Editor's note: This is the second in a several-part series. The first one was published in the April 24 edition of the newspaper.

Update on “The 24-day Challenge”:

I have gone through the “Challenge” and come out the other side.

Pounds lost were less than what I hoped for but the inches and how I felt during the process allows me to qualify this as a success.

I feel good and I have also learned a lot about a sustainable path towards better fitness and better running. By tracking foods and using the supplements provided by Advocare and Bud Summers, I have begun a sustainable path towards better fitness.

Below is the “tale of the tape.” Since I last weighed in, I have dropped another two pounds so this journey is one that I categorize as one of progress, not perfection. I have also been able to sustain a “less than 9-minute pace” on a five-mile training run.

My son drove by me while I was running a couple of weeks ago at night. He said he didn’t recognize me at first because of my new figure; my thick middle has not exactly melted away but I guess it shows some recess.

I did have a rough weekend of golf on Martha’s Vineyard with the fellows during the first weekend in May. It got in my way and set me back a little but I did manage my longest run of the year while the “others” watched the Kentucky Derby, ate munchies and drank heavily. I made up a little for lost time upon my return, but the eight-mile, one hour and 20 minute exploration of Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven on foot helped me keep a little focus on my eating and on my fitness path during that weekend.

In addition to the tale of the tape, here is my running tale of the tape:

TaTa Trot 5K in Belfast on March 30, 2014

Reade Brower, 57, Rockland, 27:19, 8:48 per-mile pace

Mother’s Day 5K in Rockland on May 11, 2014

Reade Brower, 57, Rockland, 26:17, 8:28 per-mile pace

An improvement of 20 seconds per mile meant one minute two seconds faster during the Challenge Period. Not outstanding, but solid progress. I also felt much better after the Mother’s Day run than I did five weeks earlier.

Additionally, I have continued to build on my mileage and had a 7.5-mile training run that came in under a 10-minute pace and a long group run last week of 8.5 miles that ended with a healthy breakfast.

I have been slowed down by the diagnosis of a possible tear in my hip labrum muscle. I slipped on an ice patch while running outside in early January and have been in low- to mid-grade pain ever since. Thought it was a muscle injury at first and didn’t associate it with the fall. When it didn’t go away I suspected an adjustment issue and remembered the fall. But the pain wouldn’t go away so I recently had a MRI which revealed a possible tear. Not sure what the strategy will be, but that has been a constant so won’t enter into any comparisons.

TALE OF THE TAPE: Saturday, April 12, 2014 to Thursday, May 8, 2014

Weight: 211 pounds April 12 to 208 pounds = 3 pounds less weight

Chest: 46 inches April 12 to 45 inches = 1 inch lost from chest

Waist: 47 inches April 12 to 43.5 inches = 3 ½ inches lost from waist

Hips: 45 inches April 12 to 45 inches = no change

Thighs: 24 inches April 12 to 24 inches = no change

MY FITNESS GOALS: I will continue to run with the Go! Malawi running team and will try and lose more pounds and inches, while improving my 5K times. Will also continue training with Bud for our next destination marathon and half-marathon in San Antonio in December.

Join me on the streets this summer. The G0! Malawi runners will again host the second annual “The First” Summer Solstice 5K in downtown Rockland. It is a night race and will be held Saturday, June 21 at 6 p.m. The start is downtown Rockland and the road race is part of the solstice celebration and street dance. Race start is in the downtown branch of The First's parking lot.

For more information about Go! Malawi runners program and our destination marathons email: reade@freepressonline.com.

For more information on Advocare, email Bud Summers, “We build champions”: sterlingvlll@me.com,

For more information on Janet Littlefield and Go! Malawi: go-malawi.org.

Reade Brower of Camden is owner/publisher of Courier Publications/VillageSoup.