First Year of the New Me Is Now In the Bag

One year ago, on August 16, 2012, I logged my first activity at the new AUM Wellness Center, a 250 yard swim that took 25 minutes. This involved hanging on the wall and panting at the end of every 25 yards, while being totally unable to comprehend how people could lap swim for an hour. The next day, my first run on the indoor track was just under 45 minutes and I made it 3 miles. That’s a 15:00 min/mile pace – blazing.

Now I’m looking back at the original “just get up three mornings a week and do some kind of exercise” goal, and comparing it to what it has evolved in to, and I can’t believe where I am now. I logged over 1,400 miles of activity! In one year.
First Year Totals
First Year Totals By Week
I’ve done three 5k races, an 8k, a 10k, and one sprint triathlon. I’m now training for the Montgomery Half Marathon in October, and my second sprint triathlon (my first open water) in just three weeks. My best pace for a 5k race is 9:05, my only 8k pace was 9:31 on a very hilly course, and I just yesterday ran 13.1 miles for the first time ever and managed a 10:17 pace. This is what my running has looked like:
First Year Running Totals
I’ve gotten my swim pace down from that initial 11:23/100 yard pace to a 400 yard average pace of 2:04. Still lots of room for improvement, but I’m happy. I try to do a minimum of 2000 yards at every workout, something old me could never imagine. This is what my swimming has looked like:
First Year Swimming
Then, in May, just to round things out, I bought a road bike and started squeezing in cycling workouts so I could compete in triathlons. This is what my cycling has looked like:
First Year Cycling
My goal for year two, and really for the rest of my life, is to never let myself get back to the over-weight coach potato I was. I found a great local triathlon club, Team MMS that gives me great opportunities to run and bike with groups of people who push me, coach me, and encourage me. If you haven’t found a local group to work out with, you should go out and find one.

You Think You Finished At the Back of the Pack?

I’ve been working on increasing my weekend Long Steady Distance (LSD) runs, working to build from a previous long of seven miles to fifteen, in preparation for my first half marathon.

And I thought, “I wonder where I stand, as a percent of the U.S. population, just finishing a half marathon”? Try looking up the statistics for your country, if you’re reading this in another country.

In the U.S. in the year 2012, half marathon’s were the fastest-growing length of any race. We had the most ever participants in 2012 – 1,850,000 people. The total population between 55-64 (my age group) was 18,331,065 males and 19,711,907 females. In that age group, 9% of the 1,850,000 finishers was male, and 5% was female. Interestingly, the overall percentage of women was higher, but I guess that women my age missed that groundswell.
I started to run
Anyway, that means 166,500 (9% of 1.85 million) males in my age group finished a half marathon, which means only 0.9% (0.009) of the entire country has even gotten off a couch to try and run this far.

For women, it means 92,500 (5% of 1.85 million) females in this age group finished a half marathon, which means only 0.47% (0.0047) of the entire country has even gotten off a couch to try and run this far.

That means even if you finish dead last you will still be in the 99th percentile of the U.S. population. So the next time someone asks why you get up every morning to run/walk/bike/swim, ask them why in the world they don’t!