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I totally had that poster when I was 10.

I’ve wanted to take up running for a long time.  Years even.  Planned to start.  Talked about starting.  Looked up races.  Bought running shoes.  But … I never actually started running.

I think a big part of what held me back is that I didn’t want to be bad at it.  I didn’t want to have to walk, or find out I couldn’t go as far as I planned.  I didn’t want to be slow, or look weird with my jaunty gait.  I didn’t want to have to start running, I just wanted to be a runner already!

I’m, um, a little … competitive, maybe?  Like the most competitive person in the whole world; nobody can be more competitive than me.   That kind of competitive.  It’s mostly internal.  I try not to let it show.  Too much.  But it’s there.  I want to win.  Always.

But … I am slow, and awkward, and I have to walk.  A lot.  I am not good at this running thing yet.

I wasn’t able to do my training Monday or Tuesday.  Let me re-phrase that.  I didn’t do my training.  I stayed up way too late Sunday night, then had to work late both days.  I was really tired and focused on work and, well, gave myself a pass.

I did go running this morning.  I did NOT want to get up when my alarm went off, but I told myself that I’d be happy I did it.  And I was.  Even though the run wasn’t all that great – actually, it freaked me out a little bit.

I am so bad at this, you guys!

Let’s take a look at my original training plan, shall we?

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

I was so confident I could just “pick this up,” no problem.  But this morning I had to face the reality that this is going to be harder than I first thought.  My  job is pretty crazy right now, and I’ll likely have to work overtime indefinitely.  I have never tried running before.  And, until recently, (as in, the last few weeks), I really haven’t worked out consistently.

I thought about all of this during my run/walk this morning, and decided I needed to take a step back.  I am still going to do the 5K in September(!!!), but I’m not going to plan to train for the quarter marathon in October.  If anything, I might do another 5K, but for now I am focusing on one goal at a time.  I also need to have a more structured plan to build up to a 5K.  Instead of just saying I need to run X miles every X days, I am going to switch to the Couch to 5K program – albeit a condensed version since it is usually 9 weeks and I only have 7 1/2 weeks until my race!  I still want to build strength, and am going to do more yoga – primarily focusing on my core for better stability.

So, here’s my new and improved more realistic plan (using the Couch to 5K strategy during my runs):

I talked with Allie about this today – about how frustrating it is to not just be good at it, and how I’m a little nervous about the 5K.  I know it’s just 3 miles.  And I know I can do it.  I just REALLY don’t want to have to walk any part of it.

But, then again, I need to keep in mind my real goal in all of this.  Sure, I would love to be some kind of rockstar runner, but my real goal is to create a substantial and lasting lifestyle change – a habit of health and exercise – that I will stick with long after my first 5K.  I have to say, I am loving my more active life, and I already feel weird and antsy if I go more than a day without some exercise.  I’ve been happier, less stressed, and more energetic.  I feel better about my body, even though it is too early for there to be any visual change, just because I appreciate it more.  A few years ago I could barely walk, and I didn’t know if I would spend my life in a wheelchair.  I was in pain every day.  And that could happen again.

So I am grateful for every morning I can wake my ass up at 5:45 a.m. and go running.  That is a good thing.

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