I just signed up for 10k and I’m starting to panic because the race is in 12 days.
So I started telling everyone I was running a 10k in hopes that I would then actually go through with it. My friend who is a physical therapist responded to my boasts “I love you runners, you all keep me in business.” Is there that much injury? I haven’t had more than just knee pain. So I researched running injuries and immediately had over 8 types of injuries to pick from. 65-85% of all runners suffer injuries. I doubt most sports have 85% of their athletes on the bench. Running is the one sport that people do with full gusto without any training or coaching. We just walk out our doors and start running.
I caught the running bug because I was desperate to lose the most stubborn of all fat, the stick to your gut and butt flab otherwise known as -third child baby fat. (Can I just mention real quick that my third baby weighed 12 pounds) It wasn’t coming off and running is the only activity I know that leaves you so beaten down and exhausted that I figured it had to do the trick. I don’t know if it’s all the numbers involved- run a 5k in 26:50- or just the anguish it causes, but in the end you feel so accomplished, like you are a real athlete!
After running about 10 miles a week and participating in six 5k’s this summer, I lost 22 lbs! However, that was August and now I am staring at January and 9 inches of snow on the ground. I won’t exactly be feeling the wind in my hair and the sun on my back as I trudge on a treadmill. I can’t stand running on the treadmill and so I haven’t run a step in over 3 months.
I started reading “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougal. If you like to run even a little bit, I highly recommend this book. It explains the phenomena of running, why some can run for hundreds of miles and others are sore after only two. It also was what I needed to get my mojo back, lace up those Asics gels, squeeze into that jog bra and head for the monotonous churning of the treadmill. This time around I am running because I want to run, not just to lose weight but because I like it and it’s now become a part of me. I just need to keep telling myself that.
When I got to the gym (please applaud because getting myself there was ¾ the battle) it was packed which makes it even that much more intimidating if you haven’t worked out in awhile. I’m so insecure that I had to give everyone that “Stop calling me fatso in your head!” look. I stepped on the only empty treadmill and used all my magic powers to just start running. It wasn’t half as bad as I thought it would be, it actually felt good and I remembered I really do like running. Then I felt that annoying jiggling feeling– is that my butt? With all that shaking going on I think my pants were having a dance a party.
My form is so bad that I might as well start quacking because I run like a duck. I do this strange leg -kick move, leaving the insides of my ankles either bruised or muddied after each run. I focused on my form “Back straight”, I told myself, “head up, don’t fall off this thing and don’t look at your feet!” I covered up the panel counting my calories and played the “don’t look at the time” game as I focused on the 10 TV screens in front of me, danggit I got the TV with Ghost Whisperer. After watching Jennifer Love Hewitt hallucinate for the 3rd time, I started to feel a little winded, ok one peek at the clock- 6:32 minutes – that’s all! I finally did 1.5 miles in about 17 minutes- not very good but workable. Maybe.
The next morning I must have slept 44 years because I woke up feeling like I was 80. That old knee pain was back and screaming at me with each step down the stairs. And my back was so stiff. Why did I do this to myself? I have 2 friends who have both run marathons yet now they swear by Pilates and claim they have never felt so fit or strong. I needed to take a different approach.
I decided to take some nutritional advice from the book “Born to Run” and strengthen myself on the inside, apparently people who run hundreds of miles eat loads of the herb Chia and a corn meal called Pinole. So I sought out some Chia and Pinole. Chia: as in Chia Pet. As much as I’d rather have a chia for a pet than my carpet pissing dog, I opted for the $9.95 chia powder. Pinole is hard to find and some type of corn grain that acts as an anti-oxidant but since I’m not sure I have the commitment to plant my own corn field; I think I’ll skip it and buy new running shoes instead.
I’m off to the insufferable treadmill and am running up to about 3 miles again, I’m ready to push myself and keep going, even when it’s the last thing in the universe I feel like doing. I guess running is a lot like anything else in life –uumm yea this is where I have some great insight, but right now I’m just trying to sit here without my back spasming and my legs cramping up- I’ll get back to you after the big race! Wish me luck you fellow runners of the world.