Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Very Small Steps: Building Leg Strength and Stamina

I decided to start walking 2 miles a night a few weeks ago to make up not being able to skate every day.

What is the average walking pace for a mile on the flat? According to some websites, 15 minutes on the flat.  According to my experience when I was in college, 15 minutes on the flat. According to my present day elderly lady experience, it's 18 minutes uphill.

 Here's what's working against me.
1. I take tiny steps---I'm only 5'2"and with stubby legs.
2. Most of the route is one steep hill and that slows me down
3. As I'm constantly reminded by some of my 'friends', I'm old.

Here's what's  working for me:
1. I take tiny steps--many quick tiny steps are better than extending the stride.
2. The route is uphill. This builds stamina.
3. I'm old---and wily. I improve my technique as opposed to just flailing

What's happened? I started out at 47 minutes for the two miles and now I'm at 37 minutes. Part of that gain is improving walking technique, but the rest of it is an improvement in strength and stamina. Will I ever get to 15 minutes a mile uphill?  The stubby legs may mean I'll have to run part of it, so we'll see. I think I can cut off a few more minutes.

What's the result on my skating?

I'm faster. Much, much faster.

I'm quicker.

I have more stamina.

In only three weeks.
I started out Like This

Ended up like This
It doesn't take much to improve your leg strength and stamina, so worth a try if you can't skate kid hours.

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