Challenge,  running

Friday Night and Exercise

Talking Exercise for a Minute…

Since it is Friday night and even the streets of Vegas are mostly empty, I figured it might be time for me to talk about what I promised a while back, and that is regularly blogging here about exercise and weight loss.

It has been brutally hard to do either this last month. Vegas has had the hottest August on record EVER! Think that through. Las Vegas, known for heat, just broke all records. Oh, joy, which made going outside impossible unless you are out and moving at dawn, and even then some of those temperatures this month would have taken a long time to get used to. And I don’t get up at dawn that often.

So over the last month I left the building to get groceries or to pick up a take-out order for dinner, basically only having to walk thirty steps or so from the car to the building. And at almost 70 years of age, I am far too old at this point to take much of a chance at a gym. (The young and immortal are idiots.)

So walking the halls to get steps is about all I have been able to do, and not well at that. And without exercise, weight just does not drop much.

So over this last week I have been madly trying to find goals that will motivate me to first suck it up and get a lot of miles in the hallways while it is still too hot outside. And second, get outside and push the exercise as soon as the weather allows.

So I signed up for three different things to help with motivation.

First, a running club or group that starts at 6 am every Sunday and has a 12 mile course. They even say they welcome my walk/run style, but we shall see on the 30th. Might be a bust.

Second, starting on the 1st of September, I signed up for a virtual challenge. Run/walk 500 miles. Yup, that is nuts, but I’m going to give it a try.

Third, my goal for my 70th year of life is run marathons, as many as possible. (Marathon is 26.2 miles for those who don’t know.) But marathons and other races all year have been cancelled. Including the one I wanted to start off with a week after my birthday in November. But up popped today a really nifty marathon on December 5th. It is limited to 262 runners and will have state approval to happen and the precautions and rules they have set up are amazing.

And the cool thing is that it ends about six miles from our place here. It starts up at the old Mount Charleston ski lodge  (Dec 5th, there will be snow) and goes downhill the entire way all the way into Las Vegas. So I signed up for it. With luck, they will be able to actually make it happen.

But at least I am training for it now because it feels like it will happen. The Sunday running group will force me up early and outside every week if that works. The virtual challenge is so extreme, I can’t miss or slack off, so that will get me in shape if it doesn’t injure me. And the marathon in December is the carrot on the stick to keep me moving.

So this week I start ramping up distance in the halls.

If this all works, I should be down 20 pounds from where I am now by the time the race happens. And I will have a lot more energy.

I will keep you all informed every few weeks on how this is going, which work, which fail. Stay tuned.


  • Mike Southern

    Just a thought on the inside walks. If there are stairwells at the ends of the halls that you can use (or at least get permission to use), you could try doing a variation on intervals — walk a hallway to the steps, walk up a flight or two (since it’s “uphill” you wouldn’t have to try to run to up the effort), then repeat the intervals of walk a hall, climb a flight as long as you’d like. At least it would vary the intensity and break the monotony of just walking halls. It would also allow you more variation in the intensity levels (walk a hall quickly than normal or take the stairs more slowly).

    I used to do some security work that made it hard to get regular workouts, and it helped me a lot.

  • Deb Miller

    A possible suggestion (although you’ve probably already tried this). Sometimes I use audio books to break up the monotony of a longer run or doing something indoors. For me, audio books don’t work if I’m trying to hit a speed goal, and they don’t work when I want to let my creative voice run free to think about a story. But they do work in monotonous situations. I can imagine the hallways might fit that. Anyway, I’ll be cheering for you virtually! I’ve lost 70% of the weight I gained after my bike accident threw me out of exercise. The other 30% and getting speed back are still to come, once the smoke goes away here so I can exercise outdoors again.

  • Maree

    We’ve also had record breaking heat here in California. But I’m close enough to the coast that the early mornings are still pleasant enough for outdoor running. Indoor exercise just doesn’t feel the same.

    Make sure you get some practice in on downhill inclines before your race. It’s too easy to roll an ankle or knee on those downhills if you’re not used to it!

    • dwsmith

      Yup, me and the parking garage will become friends. Those down ramps are perfect places to practice that. Thanks!