31 August 2012

I Run!

I can't believe I'm doing it, but I'm running! My entire life I hated running. Well... I guess I didn't hate it as a kid. I remember from the age range of about 10-12 there was this kid on my block that was really fast and I was the only one that was able to catch him (sometimes), so I know I ran at SOME point. But those runs were just short bursts anyway.

But I remember in high school, before I started, I was trying to start my high school career out right and doing extracurriculars in the preceding summer. Not only was I taking Russian and Electronics classes AHEAD of time (yes, I took summer school to get AHEAD. I am a nerd.) — I went to a technical high school that taught us drafting and electronics and we had to learn Russian — but I also decided I would try joining the track team. I had absolutely NO sports skills whatsoever. My parents never forced me to play any sports like most of my friends and I thought that was awesome (now I wish they had), so I wasn't about to join a school team where I could show off my LACK of skill. So instead I thought, "well everyone can run." Or something equally dumb. I think I went to two meets. I remember stretching beforehand and I remember we had to run around the school's grounds. I was dead so quickly. I remember feeling like I was going to throw up.

But NOW! Now I'm doing it!! A couple of months ago my friend posted on facebook that he was doing the NY Giant Run of Champions 5K that ended on the field at Giants Stadium! You got to run into the endzone!! THIS I needed to do. At first I though, "Eh, I'll just jog/mostly walk it, just so I can get to the field." But my friend suggested I try one of the couch-to-5K programs that are so popular these days. So of course I looked for an "app for that" and I found the 5K Runner (which, by the way, I HIGHLY recommend). It starts you off really slowly and in a way that is doable, doing like 4 sets of running like a minute or two followed by a minute or two walk. Which is great because at first three minutes felt awful and impossible. But by the time I got to the Giants run, I was running like 10 minutes straight, followed by a 3 minute walk and then another 5 minutes (not exactly this I'm sure, it was a few months ago)! Here's my results from that:

NY Giants Run of Champions 5K
I did it in 38 minutes!! I still can't believe it. But the best part? I haven't stopped! I decided I was going to do this thing! I've signed up for a 5K every month since then (except July). This week alone I did TWO! Last Sunday I ran the Color Run — the happiest 5K on the planet! It was amazing, you get hit with coloured powder as you run and at the end there's basically a giant rave of people dancing and throwing MORE colour at each other!

Here's me hamming it up, mostly green.
It was a great time. Then last night I did a 4-mile NYRR Back to Football Run! It was a run in Central Park to celebrate the return of football season! It was great! And I'm proud to say I didn't really walk very much at all. We stopped a couple of times at the beginning but not very long at all and from about the start of mile 3 to the end of 4 I only stopped for a few seconds to drink water. My pace was slightly slower than the Giants 5K but I definitely felt better for this one:

NYRR Back to Football Run
I still haven't technically finished the 5K program. I struggled with the 25 minute run mark, but a week or two ago I ran those 25 minutes, then added 5 more! Very soon I should be able to run a 5K without stopping! I can't wait!

Next month I'm visiting a friend in New Hampshire and I'll be doing my second Warrior Dash! It's a 5K in the mud with obstacles! I did one a couple years ago and the obstacles were fun but the running was so horrible for me. This time it should be much better. Then I've got a 5K on the boardwalk at Coney Island to raise money to help walruses in October and the Race to the Finish 5K in November (runs part of the NY Marathon course... the END part). I think for December I'll do the Jingle Bell Jog. :) Signing up for races keeps me from slacking off in between. 

Yay for running!!

PS One other app that really helped me get this running thing going, that I would be remiss not to mention, is the Zombies Run app. This app is so cool and so entertaining, I really push anyone who wants to run or who already does to check it out. It's not cheap, but it's worth it! Happy running!

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