Run!

That’s what I wanted to do yesterday evening. Run away that is. From the Rwenzori Boot Camp.You may call me a sissy or a wimp, but wait till you have George as your trainer, then maybe you won’t judge me so harshly.

Yesterday, it was just Joy and I that showed up for the Boot Camp, so George’s whole attention was on us.
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You know the routine by now – George drives in (and he is an excellent time keeper!), parks his car, opens the door, and we sort of peer tentatively and apprehensively into his car to see what contraptions he has brought to the work out.Yesterday he had added more soil to the 15 kilogram bag be carried the other day. This time, the weight was 21 kilograms. He then pulled out a tyre, not the 60 kilogram one. This one was about 20 kilograms.

He first made me carry the 21 kilogram bag with one hand at a time, back and forth in the drive way. He strapped the tyre to Joy and made her run up the hill. That was the preliminary round before the warm up round. We did a few warm up exercises and then the running began! George asked Joy to carry the 21 kilogram bag on her shoulders and run up the drive way, onto the road and run about 200 meters with the load on her back. I was to do the same, but with the tyre strapped to me. We ran up the drive way and onto the road. We ran back and forth on the road for about five times. Each time, we would exchange loads – so we all got a feel of what it’s like to run with a 21 kilogram bag and to run while pulling a 20 kilogram tyre. And we sweated buckets!

I am still trying to get used to running. I actually hate it with a passion. But I keep telling myself, I have to remove that negative thouphoto (40)ght about running from my head, and just do it. Many times as we ran, I literally wanted to give up and go home. I almost did, it took all I had to restrain myself from bailing out. When the going got tough, I would walk a bit , and then run again.

After that round of runs, we rested and did some more running. It seemed like for the whole hour, all we did was run. Short runs, long runs, fast runs, slow runs. Yesterday was tough. Joy and I protested the hard workout, but George would not let us off the hook. He kept telling us to push ourselves. On and on he went – “Push yourself, push yourself, push yourself”. He told us to dig deep within and find more strength to go on. I told him I had hit the bottom of my well. He said there is always deeper to dig. So I tried digging a little more.

The hour went by excruciatingly slowly, but it finally ended. And I was glad that I got through another work out, hard as it was. All I can say is I am not the road runner yet, but I hope I will become like him at some point in my life!

During the work out, George gave us a few tips that I would like to share:

1. If you are working out hard, remember to observe a day of complete rest with no exercise. During exercise you stretch your muscles and you need to allow your muscles to contract, through rest, in order to maximize the benefits of exercise. Also, if possible, get 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Sleep helps revive the body.

2. If you are working out hard, you need to get a massage at least once every two weeks. Preferably, have the massage on the day you rest from exercise.Road runner

3. Drink plenty of water – at least two liters of water a day, and do not compromise your nutrition. Eat healthy. Eat wisely.

4. Include swimming as part of your exercise regimen. Swimming is a whole body work out. Water is denser than air, so it provides more resistance and hence a different kind of work out for the body.

5. Aim at working on your heart. The heart is a muscle that needs to be worked. Do exercises that increase your heart rate.

6. For those interested in mountain climbing, you need to get yourselves used to the thin air which is part of the mountain climbing experience. Kabale has excellent hills that help with this, so if you can, include a trip to Kabale, to climb.

7. As you sweat during exercise, your body loses a lot of essential salts. One way to replace them is through drinking oral re-hydration salts. These days there are flavored ones on the market.

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