Running Re-cap, Exercise on the Internet, etc.

Thank you to the two commenters who congratulated me on the start of this exercise thing. I appreciate your kind words muchly.

First up, an update on the exercise itself. Second up, an update on how I'm using the Internet to help me.

As the summer has drawn to an end, I've backed off on my swimming, but am still running 3-4 days per week. My weekly mileage is now up over 20 miles and my longest run - last night - was a hair under eight miles at a 9:00/pace. To think that I only got off the couch eight weeks ago and am up to that kind of mileage is kind of cool. Again, I think the main reason this time has been successful is because I'm only doing workouts every other day. The rest day seems to be doing a lot to keep the knees, shins, etc.... healthy.

Last weekend, I ran my first race in nearly 15 years! It was only a 5k, and my eager beaver first mile resulted in a less than stunning 26:14, but the good news I came in 150th out of 305 - just ahead of the bubble, so all in all I was pleased.

Also exciting was that my daughter decided to give the half-mile "fun run" a go and finished splendidly. Here's a pic of both of us at the race. (NOTE: this is pre-race. Neither of us looked like this by the end.)

Let's talk about the Internet and exercise for a minute. I've been visiting two online forums and have enjoyed both for different reasons. As I haven't found a place that feels perfect yet, I'm currently keeping two logs.

If you run, it's hard not to love Favorite Run. This website integrates with Google Maps to let you easily map your favorite routes. This is a super cool feature and a great way to plot your runs. I'm a free customer, but the paid package allows for elevation maps, too. You can view my running log and profile on Favorite Run here.

What's not to love? A couple things. You'll note I tried to use it for logging my swimming, but it's a square peg - round hole sort of solution which screws up your averages, too. Works ok for biking, but not for other things. And while you can find runners from your local area, the lack of forums prohibit the site from being one where people "hang out" and get to know one another.

I've also been logging my work-outs at Beginner Triathlete, since I'd like to be doing triathlons within a year. An extremely active community with thousands of members, Beginner Triathlete has an extremely feature rich (albeit mapless) way to log workouts from virtually any exercise and displays really cool graphs. You can view my workout log here.

What's not to love? You gotta give the guys at BT credit - They know they have a good thing going. For that reason, you can't view any more than the previous week of workouts without ponying up the money for a Bronze Membership. While I haven't yet, the feature-rich site is probably due for a few dollars from me. Other than that, Google maps for training routes would be wicked cool. The only other issue is that while there are some triathletes there that favor running or cycling, the reality is that the majority of the action on the site revolves around those who do all three, and as I feel myself focusing on running right now, I don't exactly feel as if I *belong.*

Then again, I certainly belong there more than I did just eight weeks ago.

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