This is how fitness goals get derailed


My friend Tina and I started walking together a few months ago, and our aspirations suddenly grew into this grand idea of participating in the Great Aloha Run in February (8.2 miles). We set a schedule to meet every Sunday.

We asked my husband, a former UH athlete-turned-coach, for training tips. We were thinking of a loose agenda, like, Increase your distance or time by ___ increments every week. 

I should have known better, because this is a man who loves to calculate and record his split times for fun. He came up with a more complicated program for us that involved heart rates, followed by an ever-increasing  series of calisthenics to do after the walk.

We tried to obey, but we stopped fairly quickly, after two Sundays or something. In our defense, things just got overly ambitious and complicated.


People’s children came along. People’s dogs came, and dogs zig-zag, pull, and take pee breaks. The holidays came. People fought head colds. 

After Tina and I reconnected in early January, we congratulated ourselves on simply waking up and being ready to walk at 8 a.m. on a Sunday. We think we’re heroes for walking for one whole hour.

The kids come, or the kids wait in the house. The dogs come, and it just is what it is. A walk with these dogs is at cross-purposes with serious training.

Now we call it what it is: a slow, one hour pet walk for fresh air, followed by social hour over a nice cup of coffee for another hour. So the thing that started as a footrace has become a coffee talk, but that’s OK, too.


OK, 30 times is an exaggeration, but this sure was an indecisive day and I take full responsibility. My husband and I got into the car to take a walk one Sunday morning in Nu`uanu. After, we said we’d go eat lunch at Ala Moana Center. All of these were my suggestions, with him being completely agreeable to every change.

Here are all the iterations of the plan:

Original: Walk Nu`uanu, eat at Ala Moana Center
Walk Nu`uanu, drop gift at friend’s house in Makiki, eat at Ala Moana Center
Walk Makiki, drop gift off in Makiki, eat at Ala Moana
Drop gift off first, walk Makiki, eat at Ala Moana
Drop gift off, eat at Ala Moana first, walk mall after like retirees
Eat at friend’s house in Makiki because he so generously insisted, walk Makiki after
Final: Eat at friend’s house in Makiki, socialize for three hours, go home, never walk

Great walk! Anyone want me as their training partner?





Author(s) on this Post

Diane Ako

Peace of mind By Diane Ako I like to reflect on life. Sometimes it’s philosophically. Sometimes it’s humorously. For all its beauty, life is far too difficult a journey to take alone. You need the support and connection with others to help carry you along the way. Writing brings me that connection– within and without. It clarifies my thoughts and feelings. It helps me reach out to others for advice, wisdom, or feedback. Your thoughts become your actions. Your actions become you. A wise yogi- Patanjali- said, “Speak what is true. Speak what is pleasant.” Let’s speak of things pleasant to one another and seek some peace of mind along the way. ABOUT Diane Ako joined Hawaii: In Real Life in October 2016. She likes being part of a community of local bloggers – people who like writing and sharing, like she does. Ako is an anchor/ reporter at Island News (KITV4 – ABC) in Honolulu. She previously anchored and reported at KHON2 (FOX) and KHNL (NBC), and at stations in California, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania. She freelance writes for NMG Network's magazines. In between news jobs, in 2017, she launched and ran her own p.r. company, Diane Ako PR. From 2010-2014, she headed the public relations department at Halekulani Corporation, which oversees luxury resort Halekulani and boutique hotel Waikiki Parc. She’s been blogging since 2009 – before Hawaii: IRL, she wrote for The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the state’s largest daily newspaper, where her stories garnered a dozen journalism awards and an Emmy nomination. Ako has a BA in Communications from Menlo College and an MA in Political Science from University of Hawaii at Manoa. She volunteers as a board member of the Honolulu Gay & Lesbian Cultural Foundation, a Shinto shrine maiden at Daijingyu Temple, a citizen-scientist studying shrimp, and a yoga teacher at a senior center.

Diane Ako has 274 posts and counting. See all posts by Diane Ako

5 thoughts on “This is how fitness goals get derailed

  • February 9, 2017 at 12:07 pm


    My weekly workouts are like this, I run, maybe more like a fast jog, 4 miles 3-4 times a week and either standup paddle or paddle one canoe once a week for 2 hours.

  • February 9, 2017 at 7:19 pm

    You crack me up! I “jog” a couple days a week. I have trouble gaining on fast walkers and normal joggers pass me on the fly. Wait, did I say “fast walkers”? Some of them are old , retired people. Lol!

  • February 20, 2017 at 8:25 am

    Me! I really want to walk with you! 😀


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.