Week 1 - Complete!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

I know, I know; I should be in the middle of week two by now. Don't stress me. Last night I went out and 'ran' the last workout of Week 1 (C25K).

So, onward and upward to Week 2. I'm scared to even look at the length of the running intervals. So we won't talk about that.

I'm convinced I'm an ugly runner. I'm sure I have bad form. I sweat and pant and I jiggle. Really, I'm embarrassed. I can't even bring myself to take a 'before' picture. But I'm also sick of being like this so I will get through the emotional dramatics and I will run.

Let's instead talk about how proud I am of myself. You'd think I might be proud of the actual workout part. And I am, sort of. However, I am even more proud of the fact that I am getting past my perfectionist hang-ups and getting through to the important bit of actually getting some exercise.

Last Friday should have been workout #3. It poured all day. There was a quick break in the evening - just in time for The Boy Child's soccer game. They ended up calling the game at half time since it had been pouring since kickoff and the field was now flooded. But I digress. There was no opportunity for a 'run'.

Late Friday night I was getting a bit stressed about being off schedule. How am I supposed to stick with something if the schedule is not working out?! How am I supposed to maintain the benefits of the previous workout if too much time lapses until the next workout?! Why not just throw in the towel and wait for a better/easier/<insert excuse-worthy adjective here> exercise alternative? Why not wait for the perfect time, the best weather? Why not get X, Y and Z out of the way before starting?

Because that is the method I've been using for the past ten years and it's just not working out for me anymore.

So, I had all weekend to psych myself up for continuing with my workout schedule first thing Monday morning. Yeah, right. Monday was a write off. I didn't feel 100% and I was exhausted. I should just give up the whole idea and get over it now. I don't stick with anything. My plans and visions of grandeur just never work out.

Tuesday rolled around and I gave myself a deadline: by bedtime, I had to have fit in my workout. This was ridiculous. I know very well that nothing but actually getting off my ass and doing it is going to work. There will be no suddenly available time, no miraculous decrease in BMI, no surge of endless energy. Things are going to continue to be busy. It's going to rain. Schedules will suddenly change. I won't feel well. I'll make dinner late. I'll spend too much time on the computer. The house will never be clean enough; the kids never settled enough. I'll not have time...but really, there will be time. So just go ahead and do the stupid running already.

Goodness knows why I have these dialogues with myself. What do I really have to do in a day that prevents me from taking a 1/2 hour exercise break? Nothing! If something isn't working out perfectly, I throw in the towel.

But this time I didn't. At 8:45 last night, I went and 'ran'. Once I climbed Mt. GetOutTheDoorAndJustDoIt, I was alright.

My first running interval landed when I was in front of a parking lot full of people. I paused my iPod and continued my brisk walking pace to a more run-worthy place. The world didn't fall apart because things hadn't gone perfectly! (I'm certain it would have fallen apart if I'd been seen running by actual real-life people.)

During my third running interval, I somehow managed to skip ahead to the next song. Damn. I took some time - while continuing my brisk walking pace - found the podcast again (it's a Shuffle, no screen), scanned ahead a bit and continued with the workout. I didn't even know if I'd found the correct spot. And what do you know, the world didn't fall apart because things hadn't gone perfectly. Again! In the end, I may have even done too many running intervals. Can you imagine?!

The carnage continued: my knees hurt. So I ran on the soccer pitches for a while. My dog took off after a squirrel, stopped to roll in something and was a general pain. I let her leash out and pretty soon, she was following me. The kids didn't get to be 'on time'. Who cares? It's summertime!

So, against all usual personal odds, some exercise was had. I'm cautiously optimistic. Tomorrow I will begin Week 2. Perhaps in addition to the exercise I hope to achieve this summer, I'll also learn a thing or two and be able to apply it to other areas of my life. Goodness knows I'll have some time to consider those and other deep thoughts while I'm out trying not to be seen so that when I am seen, I'm not embarrassed to have been seen exercising.

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