Oranges 2 Oranges

Looking Back at 5K and Moving Forward…

Announcing My Other Blog!

Hi all! It’s been a long time! I hope if you’re here to read about my 2008 Couch to 5K program that you can find inspiration and motivation to keep going whether you’re thinking about starting the program, about to start or are somewhere in the middle. You can do it if I can do it! Links to each week are to the right.  –>

I’m here today to tell you about my new blog that started in February, 2015. Head on over and check it out! It’s called With a Dog by My Side, and in it I talk about life and living with our two dogs I call our Bubs.

Thanks for coming by!

Shannan  ❤

Copyright Shannan Raucci

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Let’s Try This Differently…

Hi there, everyone!

I just moved three posts into “Draft” status, as they’ve been sitting here for all to see without my actually having done anything about what they promised I’d do. In them, I talked about how I was going to start a 10K program and that I was going to start it x-number of weeks ago (3.5, to be exact). Things happened, and I never got started. That’s not to say that I’m going to lay down my workout gear and start hanging clothes on my trusty treadmill.

I actually did begin to get ready at the time I had promised, and things just went awry. I sprayed silicone on the wrong side of the treadmill’s belt. While trying to move the treadmill into place shortly after that, I banged my left heel into something and made a sizeable gash in my foot, rendering me useless when it came to being on my feet that day, and I certainly couldn’t wear shoes (for a few days) until it healed. My husband and I did walk together a couple of times later that week, but I’d planned on getting back into this the following week. That never happened. The momentum was gone, and it would take another wave of enthusiasm or motivation – or whatever you want to call it – for that to come back.

Well, now it’s back. I’ve got a new perspective on certain things and I’m ready to get back to the exercise, to the activity, to being stronger again. I’m not following a program this time. I was going to do the Galloway Method for running a 10K, but I’m not going to. I can’t use the structure right now, and I just need the freedom to go, go, go. That’s my momentum. Forward motion without the dits and dashes that come with writing everything down. Right now it’s not my style.

So follow along with me as I write about it once in a while, and please continue to share your own stories in the comments, but I’m thinking of revitalizing this blog into something else, something new and interesting that I only ever dreamed or wondered about in the past. I’d keep my old Couch-to-5K (C25K) pages up here, but I’d be moving into focusing less on running and more about other adventures on which we’re embarking. (No, we’re not adding another member to the family…) This is about living life more widely and seeing more of the world, even if for now it’s no more than a state away. It’s about moving forward as a couple, along with our dogs, seeing what’s out there and learning some things along the way.

So…join me when you can and stay tuned!

~ Shannan

PS. As I had mentioned in a previous post that I’ve removed, I’ve changed the appearance of the blog and am working on a new color and font choice, so you might see that changing over time to something that works.  🙂

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Summer or Other?

Hello everyone!

It’s been a cool summer after the heat wave we had a couple of weeks back. It feels more like fall than anything, so it feels like we’re missing out on getting the hot temps we’re supposed to be getting. I want the heat back!

Has anyone been set back from or encouraged to go out and run due to the current temperatures where you are? How’s your progress if you’re doing the C25K program this summer? Summer can be a busy time, which makes it difficult to keep up with a set schedule, so if you’ve started, keep going!  🙂

~ Shannan

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How Are You (doing so far)?

Hello! Welcome!

It’s been over a month since my last post. It’s been over 4 years since I started this blog on my quest to record my Couch-to-5K progress. It was meant to be both a public and personal journal of what it took to get through those 9 weeks, and I got some feedback from readers during that time. There have been over 7,700 visits to the blog since, and I’m wondering if any of you are still out there.

If you have read through this blog and it has helped you in any way, please…let me know. Comment here. Let me know how you’re doing on the Couch-to-5K (C25K) plan or weight loss, adding exercise to your routine in general or whether the C25K changed anything in your life. I’d like to have a conversation and talk about things that might be bothering you or encouraging you about this plan, and it could help others to make that decision to try it. It’s been a while, but you might just teach me something I hadn’t learned in my own trek through those weeks when I was doing the workouts. Maybe the conversation will switch to something else. That’s okay, too.

If you need a refresher and it’s been a while since you came across this blog, peruse the weeks…they’re listed at the top and to the right. Thanks!

Have a happy and healthy day!

~ Shannan


4 Years after the Couch-to-5K…

December 26, 2012

First, I’d like to thank you for visiting my blog. The main purpose of this blog is to let you see what my Couch-to-5K (C25K) experience was as I was going through it back in 2008. For the most part, it’s remained that way ever since.

Please use the links at the top or to the right to navigate around the specific weeks’ entries. If you are currently considering doing the Couch-to-5K or are having trouble with it, these entries might be of some help. I hope you find something useful here, and feel free to comment on any posts; I am still eager to hear from you and answer questions about my C25K experience.

As for myself, four years later, I’ve gone through some things in life that have taken up a lot of my time and energy, but I’ve always retained my ability to run, and that’s something that the C25K did for me. As I write this, I’m on Day 1 of being back on Weight Watchers, and I’m thrilled to be back on the plan after a long break. I look forward to getting back onto the treadmill and the bike and getting back into shape.

Have a safe winter and keep in touch!


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Wow, Has it really been this long?

I hadn’t realized just how long it’s been since I posted here. What started out as a way to track my progress on the C25K turned into other things, and then it just tapered off. I guess I should try to keep this up so that I can track my progress in my next endeavor: going back to school, this time for Massage Therapy, in September! I’m excited about it, but there’s this summer to get through. There are still a few months at my current job, getting all my health-related tasks (shots, CPR training, etc) done for school and getting my books and scrubs.

I’m going to try to update this more often. Again, I just wanted to check in so you know I’m still here.

Please…Look around through my blog, and if you’re interested in the Couch to 5K (C25K), you can read my entries for each of the weeks. The links are at the top of the page and on the right side. THANKS!


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Long ago and not-so-far-away….

I’ve been away for a while, but I wanted to check in and let my visitors know that all the weeks of my Couch to 5K diary are still here to be read. I may be back soon to start updating on my running progress and what I’ve been doing over the summer with that. Have a great day!

Shannan  🙂


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So this was new…

Last week, I think it was, maybe longer…too busy…the days are blending together…hubby and I were on one of our evening brisk walks. We were approaching a fire hydrant on one of the streets in our neighborhood, and hubby says, “let’s run to the hydrant.” I was pleasantly caught off-guard and then agreed. We went past the hydrant to the end of the street. It was a quarter of a mile. Our streets are long and curvy, so each “block” is about a third of a mile. I was so happy that he’d want to join me in the running like that, even if it’s in short spurts.

Of course, we started out going too fast, as I had done a couple of weeks ago, so we talked about that as we continued our walking (and my deep breathing as if I were at 5,000 feet). About .2 of a mile away from home he suggested we run to the end of the block, and we did, starting off slower and then speeding up again. As we rounded the corner, hubby suggested we go to the stop sign and then our own street  — and the promise of home. Wow, even his encouragement to keep going didn’t help the fact that I felt like no oxygen was reaching my bloodstream, but we made it to that stop sign. Either way, I’m thrilled beyond words that hubby would do that with me. For a moment I had a running partner!

I’m not sure if I mentioned it before, but I had figured that since hubby’s knees are kind of shot from his work as an auto technician I wouldn’t ask him to try running with me, back in the fall when I was doing the C25K program. I had recently sensed that maybe he wanted to give it a try, but I never pushed it, even saying that it might be too hard on his knees. Well, he didn’t have any problems after that first try. I’m hoping we can do it again.

On the Overnight Walk front, I reached my goal a couple of week ago, and now my friend and teammate, Annette Hernandez, is gaining on her goal. She’s about 64% of the way, and I think she’ll make it. It’s been a real roller coaster ride with the fundraising. But you really see who supports you and/or the cause when you have to raise so much and they don’t hesistate to jump in and help. I’m so grateful to everyone who’s donated to mine and my friend’s goals. If you’re reading my blog for the first time, you can read the past few prior posts and watch the video that is in this post.

I’m off to work. Have a great week everyone! I hope it’s as pleasant where you are as it looks to be here this week: around 75-80 and sunny most of the time. I’m looking forward to more walking and running OUTSIDE!

Shan  🙂

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Finally did it…pretty much hated it…maybe.

Okay, so I finally got it together and got outside and ran. I’m not as excited about it as I thought I’d be when I got done. I had at least one problem with it. I felt great about 1/3 of the way down the street, and then the fact that I started too fast caught up with me. I think on the scale for VO2 Max values, I’m at the bottom. I have never been able to withstand too fast a speed without gasping for air (about 5mph on the treadmill – which I now know is not the true speed of my running on it – or it is with smaller strides). My legs can go on forever, but it’s the breathing that knocks me out.  Here’s a little chart I found at


Do you see where it shows that the non-athletic females aged 30-39 are in the range of 30-38 VO2 Max? I must be the 30 they’re talking about, and it appears to only get worse from there. I’m in no way an expert, or even really that knowledgeable about it, but if that’s a measure of “a person’s aerobic potential or upper limit,” as stated on the same web page, then it seems to me that it’s playing a part here. At least part of it might not be my fault. The site also says, “Genetics plays a major role in a person’s VO2 max, and heredity can account for up to 25-50% of the variance seen between individuals.” Sounds good to me.

I got going at a good pace, and did to the end of our street. I say street because it’s not a true block. It spans .27 of a mile. Then I walked to the next street and continued on for another .17 of a mile. Then a short walk, and then I continued on home, which was another .14 of a mile. The entire way around the “block” is .7 mile, and I ran .58 of it (about 4+ city blocks).

So about 1/3 way down the street, when I felt like I had started too fast, I started feeling like I do on the treadmill, when I tell myself to just stay at this pace and keep steady, and all I have to do is stick with it for the duration. My problem – not having done this outside, without a machine telling me how fast to go – was that I had no idea how to go SLOWER. I suppose the smart thing to have done would be to actually LOOK at the Garmin (GPS) and keep track of it that way, but it never dawned on me to do that. Do I take shorter strides? Do I take slower strides? Slower is harder on my legs, but easier on my breathing. I suppose it just takes practice and getting used to doing.

I loved the first minute of it, though. I didn’t care much that my ipod was about to pull my pants off from bouncing up and down, clipped to them. LOL Or that I felt totally vulnerable just running from my house out onto the sidewalk, down the street FOR NO APPARENT REASON. I never do that. I’m a pretty quiet neighbor, and this was a strange thing. (Quick, random thought about my speed: I think part of it is that I can take longer strides outside, and what was being measured was the distance over time. On the treadmill, my strides are shorter, and it measures as a slower speed. Judging from my breathing, what I was doing felt like a steady 5-5.5 mph on the treadmill, though my average was higher. See my stats below.) Oh, and it was about 51 degrees outside.

All in all, even though I told the hubby I’d never do it again – which is what I kept promising myself as long as I could just get home in an upright position – I’ll probably get back out there at some point again.

Here are my stats for today. I’m not that great with the Garmin yet, so I ended up just stopping it, resetting the lap and starting the next lap, instead of just hitting the lap button. I’ll also post the map. I did not record any of the walking, which is going to be what the blank spots on the map and times are. There are 2 of those.

Segment 1: Home to end of street

7:30:38am – .27 mile/2:25 min/Avg Pace 8:58/Avg Speed 6.7 mph/Max Speed 10.4 mph/34 cals

Segment 2: Next street to halfway down

7:33:58am – .17 mile/1:33 min/Avg Pace 9:22/Avg Speed 6.4 mph/Max Speed 7.4 mph/20 cals

Segment 3: Back to home

7:36:39am – .14 mile/1:26 min/Avg Pace 10:21/Avg Speed 5.8 mph/Max Speed 7.1 mph/17 cals


Around the "block"

Around the "block"

I started at our house, which is at the bottom left-hand side of the blue line, where you can see where I ended up when I got back. I moved in a clockwise direction. The map really makes it look like I went far. I guess all-in-all, for the first time out, I should be happy with what I did. I only had two short walks, which I can see now. They seemed longer when I was doing them, when I felt like I had failed because I couldn’t keep up the whole time around. I really need to work on slowing down. I tried, I really did. I guess it just takes practice.
I think I’d make a good sprinter.  🙂
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So yesterday, Monday, I went beyond my fundraising goal when two mail-in donations came through. It’s amazing to me that there are still people who are willing to help the cause, help me and understand my reasons for being a part of the walk.

Hubby and I walked after work again yesterday for 32 minutes (about 2 miles), around the neighborhood, after a weekend of doing other things. Hopefully soon, we’ll be going for longer periods of time and for longer distances. I do the occasional workout on the Wii My Fitness Coach or a DVD, but I’d prefer making it all brisk walking or running for a while, along with some weight training. That combination seems to work the best for me. Anyway, it’s been easier getting in the exercise, especially with the American Cancer Society’s Get Active Challenge hubby and I are doing as part of our city’s team. I just need to get in more minutes, since I set my goal at 60 minutes a day, 5 days a week. That means doing something during the day that’s going to supplement the walking.

Here are my numbers, starting on 5-4-09, not including today:

Total minutes walked & run: 32

Miles walked: 1.97

Miles run: 0

I’m pretty close to sucking it up and going outside to run. It may happen this week. I’m not going to say when or else I’ll talk myself out of it. I’m more of the just-get-up-and-do-it-or-you’ll-talk-yourself-out-of-it type. It’ll be on a whim, even though it’ll take 15 minutes to actually get dressed, stretch and get properly covered in gadgets. I’m wondering if I’ll be able to a) go around the block without walking and b) keep going past the house for another lap. It’s .7 mile around our block.

I also want to say to Thomas, I hope your first day at the new job went well.  🙂

Have a good day everyone,


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