This is my life. Sometimes shown through the eye of my camera phone, and sometimes not. I'll talk running, gadgets, music, and whatever else I stumble on to

Thursday, August 07, 2008

My Running: Lessons Learned

Three days to go!

It's Thursday, and I'm not as freaked out about Sunday as I was in my previous post. In fact, I'm surprisingly calm- for now anyway. During this down time, I can't help but to reminisce about lessons learned in my training and what it's taken to get where I am now:

The 1st mile June 2007: I hadn't run in over 25 years. I put the running shoes on and went around the block. I remember it being the middle of a warm day, but I didn't make it and walked the rest of the way. I knew it was going to be a very, very long road.

Starting slow: I remember the first weeks of my training schedule back in June of 2007- Two minutes of running, three minutes of walking for a total of 30 minutes. I did this for 6 weeks before moving to one minute walks, 4 minutes running for another 4 weeks. Running for 30 minutes straight didn't come until August as I prepared for my first race.

The pain: I hurt. Badly. For nearly three straight months of actually working out instead of sitting on my ass, my whole body wasn't having it. I struggled to move forward.

I can touch my toes when I stretch!!: As silly as it sounds, this was HUGE for me. I started a very strict stretching regiment early on to get my flexibility back. I credit it for keeping me free of serious injury. I do my stretching routine religiously these days.

The knees, oh my poor knees:
Since most of my early training days were spent on the treadmill, I blame it for two of my more serious injuries that kept me off of running for weeks. The solution? Raise the incline 2% to simulate road running. Ta da! I still prefer running on pavement these days.

My arms, lower back, and shoulders are constantly sore after a good run:
Winter brought on the strength training to work for a solid core and upper body that would support me during my longer runs later on. I don't think I could have gotten through two hours of straight running without this. My strength training regiment is now a regular part of my life three times a week.

The road races:
My first ever 5K race was one of my more memorable experiences. I even surprised myself with a decent finish time. The races keep me motivated, and love to run them even if I never win a medal.

Keeping Sane: The year 2007 was very rough on me emotionally in my personal life. Sinking into a depression was a constant danger, as were sleepless nights. Just as music saved me many years ago, running saved me again.

Live a healthy lifestyle: No more fast food, cut the soda pop from the diet, milk does a body good, take a daily vitamin, free from serious illness, drink loads of water daily, cut way down on the alcohol, breakfast/lunch/dinner, keep the weight stable, and sleeping like a log have all come from running.

There are tons more, but these stand out the most.

No more running until Sunday except for a few warmups here and there. Just going to try and relax as much as possible!

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