Fitocracy Catch-All

H to the ickle wrote:
I would appreciate an invite.

I still have some, message me the email address to which I should send the invite.

Katy wrote:
Those of you who run -- and like it -- what do you like about it, and did you like it from the start? I always feel awkward about how I'm placing my feet, how I'm waving my arms around, and we won't even talk about how annoying sports bras are.

Up until last year, I hated running. It was genuinely unpleasant. After maybe 2 miles, my back would hurt, I'd be gasping for breath, and it was downright miserable. I tried it a few times, but it never stuck.

I'm not precisely sure what changed. I think I may have approached it this time with better general aerobic fitness going in, which solved the whole gasping for breath part of the equation. And all the aches and pains that made it unpleasant just didn't materialize.

Now that I could legitimately be accused of being a "runner" (although I'll jokingly and snootily respond that I'm not a runner, I'm a triathlete :) ), what do I like about it? So much. I think the key thing for me that stopped it being unrewarding work and starting it being genuinely enjoyable in it's own right was getting fit / accustomed to running enough that it started to feel comfortable. Now, when I'm out for a distance run, I can cruise along at a comfortable pace where I'm barely out of breath, and feel relaxed. Physically and mentally. So maybe just getting over that initial hump was what needed to happen.

The milestones were a big deal when I started out too. First time I ran 3 miles and didn't die was huge. First 5 miles was big. First < 10 minute mile was big. First <7 minute mile was an achievement. Each time I'd incrementally increase the distance of the long-runs I was doing were each big: 10, then 12, then 14, then 16 miles. It's probably my gamer-brain at fault, but I get a lot of satisfaction out of hitting milestones for the first time.

It's telling that these days, I don't start to really enjoy a run until mile 4 or so. That's when I get into the groove of it, when I get a kind of Zen calm come over me, and I can just lose myself in the next few miles. It honestly feels therapeutic - I get in from a long run the most mentally relaxed I'll be all week.

Obviously, I can't comment precisely on sports bras, but in a wider sense, getting decent kit and figuring out how to run comfortably was a big part of success for me too. Obviously, a pair of running shoes that work for you are crucial, but even down to getting a pair of shorts that don't chafe, and figuring out that above 8 miles or so, I need to put surgical tape over my nipples to prevent chafing. Or getting kitted up so I can run comfortably in cold weather (gloves, headband to keep my ears warm etc), or go long (water belt so I'm not restricted to routes that have water fountains) served to remove impediments.

H, shoot me a PM with your email and I'll give you an invite.

Katy, I'm with you on taking care of your legs. I don't do quite so much running, but I'm super paranoid when I do. Running on my forefoot is now my mantra. It definitely exhausts my calves, but is far, far easier on my joints. Oh, and (obviously) don't run on pavement if you can help it.

I ran with Jonman not too long ago; it was fun. I'll second that whole shifting the mindset thingie. If you can find a way to do that, you feel like a rockstar afterwards.

If you're going to join the challenge you only have two days to do so! There is definitely a cut off once the challenge begins and it will no longer allow you to join.

Another tip for enjoying running is to not expect to kick ass right out of the gate. I went from not being able to run a mile without feeling like death to being able to run 3 for fun on my lunch break... but it took me six months to get there.

I really enjoy the privacy of a run. Although you're out in public, no one thinks to ask you what time it is. You can put your cell on silent and ignore everyone for awhile.

Totally. I love the solitude you can get on a great run. When the weather improves, I'll be back to my daily runs at Freeway Park. I can be surrounded by people but lost in my world, climbing stairs, and return to work with energy.

But yeah, it took me a while to crush my steep route. I spent a few months praying for death every other run.

awhite wrote:
I still have some, message me the email address to which I should send the invite.

Thanks for the invite, I'm in as Matphes on the site. It's cool that it hooks up with RunKeeper, since I've been using that for awhile.

Heck yeah. I use that, too.

I haven't been active on the site since December I think, but I didn't stop working out I promise! At the end of march I'm going to do my first obstacle race, the Ruckus Run in KC, just the 2 mile so I can have fun doing it and not get scared. My goal is to do the Tough Mudder in 2013 when there is on in the KC area...so a fair bit of work to get there from the Ruckus, but it's going to be fun.

H to the ickle wrote:
Another tip for enjoying running is to not expect to kick ass right out of the gate. I went from not being able to run a mile without feeling like death to being able to run 3 for fun on my lunch break... but it took me six months to get there.

I really enjoy the privacy of a run. Although you're out in public, no one thinks to ask you what time it is. You can put your cell on silent and ignore everyone for awhile.


I lost my MP3 player. And don't carry a phone. So now, I have even more time to not have outside distractions(exception being the cars trying to mow ya down).

Nobody ever talks to me in public. I find that it's easier to adopt a scowl and a deep sense of hatred than to get fit.

This Quirks & Quarks segment has me even more happy that I'm keeping fit:

http://cbc.ca/quirks/media/2011-2012...

Synopsis: exercise keeps the brain more healthy than "brain training" apps/systems.

I just started jogging today, and the only positive about the experience was gaining a level. The actual jog? I wanted to start yelling out state secrets to make the agony stop.

Heh. That'll change, trichy. At least, it did for me. My first one mile jog had me stopping so often I felt like it was more of a power walk with delusions of competence.

Perhaps this will make the jogging more enjoyable?

At least it will instill a sense of urgency...

That is awesome, Teneman. I hope they develop an Android version. I'd buy it.

Supposedly there's an Android version in the works. I'm tempted to pick up the iPhone version and try it out this weekend.

I went ahead and bought it. I'll report back after running in the morning.

As promised, here's my review of Zombies, Run!. It is awesome. Cheesy, sure, but awesome. Definitely worth the $8 IMO, even though I originally balked at the price.

Without spoiling anything, I highly suggest if you do pick this up to run the first mission outside at least, and on trails vs. streets if possible. I ran the first mission this morning, and ran it on a trail I found a few weeks ago that I haven't been on yet. The trail was muddy, wet and slippery, and it added a whole element of fun/creepiness to the first part of the first mission. Don't get me wrong, I completed the second half of the run on blacktop roads and it was also a blast, but the trail was a nice touch.

There were a couple of things that I was concerned about before I bought it, and without exception they all turned out fine. They were:

  • It works fine with Runkeeper. I kept Runkeeper in the background for the first half of the run, and switched it to the foreground for the second half. Both apps worked fine either way.
  • Runkeeper audio cues don't mess up the Zombies, Run audio. I kept the cues off for the run just in case, but manually forced one near the end of the run - right over the top of a Zombies, Run audio track - and had no problems.
  • The missions are supposedly 25-30 minutes, depending on the length of the songs in your playlist (it plays your own songs between story segments). Mine finished up at exactly 30 minutes. I was uncertain how the app would behave if your run went longer than the mission. It simply tells you the mission is complete, then seamlessly flips over to "Radio Mode". You keep earning supplies and hearing inter-song radio snippets, they just don't have specific mission requirements.
  • Running Zombies, Run alongside Runkeeper did have an impact on battery life, but nothing too severe. I usually go from 100% to 90-95% on a run, with both apps it took me down to 86%. I wouldn't want to start a run with a dry battery, but as long as there's a decent charge this shouldn't be an issue.

Oh, and one more thing. It may be just bad luck, but I think the app cheats. I only have two major uphill spots on the route I ran today. I had turned on the optional Zombie Chase feature, and was attacked by a non-storyline zombie horde a total of two times. I'll give you three guesses as to where those attacks took place. I managed to evade the first attack despite the uphill handicap. The second attack however....

Hey, anybody got a spare can of brains around? I'm really getting hungry.

Damn! That sounds awesome, but I don't have an iPhone. I need to put together a jogging playlist anyway, but the idea of adding something like that to my route is appealing as hell.

trichy wrote:
Damn! That sounds awesome, but I don't have an iPhone. I need to put together a jogging playlist anyway, but the idea of adding something like that to my route is appealing as hell.

Android version is supposedly "in the pipeline". What precisely that means is anybody's guess

Kickstarter says the Android version is due out in May.

I would go for a run just to use this!

Yup. Count me in. I'm Android, as well. I'll buy it.

I pre-ordered, so I got all the content for a year, but I still have to wait until May for the android version. I'm almost tempted to run w/ my ipad so i can see what the fuss is about.

In other news, I'm totally failing on the whole fitness thing. Super stressed at this point in the semester and coping w/ ice cream and whiskey instead of carrot sticks and HIIT.

Ran today. Will try again tomorrow.

I have also failed at the whole fitness thing, though mine was just over the weekend. Went on a trip up to Seattle with my girlfriend and did a bunch of eating and drinking. Running in the morning will be an issue.

Made it into the gym today, which was counterbalanced by the birthday cupcakes the rest of the family made for me while I was there. I turn 21(x2) on Tuesday, but have a band rehearsal that night -- no time for cupcakes.

I have so far resisted the siren call of the seasonal candy aisle, but was severely tempted by the jellybeans the last time I was at the grocery store.

Well got the invite a cople weeks ago but logged for first time yesterday. I'm seriously in need of regaining my fitness so am going to try to level up in this faster than Amalur! Although level of difficulty in that game is less than this one....

Cool to see 135 members in the GEJ group, wow!

H to the ickle wrote:
I have also failed at the whole fitness thing, though mine was just over the weekend. Went on a trip up to Seattle with my girlfriend and did a bunch of eating and drinking. Running in the morning will be an issue.

Failing for a weekend now and then is no big deal. Just pick back up where you left off. Better to give into cravings now and then but generally stay the course than to completely break down over a prolonged period of total deprivation.

I haven't even opened up my fitocracy since November, but I added another entry and may start tracking my exercises on that site again.

I find myself in the bottom half of the GWJ Triathageek challenge, and considering Jonman's training for a real life triathlon I've got my work cut out for me catching up to him. I'd planned on just doubling up my normal number of runs a week, but my knee and I are barely on speaking terms as it is.

So I dug up an old exercise bike that's been gathering dust in the basement and figured I'd cycle my way to some extra points. Sadly the thing doesn't seem to track either speed or distance anymore (though the timer and resistance setting still works).

Any idea how to estimate distance traveled on a stationary bike with no way to track speed? I mean I know I'm pedaling at least 100 to 150 miles an hour, but I'm guessing my fellow challenge members would like a bit more scientific measurement