Making up ground

I went “running” for the first time since early May. It’s not my fault I stopped running, and I offer no apologies to myself or to the Fitness Judges, who should understand that parental duties and a child in need had to take priority over sneakers and an iPod.

Remember, though, that last September I was able to run my first 5K. I think this time I made it about .4K before I had to take my first walking break. My only consolation is that this time my muscles hurt before I ran out of breath (and yes, I’m using the inhaler. But I was still gasping.)

Basically, you can work for eighteen months at running, and then in three months you can be forced back to square zero. Well, I can. That’s my takeaway.

I know John Bingham writes that running requires not only courage to start, but also courage to start over. And to be honest, I’m not really starting at square zero because this time, I’m starting out with a good pair of sneakers (so I won’t injure myself right out of the gate) and the running wardrobe/equpiment I can reasonably expect to need.

Also, I know I can do it. Eventually.

That’s not much help now, though, when most of my “runs” are “walks,” and I miss the ground I lost.


  1. seschoen

    I’ve been through the first 6 weeks more than I care to count. Slow and steady and trust the program, even if it seems ridiculously slow. I just graduated from jog 5 houses walk 10, to jog 6 walk 10, and won’t increase it to 7/10 for another week. (Just counted. 150 houses, so in 3 years I’ll actually jog the entire distance!) Another week and I’ll pass my usual 6 week dropout point.

    1. philangelus

      I’m not timing or tracking distance this time. I run until I have to stop, and then I walk until I feel I can breathe again. Numbers and metrics tend to hang me up and I overanalyze. 🙁

  2. Pat

    You can do it. By being able to run at all, you’re ahead of those of us whose joints will not allow running and are extremely dubious even about walking; muscles and wind can be eased into it, but arthritic joints just get worse!

    You’re also ahead of someone starting for the first time, because you know what to expect, what worked last time, and what will be better this time.

  3. Illya

    I have great faith in you….I’m the one in the corner shouting to you to go on. You have conquered difficulties before and you will again….prayers and thoughts

  4. seschoen

    I’m a numbers person, and a Rebel. I like to have a plan, and I rebel by not making it exact. Houses, rather than metres or stopwatch. I don’t trust my feel for my body, in both directions, to just run until I have to stop. I’ll overdo it and burn out, or worry that I’m not increasing fast enough. Counting houses (very roughly, today my final count was 3 houses different than the last one) is the current best balance. Then I look back to see how I felt. If there were a reliable, comfortable, and cheap heart rate monitor I’d probably use it and a published program. Couch to 5 k didn’t work for me since I had to remember how long for each stage. The timer app for it didn’t work if I didn’t hear the beep. I didn’t like the music for the one that had different music for each stage. And the time to make a custom one, different each week, didn’t make sense. Counting houses is working and makes me smile, so it wins. And if I mis-count or stop to talk, the Rebel in me is happy.

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