Monday, April 19, 2010
Maybe I Will Be a Runner After All
Wow. Never expected I'd hear my daughter say those words. But that's just what Pippi said on Sunday as she trotted down our street, beaming: "I runnin' jus like you!" She was so proud of herself. But not nearly as proud as I was of myself.
I'm not a runner. Never have been. Never really wanted to be. But my husband tricked me into it. I'd been complaining about not getting any exercise and not having any time to get exercise, so he (being a runner himself) decided that I just hadn't given running a fair try. My response was that if I was going to become a runner, I'd need some cool gear -- that Sony Walkman collecting dust in the closet just wasn't proper motivation. Then, bam. he called my bluff -- iPod for my birthday -- and suddenly I had to follow through.
After consulting one of my BFFs from high school (who I would have voted least-likely-to-become-a-runner right along with me but who now runs races with her husband and three boys), I decided to try out the Couch-to-5K running plan. The gist of the plan is that you start out running in short increments (60 seconds at first) and walking in between, then build up to longer running stretches over nine weeks until you can run for 30 minutes (or 3 miles).
As of yesterday, I'm on Day 2 of Week 3. Ahem. My birthday was in December. [Short pause while you count the number of weeks between December and April.] So yeah, I started, then it got too cold, so I started over, then got sick, started over, got busy, blah blah blah. But I keep trying, starting over at Week 2. And as of yesterday, I'm father along on the plan than I've ever been -- and I've probably run more cumulative minutes in the past five months than I did in the past five years added together. So it's small, but it's still progress.
I'm running to be healthy. And I'm running to be thin. And, let's be honest, I'm running to show my husband that I can meet his challenge (thanks for knowing me so well, my love). But I realized on Sunday that I'm also doing it so that my daughter (and my son) will see running and exercise and (dare I say) athleticism as a regular part of being a girl.
I'm still not sure I'll ever be a capital-R Runner -- I'm not training for an actual race or dreaming of a marathon or anything. But seeing Junius and Pippi hopping up and down in the driveway to cheer me on as I make my loop past the house is all the motivation I need to keep on running.