I haven’t always been a runner. Actually, I went to occupation therapy for many years when I was younger as my coordination was so terrible. I played some sports in middle and high school, but I was never great at them. Plus, I always played sports like volleyball and field hockey (goalie) where I didn’t have to run far at all. So, the idea of running was pretty foreign to me.
A few years back a friend’s dad was very sick with melanoma. She wanted to do something to raise money for melanoma and for her dad. So, she asked me to run the Miles for Melanoma 5K in Wilmington, DE. I couldn’t not do this in support of her and her father, so I agreed. Unfortunately Big Don died before we could run the 5K, but we both still trained to do the race.
So, in an effort to learn to run (and yes, I needed to learn HOW to run) I decided to try the Couch to 5K program. The program starts with you doing a 5 minute walk warm up then alternating between 60 seconds running and 90 seconds walking. You do three workouts a week for a total of nine weeks and work up to running for a full 90 minutes. I ended up getting a little nervous during week four and repeated it. That’s the beauty of the C25K workout. You can repeat as necessary. I also felt that I wanted some music to accompany my runs, so I downloaded a podcast that had music and the cues for when I needed to change the walk/run. I listened to Suz, but I also downloaded the podcasts from DJ Beatsmith. Both now have podcasts for 10Ks as well, which is great.
In an effort to push myself a bit farther, I signed up with some lab mates to run the Cherry Blossom 10 miler in April of 2010.
This was to be my farthest race ever. I didn’t train with any of them, though I went with two to the NCR trail in March of that year to get in a long run (found out that I don’t like the NCR trail) and got my first introduction to Back On My Feet. I finished and was super happy/proud of myself for doing so. But, I wanted to push myself just a bit farther, so I decided to sign up for the Baltimore Running Festival’s half marathon. Again, I finished, but I ran alone, and I ended up hurting myself a bit during the training.
So, I joined Back On My Feet (BoMF) just before the Running Festival and had my first run not long after. Had I not joined BoMF I KNOW I wouldn’t have continued running. More about this organization and it’s impact on me in the next posting…