My running has been pretty inconsistent the past two months. I seem to be able to get a quick 30 min hills run in on Mondays but my scheduled Thursday pace run and Saturday long slow distance were spotty at best. Then there was a break when I had a nasty respiratory bug. I felt so guilty not exercising and blogged about it. I really couldn’t run, actually I got very winded walking to and from work. So much so I had to stop a few times to catch my breath. I was so grateful for the shared wisdom on my flu post about when you take it easy or push through.
So last Saturday I decided to do my pace run. I trotted off on a slightly longer route as I looked for the distance I can cover in 30 min, my recent routes were getting too short as my speed has increased.
I was going at about 75%, not sure how my lungs would be, faster than an LSD but it didn’t feel hard. I thought about a lot of things, including my next few blog posts, and my mind wandered. At one point I looked up and realized I was nearing the halfway point of my run and I hadn’t stopped to walk. My lungs felt good and my legs strong so I just kept going.
Until that moment I hadn’t been fit enough to NOT agonize over every step. I would focus on my breathing and make it to the next telephone pole or intersection. Each running step had been agony. It felt pretty amazing to feel somewhat effortless as I went along.
As I rounded the last turn of my loop I realized I wouldn’t need to stop at all!
Sure it was a short 3.5 km but I had not walked once. Amazing.
I was kind of surprised and when I did stop I made a lot of noise. Lots of “ah” and “oh” and of course cussing 🙂
I went to take a smiley selfie but the gasping surprised one seemed more legit.
Then Monday I had my hills night. Each outing over the past month I had done 1 thing to make it longer or harder. First extending my warm up loop, then adding a rep, then adding distance to my cool down. Monday I decided to run both up & down. Until then I had needed to walk the downside to catch my breath. Wahoo!
Thursday I made my pace run and added a smudge more distance. It was really warm. I hit my target pace and kept it fairly consistent. I listened to my body the whole run and I didn’t need to walk.
I was chatting with my sister Anj and she was amazed at how I’ve reclaimed running.
In military college I was kicked out in fourth year for failing to run the 2.4 km under 12 minutes. I used to hate running partly because it never came easy to me, partly because of anxiety and asthma but mostly because I wasn’t very fast. I don’t care now how I measure up to others or even my 20 year old self. I’m feeling strong and fast for 41 year old me and that is pretty awesome.
I hope you are having great workout moments, maybe you should blog about them!
3 thoughts on “The day I forgot to stop running. ”
Nat I just had a huge “YES – Me Too!!!!” Moment. I used to turn myself inside out trying to run my 2.4km in 11:45!!!! I vomited. I once failed by 3 seconds and was on notice. Passed by 3 the next time.
Then the time went up to 12:30 out of training and I used to get in at about 12:15. But it was always terrifying when I was due for my PT test.
When we got the option of a 500m swim in lieu of running I took it and didn’t look back!
But it scared me off running for a long time. I hated it and thought I was no good – that i was a hideous embarassment to myself. Which is bollocks, I can run – I just can’t run as fast as others. Doesn’t make my running any less awesome. Such a shame that military standards ruined it for me as an enjoyable way to train for such a long time. Anyway. I have reclaimed running for me and now find it very satisfying. Even on a bad day. Wobbly thighs and all.
It is so great to read that you are getting your running groove back and enjoying your running for you too. I hope you continue to enjoy the heck out of it!!
YES! Once you get over a jump running is the path to nirvana … or something .., or maybe it is. Hmmm. Personally, I love how it helps me stop giving a duck about stuff that never deserved an ounce of attention. Glad you’re reclaiming running!
This is so awesome! I just started running (probably a week ago) and like you said, I am agonizing over every step! I long for the day that I can say “I kept going, I didn’t need to stop!” But this post of yours totally gives me encouragement! Thank you for sharing this! And congratulations on your run, I hope one day I can say the same thing! 🙂
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