Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Varying Your Pace

I've been hearing the phrase "interval training" for awhile now, but didn't know anything about it. I've been faithful for years to go for a nice brisk walk at least three times a week, and that was enough to keep me in shape. Plus I enjoy it, so why tamper with a good thing?

Then the Big 5-0 rolled around, and my body started to change in mysterious ways. I decided if I didn't take action, I'd be rolling around instead of walking, myself.

So, for the first time in years, I've started an official diet. I'm trying out the South Beach Diet online, and one of their newsletters mentioned the benefits of combining interval training with walking. They suggested twenty minutes every other day, in which you walk at a nice, comfortable pace for four minutes, then go really high-intensity for one minute. You repeat that cycle four times.

I love it! I feel that I'm getting so much out of that twenty minutes, and the time just zips by because the exercise is broken into manageable pieces. During that one minute, I can hardly breathe but that's okay, because I know it will be over soon. Then I slow down and enjoy. The next four minutes fly by, and before you know it, I'm back home and feeling great.

There's got to be a life metaphor in there, right? This is probably one of those things you could twist around to mean whatever you like. I choose to look at it in a positive light. Yes, there are times when I don't seem to get much writing or "art" done, but I'm still moving. Then there's the intense time, when I seem to be flying along, heart pumping, excited--full of ideas, turning out those pages.

But I can't maintain that. I have to slow down. That word count that was going to be constant and every day falls by the wayside. But I'm still moving. And there's another intense time coming.

And maybe that's okay, after all.


  1. It's funny how, when I'm writing a whole lot, I'm also getting a lot of other stuff done, too. I'm just more productive in general. I find that strange.

  2. That's the story of my life. I spend more time organizing than doing what I plan during my organizing time.