Day 1: My running journey begins

Running is always a sport I admired. It’s something that everyone can related to. We all ran as children. It requires very little equipment, it can be done in just about every place, it can be done alone or with a team. It also has fantastic health benefits. It’s great for your cardiovascular health, it builds muscle, particularly in your lower body. The best benefit is the pounds you shed, and hopefully the svelt physique you end up with.

I have stopped and started a running regiment so many times, I can’t count. Every time I tried to do it, I would be so out of breath, the kind of breathlessness that is scary. So I felt defeated and said it just wasn’t for me. Secretly though, I was always very jealous of those who did it. I wished to myself that I was more like them.

“What’s wrong with me?”, I would think. I didn’t know the reason I experienced such horrible breathlessness was because I was running too fast. A friend of mine, who knows a lot about running mentioned this to me. Wow! Duh! It is that simple eh?

I need to do this for so many reasons. I want to be active in some sport and not just go to the gym because I have to. I really need to shed some pounds. I’m 163. I think If I can lose 20 lbs, I will look and feel a lot better. Charts say that I should weigh a lot less. A few years after I graduated from college I was 135. Most of my friends told me I looked emaciated and I needed to gain weight. (Some of my college friends saw me at that time. KKA and RCB.) I don’t need to be a stick. I don’t expect that. I’m reasonably healthy and I look younger than my almost 39 years would indicate. But, I’d definitely like to be better fit than I am now. With that in mind, it’s time to post some embarrassing photos of myself. If it will serve as a catalyst to motivate me, and maybe others if I’m able to complete my journey.

This is me, complete with back fat, today.

So today, was Day 1 of training to do my first 5K run.

I’m not going to give myself a deadline or wrap parameters around myself in terms of speed. My only goal for the moment is to make steady progress; enough progress that I won’t give it up another time. Once that is acheived, I’ll start giving myself more tangible goals.

Day 1

It’s a great day to get started. It’s January 1st and it is 17 degrees outside, and slightly icy. Of all days to get started. :)

I ran into road blocks because I simply do not have adequate clothing for this kind of weather. I usually by all cotton clothing which gets wet with perspiration. So it was a challenge to get dressed and do this at all. I used a combination of my husband’s pants, and my own cotton long underwear. I did have one turtleneck that is a PolarTek. Here is what I looked like coming back from my run.

I was actually overly warm. Better warm than cold!

The initial goal was to try to do walk-run intervals, 1 minute each, with 10 repetitions. (1/1 x 10).

I did a warm up walk from my house to Myrtle Ave, and then began my interval training. I used an egg-timer to help keep time and had my iPhone strapped around my arm to keep my head throughly involved in music so I wouldn’t get bored. (There isn’t much of visual interest in my neighborhood). I tried really hard NOT to run too fast and fatigue myself too easily. I also tried to think about my feet; to keep myself from running on my heels rather than more on the front of my foot.

I was able to do 5 reps of 1/1. After that, I was not able to recover that easily during the 1 minute walking sessions. My feet also felt like led whenever I switched to running. So I ended up doing 2/1 for the return trip. I’m not going to stress myself out for not being able to do more. I’m proud of myself for just getting out there and trying, especially given how cold the weather is. I completed just a little over 2 miles. You can view walk run route here.

I don’t believe I’m going to be able to get out to do this tomorrow because my husband is working and I have my daughter with me all day. He’s going to need his gear so getting up and doing this before he leaves is not going to work. If I can get behind the Christmas tree, I can perhaps substitute this with a Pilates DVD. Something is better than nothing.