July 12, 2014

pumped up kicks

Hello friends! It has been awhile since I've had a moment to write, but the summer busy-ness has definitely kicked into high gear.
Earlier this week, I signed up with a running group and started training for a half marathon. It's 21 kms, which isn't groundbreaking, and doesn't make me an "extreme" athlete by any stretch. But I needed the discipline. My 5 kms jogs done intermittently were not doing a whole lot. I found that ever since I had a baby, I put on weight in areas I didn't even know were things: lower back love handles?!? What is that?
Now, please don't get me wrong, I'm not someone who advocates that we all need to be size 4 sticks. Not by any stretch. But I had done a half marathon before, and remember being in the best shape of my life from that training. I missed that feeling of being committed to a challenging program that pushed me out of my comfort zone and had a specific goal to train for: running a race.
I started to notice changes in myself that also led to this decision - I didn't enjoy clothes anymore - I wasn't buying things I wanted, I was buying things that worked more to camouflage problem zones.  If I was shopping and came across the word "fitted" it would send me running for the hills. I was also avoiding being in photos and would groan whenever I saw any photos of myself. I would love to have some family photos, but so often, I just have photos framed of my hubby and daughter.  So, I teamed up with one of my friends, and signed up through the running room for one of their training clinics. I have to tell you, it was one of the best decisions I've made in a long time. It's only been a week, but I've already logged in three good runs, including a 7.5 km one today in the blazing sun. I felt more energized at work this week. I feel like it's boosted my confidence, that I'm walking taller. And best of all, it's definitely given me a great endorphin high.

It's funny, the night of my first run, my hubby said, "they'll take it easy on you for your first run. Don't worry about packing water." We set out, what was supposed to be a 4 km intro run. 4 km? Cake walk. My hubby was right, I don't need any stinkin water.
But as we began, it was about 30 degrees out, which felt like running through a Hawaiian volcano in two layers of velour tracksuits. Sticky and uncomfortable. We were running and the first thing I noticed is that everyone had on water belts: professional looking of army artillery capacity, loaded with mini water bottles ready to aim at their thirsty faces at any given moment. They were confident in their running because they had like 8 water sources to grab from at any given moment. It was all I could think about. I'm pretty sure whenever I was jogging next to someone, my only topic of conversation was, "wow, that water looks good." Or, "Sure wish I brought some water." Or, "How does your water taste? Can you describe it for me?"
It became my number one fantasy. Forget Ryan Gosling, Water was seriously all I could think about. If there was a bottle of water handed to me at that moment, I would have made sweet love to it.
When we finished the run, the instructor said, "HA! I fooled you. You did 6 km, not 4!" If I wasn't so thirsty, I probably would have clocked her hydrated face.
So, running isn't always entirely fun. But, there's something to be said about having a program to stick to. If you are like me, feeling like you needed a nudge in your fitness routine, why not check out running groups, or join a cycling team, rowing team, bootcamp, dance troop, crossfit, anything that is going to make you more accountable for showing up. Tomorrow morning, we're getting up early to cheer on my hubby in a 120 km cycling race. He is definitely an inspiration for me to push myself further.
Happy fitness training friends!!

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