And so it begins

That was such a great run!

I feel great!

What a high!

These are thoughts I really thought I would be having by now. I started running 5 months ago. Now, to be fair, I was already used to physical exercise when I began. I could work an elliptical machine like nobody’s business. So, for me, running was training different muscles, but I did already possess some cardio strength.

So I thought.

Five months later and I still find every run difficult. I do it, not looking forward to the thrill of the run, but looking forward to having the run done and over with. Is this normal? My husband says he’s able to daydream while running thereby separating mind and body and allowing him to enjoy the experience more. There must be something wrong with me b/c I just can’t seem to do this. All I’m able to focus on is how much distance/time is left and how much every step hurts.

Cue today. 5:45am. I am awake in that kind of first-day-of-school excitement, afraid I will oversleep. At 6:20 I get out of bed, creep downstairs (carefully not to wake sleeping babes or husbands), pop two Advil b/c dang I got a wicked headache, change, and head out the door. I walk 5 minutes or so to my starting point. I place my water bottle at what will be my finish/start for every lap I do.

And I start to run. The first 10 minutes in any run I do is always hard, so it came as no surprise that this hadn’t changed today. I managed 4 “laps” in total, stopping at the end of every lap for about 20 seconds—long enough to gulp some water and do 10 jumping jacks (why? oh just b/c I can and I figured it made up for the gulping water break).

Lap 1: Slow but I managed to run it completely
Lap 2: I stopped to walk once, going up the slight incline of a hill, for about 30 seconds
Lap 3: I stopped to walk when I came face-to-face with an unknown German Shephard. Now, I like dogs and am considered a “dog person,” but even I am not stupid enough to run past an unleashed dog I do not know. I probably had to walk about 45 seconds before I was out of sight of the dog.
Lap 4: Same thing happened with the dog. I’m either going to have to get to know this dog, or change my route.

So I wasn’t overly thrilled with my run. I don’t usually stop and having to stop so much defeated me a little bit. However, on a positive note, I freakin’ got out of bed at 6:20 to go for a run! I’ve never done that before! The breeze felt fantastic. The quiet was oh-so-nice. Saying hello to the one guy who came out to get his newspaper wearing nothing but shorts (I must have surprised him) was even nice. And I am not an outdoor runner. I realize I have trained my body to run indoors—on a track; on a treadmill…on an even surface. Running on broken surfaces, sometimes involving twigs (we live in a wooded area…it’s impossible to avoid all branches/twigs on the road), is new. Running up an incline is new. Facing dogs while running is certainly new.

So today, instead of focusing on what I did not do, I’m choosing to pat myself on the back and take stock of all the new stuff I did. I do believe I would like to keep running outside and this will be a challenge for me. I will have to toss out the window my “stats” and progress from when I ran on a treadmill. In a sense, I’m starting over. Let’s see how it goes.

I’m not quite sure exactly how long I ran for. We do believe that each lap was about 1.3K. If I did this 4 times, I ran 5.2 K, which is awesome for me, but I did stop a few times so…who knows. All total, including warm-up and cool-down walks, I was outside for 45min.

Interesting aside: The headache I had when I woke up completely disappeared when I started to run, even allowing me to listen to my ipod. Once the run was finished, however, it came back with a vengance. Borderline migraine actually. Nice that it was kind enough to take off while I ran though.

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About Christine

Christine is the co-owner of Manley Mann Media and on the Board of Directors for the Islanders By Choice Alliance. In her spare time, Christine enjoys a good cup of coffee, an excellent book, and a square of chocolate (to off-set her love of food, she also enjoys various exercise endevours!).
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2 Responses to And so it begins

  1. Andy Roberts says:

    Arnold Schwarzennegger once said, “Everyone has time to exercise; it just depends what your priorities are.” This is true. The man’s a genius.

    In 2000, I decided to try and shed my excess weight, and ultimately I lost 80lbs, coming down from 240lbs to 160lbs in around 6 or 7 months. I attribute this to the fact that I did little, often, and regularly. Thus, I’d prise myself out of bed at 6:15 a.m., shower, work out from 6:30 to 7:15, come home, shower, then head into work.

    I did this 6 days a week, and though the early starts took their toll later that night, the boosted metabolism (coupled with getting into work early) really helped kickstart my day.

    The moral really is to keep trying to find that sweet spot in your day where you can exercise uninterrupted, and the routine/pattern/mindset that suits.

  2. Christine says:

    Congratulations on the impressive weight loss Andy! That’s amazing.

    I do believe that mornings shall remain my “sweet spot” shall we say. Evenings are too jam-packed with toddler/mom stuff + side projects and I don’t enjoy running during my lunch hour.

    I like the thought that little + frequent = a lot. I can work with this equation!

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