Saturday, November 3, 2007

Treadmill potato

I'm walking as I type this blog entry. In the last 21 minutes I have checked the weather forecast online, read a couple of articles, kept tabs on the the muted Alabama vs. LSU ball game and I have been walking during all of these activities. I'm sure my writing progress is not nearly as efficient as normal, but its not bad considering that I'm getting in some exercise while I do it.

I'm walking on a treadmill on which I have attached a shelf for my laptop. A few feet away is a TV and the remote rests in a pocket on the treadmill. This setup allows me to be a "treadmill potato."

Rather than parking my rear end on a couch and surfing the Net while watching a ball game, I now make a regular practice of walking during these activities. This is better for my heart and my waistline. During the Virginia Tech vs. Georgia Tech game on Thursday evening, I walked 10.3 miles and burned a little over 1,600 calories if the meter on this treadmill is accurate.

Mind you, I don't set any speed records walking this way. Right now I am moving along at 3.5 miles per hour. But I suppose some progress is better than no progress.

Four years ago I temporarily lived right at the beach for six months. During those months I lost almost 70 pounds. How? I walked on the beach for about 80 minutes a day nearly every day: 30 minutes each morning and 50 minutes each night. I loved those walks.

After moving off the island of Holden Beach and onto the nearby mainland I did not walk as much. I still walked some, but not nearly 80 minutes each day. I just could not seem to get motivated to walk around the neighborhood like I walked on the beach. Slowly I put a great deal of that 70 pounds back on. Not all of it, but too much of it.

A few months ago I invested in a used treadmill and I started walking more. Two weeks ago I made a commitment to walk 80 minutes a day on the treadmill in order to hopefully duplicate the good results I had walking on the beach. In order to reach my 80-minute goal I multi-task on the treadmill as described above. It has only been two weeks but I have lost a few pounds and I am enjoying being a "treadmill potato" for now.

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