Running is hereditary, you catch it from your kids…
My whole life I’ve had this thought that I could not run. My knees hurt over short distances chasing the kids in the yard. Over the years I’ve worked out on a yoga mat, played at water aerobics and using general housework as my workout for the day. Who knew vacuuming brings on a good sweat!?!?!?!!!
This fall as our two kids donned their running shoes it occurred to me that I might put some on myself. They both have improved their stamina over the course of a few short weeks. Both kids have improved their run times and are making “PR” (Personal Record) for the courses they are running. On Facebook many friends are running 5 K races with their kids, or without them. “Mapmyrun.com,” “mapmywalk.com” “mapyourride.com” are just a few of the apps I’ve watched my facebook friends use in the past few months. Then “Couch to 5 K” came to my attention and I decided to “get off the couch and get running!”
See the plan below.
Today is the middle of week two for me and here is what I’ve begun to learn:
1. I’m not so much a couch potato as I thought. The recommendations are to run for 90 seconds, walk for two minutes three times in the first week. By the third workout I was beginning to stretch the last of my 7 cycles to 2 minutes of running. This week, I am running for 2 minutes, walking for 90 seconds, repeating for 7 cycles. I did my second run this morning, skipped the walking between 6 and 7th cycle, in order to run for 4 consecutive minutes! Who knew?
2. There is a post run elation that sets in after running. My brain feels more clear, my mind organizes thoughts better. I notice the world around me, changes in terrain, the sun’s rays catching the tops of trees as it rises across the land and my arms swinging at my sides.
3. My body responds to running differently at the beginning or ending of my run. During my first 2 minutes, my body finds it’s way into a rhythm, oxygen makes its way to the muscles and the joints begin to free up. The second 2 minutes my knee is stiff, tight and somewhat painful. Once I get into the third or fourth 2 minute runs, my body is flowing freely, I feel my arms pumping and notice it is possible to swing my arms and feel as if I am flying! That last 4 minutes this morning felt fluid, energizing and grounding. The land moved beneath my feet with each step. Maybe I was moving the Earth, rather than pushing off the Earth into the sky?
4. Big thoughts come as I settle into a pace with my body. My mind became something that I choose to witness while I am running. Ah… there is a thought about A-B-C, and another about D-E-F. With my legs moving underneath my body, arms pumping at my sides, I let go of the mind and allowed the sensations of moving to be a focus and from that place of moving, thoughts scrolled through effortlessly.
5. There is excitement in me that I might actually be able to run! It feels good to run. In a short time I can feel my body gaining strength, the ability to process Oxygen more quickly and even the energy to keep running ever other day. In less than two weeks, I can feel my body wanting to run on my “rest day.”
My kids have inspired me to get running and I hope one day to run alongside them. It is not a race. One day, one step at a time. For now, I’m grateful to have a body that is willing to try running!
In Peace with Gratitude and Love,