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For the past four weeks I’ve been training for a 10K race. Sure, I’ve completed three half marathons by alternating jogging with walking, and I walked a full marathon, but the longest I’ve ever actually jogged without stopping is 3.1 miles. I’ve done that several times, for 5K races. So my next goal is to actually run an entire 10K without stopping.
I’ve never felt like a runner before. Until today I felt like a walker who occasionally runs. I felt like a bit of a fraud.
Training during the week has been going well. There’s a short run (2 miles) and a medium run (3 miles). Plus cross-training, which for me means walking, biking, or swimming. I’ve done most of those. But those Sunday long runs…I’ve been completely blowing them off. I did the first couple, and then…not so much.
It took me until this week to realize that having my long run on Sunday – or Saturday – just doesn’t fit my life. During the week, the kids are at school and my husband is at work. I can get those workouts in around my own schedule. But weekends? Family time. Lazy time. Couch time.
I have a much harder time leaving the house to exercise when everybody else is home. So this week I decided to switch my long run to Monday.
I didn’t do it.
Tuesday I got closer. I woke up and immediately put on my running clothes.
And I wore them all day, without actually running.
I even brought my workout headphones and a water bottle to my son’s Tae Kwon Do practice, thinking that those 75 minutes waiting for him would be perfect for running five miles.
Nope, never got out of the car.
So this morning, I just did it. Left the house with my daughter, kissed her goodbye at school, and set off jogging.
Maybe it was because I always feel more energized earlier in the day. Maybe it was because I’d spent the previous day carbo-loading (it had nothing to do with running; I spend most days carbo-loading). Or maybe it was the extra kick in the butt I was giving myself for skipping all of those long runs. But whatever the reason, this morning I had the best jog of my life.
I didn’t set out to jog the entire five miles. I figured I’d have to walk some of it. The first two miles went by pretty easily. As I put mile three behind me I made a mental note that I was now running farther than I ever had before – uncharted territory. And I wasn’t exhausted. I made myself keep going, just to see if I could.
The last mile was a little harder than the other four – I had to focus a bit more on not tripping. But I finished, and in a decent time too! (I’m pretty slow – anything under a 13-minute-mile I consider good.)
And the best part was, I didn’t feel totally spent. I didn’t feel like was going to fall over. If I’d had to, I really think I could have done another 1.2 miles this morning and finished a 10K.
I do wish I’d been more consistent with the training; maybe I’d be faster. But it was still about five times more training sessions than I’ve ever done before a race, so I’m getting better. Maybe – just maybe – I’ll actually follow my Princess Half Marathon training this time.
My 10K is on the 19th in Sleepy Hollow. I can’t wait!
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