August 23, 2014

Know what I love?: That I ran my first 5K!

I used to hate running.

But because I love to eat, I started doing Couch-to-5K® in March to help maintain my curvy figure while still allowing me the opportunity to drink (all the) beer and eat (all the) pizza (I want). Supposedly, if I ran three times a week for nine weeks the program would take me from being a couch-loving, TV series binge-watching, sloth of a woman (which I had become over the winter) to a sexy, bounding gazelle.

Only... after nine weeks, I couldn't run an entire 5K (oh, and when I run, I still look like a hot mess - less bounding gazelle, more shuffling penguin). Sure, I could do most of it - and that, in and of itself, helped me achieve a personal goal of being able to run a mile straight through - but I still needed a quarter mile walking break after a mile and a half to help me catch my breath.

And then the Color Me Rad happened. It took place five months after I had taken my first step as a runner. I knew I wasn't going to be able to run the whole thing (after all, I hadn't been able to do so yet despite training), but I'd try my hardest and have fun while doing it (eleven words that should be applied to as many aspects of life as possible, by the way).

In the end? I RAN THE ENTIRE 3.1 MILES! All that runner malarky I had heard about adrenaline, and the inspiration and competitive nature one feels from being around other runners in a race, was actually true.

(Yes, I was even brazen enough to wear a shirt that said "#SNOOZE" on it. As in: you snooze, you lose. As in: I'm so fast, you won't catch me. It was supposed to be ironic...)

I was so proud of myself for accomplishing not just running a mile... which is all I set out to do... but running three miles. And few days later, I busted out 3.6 miles! Alright, so a couple days after that I was back to running half, taking a quick walking break, then running the rest... but I'm okay with that. Because this is a process, and if I did it once, I can do it again.

Y'know, I used to hate running.

But now... now, I appreciate it. For thirty to forty minutes I get to go outside, clear away the cobwebs (fresh air really is restorative), be reminded of the amazingly strong and capable body I have, and "disconnect to reconnect" (with myself, with God, with my inner carefree kid, with nature, with my community, etc.) which is the healthiest thing I think we can do for ourselves in this day and age.