Oh, Running

[there's just something about the start...]

Oh running, I love you and I hate you. And I also accept that when I start trying to talk to most people about you their eyes roll back in their heads, so I'll take advantage of this space to yammer on and on about this super volatile relationship of mine. 

I have been a runner for probably a decade or so, plodding away through a dozen half marathons and several 5ks and 10ks. I have terrible lung capacity due to a lifetime of on-again-off-again asthma, several foot issues, and a bum hip, so I will never ever be close to fast. But, in terms of caloric burn and convenience it’s often been the exercise I turn to. It's also a way to push myself and remind myself, simply, that I can. I may not be wonderful at it, but I am capable of covering long distances in one go (which still impresses me since in middle school the idea of running the mile made me want to stay home sick). 

For the past six months I’ve run four times a week to train for the Surf City Half Marathon, which was this past weekend. I did one long run on the weekend and whatever I could get in time-wise during the week. The half did not really go well- my body was totally fine, but it was really warm with no cloud cover (on asphalt). I do miserably in the heat and after six or so decent enough miles I started feeling that familiar light-headed “hmm will I pass out?” sensation and knew that this was not going to be my race. I had a moment of sadness, but after all this time I know that this sort of thing just happens and is part of the whole running races process. So, I slowed to a walk for the first time. Seconds later my cousin, who I had seen at the start, magically appeared and we spent the rest of the run alternating between running and walking, catching up on the last year of our lives. I was also able to spend the night down there in a hotel room alone, so despite not having a rock star time I was still fine with how everything went down. More than fine, actually. 

I’m actually really glad that it’s all over, since I’ve been really wanting to diversify my exercise lately. I miss yoga! And walking with the incline cranked up and getting on my bike! I need to really incorporate weights and ab work into my life, something I’ve always neglected. I’m also pretty confident that this will help me shed a few pounds. It’s a well-known fact that most people actually gain, or at least maintain, their weight when training for an endurance event, since you are constantly hungry and may not always make the best choices (raises hand… with the other shoveling Girl Scout Cookies in her mouth).

I will never say I won’t run a half marathon again, because I have before and have had to eat my words (not as tasty as cookies, sadly). I don’t have one planned immediate future, though, and am just looking forward to rounding out my fitness. I do intend on continuing to run, though, and plan on always maintaining and ability to go at least 3-4 straight. I am fortunate enough to have had made exercise such an important part of my life that I don’t have to have something to train for to be active.

1 comment:

  1. I'm training for a 10K right now. I can do 5K's no problem but haven't gotten past the 5 mile mark yet. I listen to podcasts and whatnot but my brain gets so bored. Great job on the half, even if it didn't go as well as planned!