Couch to 5k – Week 5, Day 3

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My around the lake running track.

This was the day I had been dreading for a while now. The first non-stop 20 minute run of the program. And how did it go, you may ask?

Nailed it! 😀

I surprised myself with this one. When I started this in August I was unsure if I would ever get to running for 5 minutes at a time, let alone twenty. I may be able to finish this thing after all.

Anybody else doing Couch to 5k? Would love to hear how you’re getting on wherever in the program you are.

 

 

Couch to 5k – Week 2, Day 1

celebration

So as you can likely tell from the title, today was the first day of week two of the Couch to 5k program for me. This week ramps up the running/jogging interval to 90 seconds followed by two minutes of walking. Real runners will giggle at having to run for only a minute and a half at a time but for someone who’s never run before I feel pretty damn pleased with myself that I got through it. And got through it without lumbering along at a snail’s pace and taking extra breaks. Go me.

If you’re doing Couch to 5k I’d love to hear how you’ve been getting along.

Couch to 5K – Day 1

I run effortlessly, the wind cooling my face and blowing my ponytail playfully behind me. My legs never tire as my feet pound the ground beneath me. A sense of freedom and adventure come over me as I realize I could do this for hours.

In my dreams that is.

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For as long as I can remember I’ve had dreams of running. Running along roads illuminated by streetlights at dusk and the middle of the night with nobody else around. Running up and down paths in the woods with only the trees to keep me company. The dreams can be so realistic that I often spend the couple of minutes right after waking up wondering if this is indeed something I do in real life. The running I do in my dreams requires no effort, my breathing never gets hard, my muscles never ache and demand me to slow down, and nary a drop of sweat glistens on my brow.

The reality, it turns out, is a tiny bit different.

Today, many months after I had planned on starting, I took my first tentative steps to running in my actual, real life. Me. Running. Outside. For more than the few seconds it takes to catch a bus or cross a street.

I put on my running shoes, started up the Couch to 5K program and hoped for the best.

And it was pretty alright.

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My running pants, with what I like to think of as racing stripes.

I only ran for a total of 8 minutes during the 30 or so minutes I was out there but it didn’t feel as bad as I feared it would. It actually felt kind of good. Weird, I know.

 

Back on Track

This past weekend I was reminded how easy it is to fall back into bad habits. It started on Saturday with a birthday gathering where it would of course be rude to turn down the offer of a slice of cake and because there were two different cakes on the table I had to sample both. To be fair both slices were more sliver-like than I would have gone for in the past but still.

Then dinner time rolls around and how can you resist some crusty garlic bread to go with the soup? You can’t.

Well, I couldn’t.

Oh and look, there’s a bag of potato chips in the kitchen. Let’s have a small bowl of that while we’re browsing the internet.

Add to all this that I had skipped two Insanity workouts that I had told myself I would catch up on and I was feeling like I had let myself down as I headed to bed Saturday night.

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My unused workout/yoga mats… silently judging me…

Luckily a new day brought a new resolve.

I made better food choices all day and by Sunday night I had done both the workouts I had skipped earlier that week. I spent over an hour sweating, squatting, planking and being told to Dig Deeper! and though I felt exhausted by the end of it I also felt like I was back in the groove.

I think it’s important to remember that a little wobble in your day or your week doesn’t have to signal the end of all the hard work you’ve put in up to that point. In the grand scheme of things one day will not affect your overall journey if you recognize it and make an effort to get back on track.

And because I’m not about to give up cake and chocolate and all the other good stuff, I’m looking for ways to make my favourite not-so-great-nutritionally-speaking treats a bit healthier.

If you have any suggestions for healthy substitutes please let me know in the comments!