Set your goals high but not your expectations. ~Dove

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Pound the pavement

In an attempt to balance my mind and my soul, I've decided to dust off my running sneakers and hit the roads.  Although, the roads are completely covered in ice, salt, sand, and snow.  Luckily I do have a treadmill collecting dust in my basement.  I've missed being able to pound the pavement, but over the past four years, a lot has been going on. 

Four years ago I accomplished my first and only 5k road race.  It was quite exhilarating, and I haven't really experienced anything like it since. 

So what's been going on in four years?  I got married, bought a house, had a kid, and have been trying to find my new balance in life.  I'm not one to exercise daily, weekly, or at all.  I go with the flow.  It's not the best course of action for my health and wellness.  My doctor is clearly aware of how immobile I am.  My two year old keeps me quite busy for the moment, and that seems to have been doing fine for me lately.  But now, I need something more.

I need something for my sanity.  Something that can help me focus on one thing and one thing only.  I have tried Yoga, but that doesn't really get me focused like others say it does for them.  My mind wanders too much.  So when I run, excuse me... when I jog, it's different.  I am forced to focus on my breathing.  I know that for every two strides, I am exhaling and inhaling.  My feet hit the pavement and I'm in a trance.  One two, breath in, one two, breath out.  Honestly, if I don't focus on my breathing, I have a bad habit of holding my breath, or losing track of my breathing.  So badly that I get horrible, painful stitches in my sides to the point where I have problems catching my breath.  I don't want to over exert myself, so this is why I start my runs with complete concentration on my breathing.  After some time, I don't even notice it and it becomes second nature to me.   But I know what I need to do.  It's just a matter of doing it.

I recently learned about a program for people like me.  It's called: couch 2 5k.  It's a 9 week program and you work on it 3 days a week for 30 minutes.  I think I can do that.  So I looked at the detailed schedule and it actually seems doable, and since I have a treadmill it's even more inviting that there is a treadmill routine.  Perfect!  So I've printed the schedule and I'm excited to start ASAP.

Eventually I'd like to tackle a 5k again.  I'm interested in doing a couple, but my goal is to do at least one.  So for now, I have 9 weeks of prep work to do.  I'll let you know how it goes.

What about you?  Are you an avid runner or walker?  Have you registered for a race before?  Or is the idea too overwhelming? 

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