Why a 50-Minute Run Can Be Even Better Than a 90-Minute Run

Day 346

It has been several weeks since a break day or even a running session of less than 85 to 90 minutes. Yesterday, I made the early decision to jog only 50 minutes today regardless of yesterday’s final results. And while I did gain .1 kg yesterday overall, I am not going to change this decision. Even if today ends up in a weight gain, it’s necessary to shorter the run for my own mental and physical health. Any gain today can obviously be burned off in the coming days or even weeks (presumably it won’t be that bad, though).

When I make an early decision to either take a break or do a shorter workout than usual, that lets me know in advance to be even more careful about my diet. So it would have been a good idea today to not go over about 79.0 at any time. But that just didn’t work out because I legitimately needed a little more food even when getting a little past that point. However, I did stop eating at about 5 in the afternoon, which will probably help. The tough part, though, is that my weight was around 79.6 when I finished eating. This is roughly the same as yesterday’s mark, and I went to bed weighing about 79.4.

However, today is a little better because I expect to weigh less than 79.4 at bedtime because I have about 5 hours for the body to naturally burn off some calories. In 5 hours, I certainly expect to drop more than .2 kg. Thus, I do have a little bit of an advantage as compared to yesterday. I need this advantage since my run will be about 35 minutes shorter than the 85 to 87 minutes from yesterday’s session. I’ll be happy to just break even. That will not bother me, and any weight gain that is .2 kg or less is not that bad, either. Any gain of .3 kg or more would be a disappointment.

I went to bed weighing 79.4 and woke up with another disappointing 78.8. That is yet another low overnight weight loss of .6 kg. This pattern is annoying and ridiculous. It’s going to be hard to maintain weight if this continues. Well, I have said for a long time now that it’s not supposed to be easy for everybody. It takes dedication to shed your excess weight and a permanent lifestyle change to maintain once you reach your goal or at least get close to it. However, something seems harder the past week or so. This losing hardly any weight overnight makes it very difficult.

In this difficult situation, my decision was still to run only 50 minutes. But the one modification I made was to run a lot faster than expected. In fact, I lost 1.0 kg in only 50 minutes! Although this is only one example, it is very indicative of the difference between lower medium intensity and higher medium intensity (this run was probably not intense enough to be considered high intensity). Heck, 2 days ago, I only lost .9 kg when running a full 90 minutes. And yesterday, I lost 1.2 kg when running 90 minutes again.

In this case, I kept a heart rate of approximately 135 for almost the entire run. The first 5 minutes or so were a little slower because I needed time to warm up my legs. But once I hit that stride, I kept it up for the full 50 minutes. That is the only reason I can think of that would explain the much bigger weight loss. It doesn’t take a science degree to figure this one out.

Despite this, the horrible overnight results may cause me to end up gaining weight today, anyway. However, I can feel good about trying hard to make up for that. My weight has experienced wild short-term fluctuations like this before. But as long as these upward fluctuations are no more than a pound or two, then it seems there is nothing to get too concerned about. I just have to keep in mind that it’s really hard to maintain my target weight of 75.0 kg. That has always been hard, and I chose it as a hard weight to maintain to keep me on my toes and working hard.

I was 77.8 after the run, which was earlier than usual. So I had about 3 hours to go after exercising before it was time to do the official weigh-in. My weight was not dropping well. From 9 to 10:30, I dropped to 77.6 despite going to the bathroom. So it was becoming more likely that I was going to gain weight on the day. At that point, I was just hoping to lose at least .2 kg more. The lack of overnight weight loss made it very difficult to lose weight.

My day finished at 77.5 kg, for a daily weight gain of .3 kg. I am happy with the results of my shorter run, and it’s important to keep the focus on positive things. I limited the amount of gain while also cutting a full 40 minutes off of my usual session duration. The gain of .3 is not really because of the reduced amount of running because the higher intensity still allowed me to lose 1.0 kg. It was that pesky overnight weight loss of only .6 kg that hurt me. I’ll be back to 90 minutes tomorrow and hopefully better overnight results.

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