Sunday, March 27, 2011

Running for my life

Photobucket Today, after many, MANY months (ok it's been a year) of saying that I'm going to start the C25K training plan, I finally did it. I downloaded an interval training app to my phone and headed to a nearby park with a pretty good fitness track.
The park was packed to the brim with families, so I was prepared to totally embarrass myself in front of a large group of strangers, but you know what? Nobody paid much attention to me and I was too busy trying not to die to notice if they were.
Man, am I out of shape.
I knew it wouldn't be easy but I did not anticipate the pain involved in beginning a running program. Yikes!

I can easily ride my bike 10 miles and never tire, but jogging is an entirely different animal. The program I'm using calls for intervals of 5 mins walking and 2 mins jogging.
2 minutes doesn't sound like very long, now does it? Lemme tell you- it's like a lifetime when you haven't jogged in over 10 years, and you have the lung capacity of an asthmatic toddler. Not to mention forgetting to take both my Claritin and my reflux meds. By the time I finished this morning, I thought my throat was literally going to burst into flames. I did not enjoy 1 second of that. I love to walk, I will choose walking over driving somewhere any day of the week, but running? No. I'm only doing this because if I don't use it, I'm gonna lose it and that was never so apparent to me as it was this morning.

I remember when I was 19, I had moved back to California from Washington state and I had no car, so everywhere I went I had to walk or ride my bike. I look back now and I think I must have been in the best shape of my life because I remember distinctly, one evening just deciding to go for a run.
I got up, went out the door and ran around the park about a dozen times. 3 miles, just like that.
Not that I was quick or elegant, no, but I was able. Just to get up and decide "I'm a runner now" without any planning or worrying. And why can't I do that now? Because at some point I just stopped trying.
So now I have to work 5 times as hard to do something that once came easily to me.

My feet feel like lead, every step seems like more weight has been added and I'm almost positive that I can walk faster that I can run. The entire time I'm doing this (which feels like an eternity but in reality is only 20 minutes at most) I am loathing it. I can't even formulate a thought to describe how much I am despising myself during those 2 minute bursts because the blood is roaring so loudly in my ears that it's distracting me.
When I finish, I'm not even proud of myself.
All I can think about is how the day after tomorrow I have to do this all over again, and then two days after that and so on and so on, forever and ever.
But if I don't just bite the bullet and get my metaphorical and literal ass in gear, I'm going to lose the ability altogether and then where will I be? Stuck on the couch, a useless lump, while the world passes me by? That is unacceptable. That's not really living.
I can't just sit here immobile anymore, waiting for things to happen to me.
From here on out, I'm taking a different road.
No, scratch that- I'll take the jogging path.


  1. Yeah! Go, mama! I love running. After that first sisyphean effort, it will really start to feel good. That may take awhile, but stick with it, it WILL be worth it. I truly believe exercise is the fountain of youth. I rely on it for stress relief, escape, etc. GO. I'm proud of you!

  2. Your honesty is refreshing. Personally, I also hate running. Walking, biking, kickboxing, I get down with-- but running? Gahhhh, no thanks.

    Best of luck! xoxo

  3. Totally.

    There was this one time way long ago when I was going to school in a foreign city and I just walked everywhere. Miles and miles a day. And I wonder how it was I was so tiny then.....ha! I look back at that and think "If I could do that, I can certainly run a little now!"

  4. yay casey! I love running, but it was hard to get back into after years of not doing it. I am only up to running 1 mile at a time but I am very proud of myself. The thing that motivated me the most was not following a plan because I kept getting angry at the rules or trying to reach a certain time/distance. I finally decided to just run until I couldn't run anymore which wasn't that far at first. haha. I have to get back in gear though, so far I've only run 1 mile this year thanks to the bad weather. Definitely going tomorrow. I am also freaked out by dogs and strange men watching me so I try to go as early as possible and if I feel weird I just go right back home.


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