing some interval speed work– see point #5 on this post, and the other, do intervals again but go even faster and include some hills. So you’re alternating a 45-minute walk, a 60-minute interval walk, another 45-minute walk, and another 60-minute interval walk. Take a day off somewhere in there, and every weekend do progressively longer walks, starting at 40 minutes and working up gradually to a 5 hour hike. Oh, and take up to 22 weeks to do this.

Do you know what I just described? Marathon training. Yes. I said a marathon. 26.2 miles. If you are able to walk for an hour on a regular basis, you are ready to train to walk a marathon (after you talk to your doctor about it, of course). Check out these 18-week and 22-week training guides from PBS.

Guess what else: The Portland Marathon, known for being very walker-friendly, is scheduled for October 10th this year: 10-10-10. That’s 23 weeks away!

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May 3, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , ,

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