I am ready to start running again. And the warmer days are cooperating by melting the snow and ice from the sidewalks and pathways.
If you have been reading this blog for some time, you may remember that I ran my first ever 5K in September. After a 25-year hiatus from running of any kind.
I was overjoyed to achieve my goal of finishing the run!
I injured a muscle badly during the race. And I still couldn’t run several weeks later.
Which made me feel very frustrated. Because by that point I was pretty much addicted to running.
The weeks went by and then it was October and October found me withdrawing to the indoors.
Winter arrived early and you likely can guess the rest.
As Jeremy pointed out, instead of going from Couch to 5K (the program I used for my training last year and which I HIGHLY recommend), I have gone from 5K to Couch this winter.
He’s right though.
Add to this a new client contract which is bringing my work hours to more than full time, and here I sit.
But I have all along planned to do another 5K.
In fact, I am so determined that I have already registered for it and have persuaded several friends to join me (just to make sure that I follow through.)
I’ll be running the Lifetime Fitness Torchlight 5K from the Basilica of St. Mary to Nicollet Island on Wednesday, July 20th at 7:30 pm.
In September my goal was to complete the race.
In July my goal will be to enjoy the experience more.
How do I plan to enjoy it more?
By allowing a longer lead time for training.
I’d like to be more comfortable with the distance. I’d like to lift my head up to look at the scenery, perhaps even smile at some of my friends along the way. And I’d like to not feel like I am having a heart attack at the finish line.
The Couch to 5K Training Program (an app on my ipod just waiting to rejoin me back at Week 1, Day 1) recommends 9 weeks to get from the couch to the race.
Last year I allowed myself 11 weeks between my first training day and the run. Less than two weeks before the race I got sick with a chest cold. So, I had to take a break. Then I was doing my first 40 minute run, just a few days before the 5K, and I pulled a muscle on my inner thigh. I didn’t have time to rest it properly before the actual race; hence the injury that took so long to heal.
Moral of my story: Create more breathing space in the training schedule for setbacks like these. Allow ample time to fully complete the training program. And then some more for good measure.
The Torchlight 5K is 16 weeks from today.
There’s lots of time still for my friends who don’t feel ready to start just yet.
But for me, it’s time to get started.
And I’m excited about it.
The biggest challenge for me will not be getting off the couch to go outside.
My biggest challenge will be finding 3 times per week @ 35 minutes per running session–plus 15 minutes of Yoga for Runners as warmup before each run–so that I don’t injure my aging body.
That’s 150 minutes per week (2 and 1/2 hours) that I need to somehow allocate to this intention.
Not to mention all of the additional showers I’ll have to take.
But it’s totally worth it and I’ll figure it out.
Would you like to join me? *
If I can do it, you definitely can.
Here’s what I’m offering if you say YES and sign up no later than April 8th:
1. I will give you a really cool mp3 mix of my favorite running tunes. I have great taste in music.
2. You will be entered to win a t-shirt and water bottle designed by moi.
3. We will all celebrate together at the after-party on Nicollet Island at the height of summer, just two days after my 43rd birthday.
Think about it…but don’t think too long.
You really can do this.
* So far Molly, Carrie, Sheila, Christina, Lea and Jen have signed up. Join our conversation on Facebook, here. If you can’t run, but want to register to walk the 5K, we would of course love to have you on our team. See you outside!