I am starting to think I should rename Walking on Wednesday - I have not been very good at actually posting on Wednesdays. Plus, I am running now for most of the route. So maybe Running on Thursday?
I measured my route last week, before the Jingle Bell run (my first public run!) and found the distance was 2 miles. So this is now my standard workout, and I am concentrating on keeping it as much 'run' as I can.
Yesterday (Thursday), I noticed that the run didn't hurt as much as it had the previous 3 days. The 5K run did have it moments of pain, so I treated myself with a day off Sunday. Then on Monday I went for my normal run, or so I thought, but when I actually ran it was not smooth, it was HARD! I ended up walking most of the time. Tuesday, a little better, but still much walking. Wednesday, I ran almost the whole time, but it was not easy. At my turnaround spot in the middle of the run, I gladly walked a wee bit until I could catch my breath. Then I took up to a run again, but it hurt, and all I longed for was to be done.
I was getting worried that my one public race would be the end of this running thing for me. Did I really want to run? Did I really need to push myself that much? It was hard, and 'walking is good for you too', I reasoned.
I nearly accepted this, too. Thursday, I had no expectations of running. I started with a brisk walk, down my long driveway and up that first doozy of a hill. At the top of the hill, I felt different. I ran, and it felt natural. 'Okay', I thought, 'run then!' I ran to the turnaround, and was surprised that I didn't need the walk at that point, I kept running. I made it all the way to my driveway running. There was even a sprint at the end there, thanks to LadyJ (my Cocker Spaniel) chasing a squirrel I wasn't prepared for. (Running suddenly fast downhill is very hard to do without falling down at the end of a 2 mile run. Just sayin.)
It was walking up the driveway for my cool down that I began to really believe that I could keep running. I could train for the Shamrock Run in March, and by then I could even add the extra mile into my daily routine to make that run even better than the one I had just done.
It started raining by the time I got to the house. I stood in the rain, loving the cool wetness on my sweaty head. It felt great, I felt great. Me - who looks really goofy running (I discovered this looking at the pictures my daughter took at the race on Sat!). Me - who gave up running in middle school in favor of the pool. (I did much better on the swim team than I ever would have done on the cross country team) Me - with the bad knees that normally swell to the size of elephant legs after running. I felt great after running 2 miles, no problem!
Life is funny that way. It has a way of reminding us we can accomplish things when we put a little effort into it, and let ourselves succeed. We can do things we once thought were impossible. We can make the impossible possible.
I never thought I would want to join races at age...well at this age. I never thought my knees would let me be a runner. I just kinda fell into it really. Back when I started walking everyday, I started with no expectation other than to walk every day. It evolved into this - running and feeling great about it!
I even still have bells on my shoes, reminding me of what I can do.
See how you can surprise yourself when you just let yourself do things you never thought you could?