Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The New Runner

Can you runners out there remember when you first started to run? When you first made that decision that you were going to run a race or wanted to get healthier or even just too loose a few pounds. Can you picture that very first run?

I just started running two years ago. At that time I decided to run a 5k with some people from work, you can read that story here. I can still remember that first run, when I walked out my front door and took off for the first time on my journey to becoming a runner. About 3 minutes later that dream was starting to fade in the cloud of my total and utter exhaustion. I could no longer breath, my legs felt like they were going to fall off, and my heart rate was through the roof. I thought to myself, you idiot what were you thinking, you are NOT a runner, you CAN NOT run. But me being me, and of course the load of crap I just got done spewing to everyone at work about how I was going to kick their butts, kept me going. After a few weeks I finally was able to run for a mile, granted I still felt like I was going to die but I did it. Then a few weeks later I made it to two, and go figure that first mile was not so hard, it was still hard I just no longer felt like I was going to fall down and die right on the spot. Now today I can go out and run several miles nonstop and actually feel like I want to keep going. I no longer feel like I am going to die, I no longer tell myself that I am NOT a runner, I am very proud to say that in fact I am a runner.

My sister is on this journey now. She has wanted to pick up running for a couple years now and has given up then tried again a few times. You see my sister is a smoker (no bashing people, I smoked for 15 years and it is HARD to quit, I should know), so as much as I felt like I was going to die she is feeling it worse. I can remember when she first started with the C25K program. She got through that first week of run for 60 seconds walk for 90 seconds. Then week two came along and she had to run for 90 seconds and well she could not do it. She gave it a go for a little then quite figuring that running was just not for her. A few months went by then she tried again, not so much with the C25k this time as she just would go out and run till she could not anymore then walk the rest of the way. I always remember our conversations when she would call me and tell me how far she ran, she would always be so excited when she would get a little farther than the time before.

For her birthday last year we got her a Garmin 305. This is one of the best gadgets for runners; it tells you the pace you are running, the time you have been running, and the distance you have run. Oh it does a lot more too but that is a post all on its own. So when my mom and I got her this we thought it would help to encourage her to run more. Well we were right; she started running a lot more. And she started getting more excited about it. My sister has now signed up to run the Disney Royal Family 5k with me; it is the day before the Disney Princess ½ Marathon on March 7th. Laura (my sister) decided she wanted to kick some 5k butt and has signed up with a running group called the Miami Runners Club. Last week at the group’s beginner’s class my sister who could not run for 90 seconds ran 3 miles without walking. I cannot even begin to tell you all how proud I am of her, my heart just swells with pride and love when I think about all she has accomplished. She has never given up, sure she may have taken a break from running but she always came back to it and now she can run 3 miles. I would say that she is a RUNNER now, not a jogger, not a wana be, but a runner a real runner.

Running is not an easy thing to do; many who try it give up because they think they cannot do it. Well people you can! Sure it takes time to build up the muscles in your legs and build up your lung capacity and let’s not forget your heart. But come on people anything that is worth it is hard. I know not everyone will go out there and be a runner, but trust me if you have ever thought about it, you can do it, it just takes time. And if you can’t quite make those 90 seconds just remember my sister who could not do that and now she is running three. Everyone you see out there running has gone through this; it is kind of a rite of passage you can say. We all have had to push through when we thought we could not do it, and that never stops the more we want to run the farther we want to go the faster we want to go we have to push though to get there. I will tell you though it is all worth it when you finally get to where you want to be and know that you worked so hard to get there, the pride you feel in yourself is greater than any of the pain you went through to get there.

Now get out there and run people!!!

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