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I can run like the wind blows.

October 20, 2007

So not the truth, but it’s a nice goal to strive for!

I did the first day of the Couch to 5k running program yesterday. I’ve been considering the possibility of doing the program for quite some time now, but, honestly, it’s always scared me to death.

The program is designed to take you from sitting on the couch to running a 5k. No walking in that 5k – real running.

There are three workouts per week, and it’s designed to take eight weeks. If weeks are difficult, you repeat them.

This week’s workouts start with a five-minute walk. Then you run for 60 seconds, walk for 90 seconds, repeating those intervals for 20 minutes. It breaks down to eight 60-second runs and eight 90-second walks. Then there’s a five-minute cool-down.

I cannot tell you the last time I ran eight whole minutes in one day. Regardless of the walks in between, it was a monumental accomplishment.

I was worried about two things: my knees and breathing. I remember the days in gym class when we were preparing to run the mile. Those days of running always made my knees hurt and turned them into little fireballs in the middle of my legs. Not pleasant. As for the breathing, that’s also been a forever problem with running for me. I don’t know if I just don’t breathe right when I run or what, but it hurts my lungs. Like, real hurt.

Neither of those things bothered me yesterday, though. I did get a cramp, but I remembered reading somewhere to breathe in for six seconds and then out for six seconds to help cramping. I did this a few times and was fine.

What finally motivated me to do the program’s first workout was a lot of built-up frustration. I was in a decently bad mood yesterday, and I knew I had to do something (and not gorge myself in ice cream or go on a marathon shopping spree) to help. A walk didn’t sound like enough. A run? Now that sounded like what I needed. So I went.

And when I finished (because I honestly didn’t even think I would), I decided I’ll have to give the second day a shot. Hell, if I can do one day of it, surely I can do one more. That’s the goal for now. Just one more day of the program.

Maybe I’ll morph into a runner. Maybe I’ll decide this running business isn’t for me. Who knows? As of now, though, I’m just testing the waters. Exercise and I have always had commitment issues, so I’m just taking this one step at a time.

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