run run run.

It would seem that yours truly is getting into this whole running thing. Don’t get me wrong – it totally sucks and I still suspect the “runner’s high” is a total myth – but it’s free and it’s good for me, so I do it.

There is an ongoing debate in the running community regarding whether or not to listen to music while running. Some can’t go without it; others say if you’re not enjoying the run for itself, you shouldn’t be running at all. (As one might expect, most people fall somewhere in between these two extremes.)

I shunned music for a while, finding that inappropriate beats and the lulls between songs threw off my pace. Then I discovered PodRunner, an hour-long continuous mix of steady-beat tunes. Now, I can’t run for a whole hour (nowhere near!) but it’s nice to know that the music will continue the entire time I’m hitting the pavement.

That’s all well and good, but other than simply going regularly I don’t know how to improve my stamina (I’m not too concerned about speed). That’s where PodRunner Intervals comes in. Since I’m fat and slow, I’m starting with the 10-week First Day to 5k program. If all goes well, come November I should be able to run for a half hour straight. I might then attempt the Gateway to 8k and Freeway to 10k programs, but let’s take things one step at a time, shall we?

I track my progress with MapMyRun. With it I can tally my time and distance, as well as calculate my calories burned. I’m a fiend for journals of any type, so this is a good motivator for me. On top of that, I’ve linked my training log with Twitter, meaning that my friends know if I’m running or not. In lieu of a coach or run buddy, this keeps me accountable.

(By the way, the MapMyFitness folks have similar sites for biking, walking, hiking, and triathlons. All of them are interconnected; I have walks and hikes in my training log on MapMyRun. How did people train before the internet? I’m sure I don’t know.)

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