Welcome to Getting Fit at Fifty

My name is Art Davis and I started running in 2007 to lose weight. Check out my before and after photos at the bottom of the page. I ran my first 5K and 10K in 2007 I went on to run my first half Marathon and full Marathon in 2008.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Southern Illinois Spring Classic

The Southern Illinois Spring Classic Half Marathon and 5k supports Kids Shopping Day in Lawrence County. The race starts at the Parkside Elementary School and runs into Lawrenceville around the square back out to the Elementary School at that point the 5k veers off and finishes on the track around the football field, while the half marathon takes off to Bridgeport.

It was a cold morning 26˚ at race time, I really did not start feeling warm until the 4 mile marker, where I handed a sweatshirt off to volunteers.  The course is fairly flat and is a nice run in the country from Lawrenceville to Bridgeport and back.

Waiting for the race to start.

Here I am closing in on the 3 mile mark.

Getting close to the end!

The race ends on Ed Loeb Field.

Crossing the finish line!

At the end of the race with my medal and a bottle of water.

With Scott Bosecker, the overall winner.

Coming soon The 2015 Kentucky Derby Festival 1/2 Marathon.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Final Long Training Run

Follow me on my final long run before the Southern Illinois Spring Classic Half Marathon on 3/28/15.

Conventional wisdom states that in order to prepare for a half marathon your long run is 10 miles, I am not conventional. To prepare for a half marathon I do a full 13.1 mile training run . This strategy is not for the first time half marathoner, before trying this your body needs to be conditioned to being able to do a 10 mile run at least once or twice a month.

A certain person who worries about me did not want me to run outside because it was too wet and muddy. Where would she get an idea like that?

It had rained Friday and clear into Saturday morning so I had to put off running until Saturday afternoon. During the first mile my body felt stiff and took a little longer to loosen up than normal. During miles 2 and 3 I was having to hold my body back to a 9 minute per mile pace.
Miles 4 - 8 I settled into a pace of about 9:25 per mile. Miles 9 - 13 I was having to push myself to stay below 10:00 minute miles. I finished 13.29 miles in 2:07:28 with a pace of 9:42 minutes per mile.

Look! I passed a car!

Good thing it was parked.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Goal Setting

People frequently ask "How do you stick with running?" or "How do you run so far?" The short answer is, you need to sign up for a race. It is amazing what you can accomplish once you have a goal.

It is easy at times to become excited and sign up for several races and lose focus. I learned that it is best for me to not sign up for over 2 or 3 races at a time in order to focus and allow my body time to recover between races.

My first goal when I started running was to run the Koman 5k in Evansville. It fit the criteria of being Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic and Time-bound.

A goal becomes more than just a dream when you fill out the entry form, pay the entry fee, print out a training program, and attach it to the refrigerator door.

After you accomplish one goal you need to replace it with a new goal. I ran a 5k, next was a 10k, then a half-marathon and finally a full marathon. Now I have set goals to run my races faster and run longer without having to stop and walk.

Share your goals selectively. I share my goals with my cheerleader who will encourage me and help me work towards my goals.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

10 Mile Treadmill Run

Winter weather in southwestern Indiana convinced me to run inside yet another day.  I ran 10.12 miles in 99 minutes indoors on the treadmill today. The treadmills at our apartment complex have a feature they call "Virtual Active" that simulates running outdoors in one of two places the American Northeast or the Northern Rockies.So today I ran around the Northern Rockies. The treadmills are touchscreen so you start the process by tapping Virtual Active and then choosing your location.

You then enter your weight, time (length of workout) which today was 100 minutes, For the difficulty level I chose level 3 today because it feels slightly more challenging than running outside. MPH, I warmed up at 6 mph or 10 minute mile and finally your weight which helps the treadmill calculate your calories burned.

The run starts out in the Badlands National Park,  It gives you several minutes to warm up on nice flat ground but the treadmill never went below an incline of one.

A nice low grade to simulate running outside on flat ground.

The treadmill weaves through Custer State Park.  When the video is set on full screen you actually feel like you are curving to the right or left.

The run peaks at a grade of 5. During a run of 99 minutes you run up the grade of 5 three times.  In addition there are hills with inclines of 2.5, 3.5 and 4.

This is running up a hill at a grade of 4 in the Grand Teton National Park.

The run concludes at Yellowstone National Park. If you are running over 30 minutes it repeats and starts over at the Badlands National Park. 

When you conclude the treadmill furnishes you a nice workout summary, including the distance ran, time, average pace and calories burned.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

First 10k

First 10k

My first 10k was the Thanksgiving Day Race 11/22/2007 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  During the training I was having to stop and walk during my long runs. My longest run was three weeks before the race and it was 7 miles.
At the beginning of the race a few people cramped up during the first steep hill and had to stop and walk. Close to end of the race I was beginning to run out of steam, but was able to suck it up and finish the 10k without walking. I finished the 10k (6.2 miles) in 1:07:24 with a pace of 10:52.

Sporting my T-shirt before the race.

It was cold the morning of the race, everyone was bundled up and trying to keep warm.

The starting line for the race.

The race finished in the Paul Brown Stadium.

Getting close to the end!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

10 Mile Run

The body is an amazing thing.The way it can bounce back from sickness and injury is incredible. I finished the Disney Marathon with a nasty blister on my right little toe, that was several layers of skin deep. That is finding out the hard way that you are running in the wrong size of shoe. The blister was caused by my little toe rubbing against the side of the shoe for 26.2 miles, After we flew home from vacation I went to the Doctor with a sinus infection. Between both the blister and sinus infection I was unable to run for a little over two weeks. Today with very little time back at running I went outside and ran 10 miles without having to stop and walk. Needless to say I am a little pleased with myself so come with me on a 10 mile run.

Heading out the door the goal is to do an LSD (Long Slow Distance) to gauge my recovery. Heading into the first mile it felt really good, running into the wind and not getting winded at all. I remember thinking in the back of my mind "just go for 10 miles". About 4 miles into the run I cut through the parking lot of a Doctor's Office and the wind was starting to pick up. The office's flag looked pretty blowing in the wind so I stopped and took a picture of it.

The ground in this area is flat and open so the wind really picks up and forces me to slow down my pace, telling myself "This is good training". 8 miles into the run I start getting tired and am thinking "maybe this wasn't such a good idea after all." Then I turn a corner and the wind is at my back and I keep running. Getting close to the end the wind again is in my face and I am telling myself "You can either walk home or run home, it is going to take less time if you run." The run finishes in front of the clubhouse at our apartment building. Their flag is blowing straight out in the wind, this is a picture of it

Remember, just keep running!

Sunday, February 1, 2015


Approximately 50,000 runners participated in at least one of the 4 Run Disney events. The Marathon alone attracted approximately 20,000 runners. The marathon weaved through all 4 parks, down service roads that connect the parks and the ESPN Wild World of Sports Complex.

Welcome to the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon. Join me for the fun!

After picking up your packet it is recommended that you try on your shirt to make sure that it fits.

Presenters at the expo included John Bingham, aka "The Penguin", Dave McGillvray,  the Race Director of the Boston Marathon, and actor Sean Astin.

Mickey and Minnie are wearing their Run Disney costumes.

The Pasta in the Park was held in Epcot, the night before the Marathon.

Sporting my marathon shirt passing Spaceship Earth on the way to the Pasta in the Park (carb loading event).

For dessert none other than a Mickey Mouse ice cream bar.

Since the Disney Marathon starts at 5:30am, we had to get up around 2:30 in order to catch a 4am shuttle to Epcot.

Disney used technology, fireworks and fanfare to kick off the marathon.

As each group of runners are released fireworks are set off.

The finish line is in Epcot near Spaceship Earth.

The winners are showered with confetti as they cross the finish line.

Here I am heading towards the finish line.

Getting a high five from Donald Duck.

Welcomed to the finish line by Mickey Mouse.

I am celebrating finishing a 26.2 mile run.

Here I am with my medal immediately after the race.

What do you do after you run the Disney Marathon?
You go to Disney World!