So, I mentioned a few weeks ago that I’d taken up with the Couch to 5K program again. I’ve been doing it after work with two of my friends who are also co-workers, and we started in early November. Last time I tried this, in the spring, I gave up after week 4, day 1. Last night, we completed week 4, day 1 (take 2 for me). So I’m officially as far as I was last time, but unlike then, I have no plans to quit this time. When we finish week 4, day 2 later this week, we’ll be a bit over halfway through the 9-week program. I actually quite enjoy the time with my friends, even if I don’t always enjoy the running. We sort of take turns being the cheerleaders, not letting the others get away with copping out (unless someone is truly sick or something – obviously, then a person must be excused).
Will we make it to the end? Will I be able to run a 5K by the time we finish the program in early to mid-January? Only time will tell. But I don’t even want to quit right now, and by this point in the program last time, I was well over it and forcing myself to do it…not as regularly as I was supposed to, either. Also, I had persistent pain in one knee by this time in the program the last time I did it, and I have not had any knee pain this time. I wonder if walking regularly all summer and fall strengthened the muscles around my knee and that has helped?
And there are other things that make me think I might stick with it this time. First, with these girls, I’ve run the fastest run pace I’ve ever achieved, 11:46 minutes per mile – not fast by any means, but I’m a lifelong chubby girl who’s rarely been regularly active – that’s fast for me! We don’t do that every time, but we’ve run sub-12-minute miles 4 or 5 times now, including once by myself, without anyone else for me to keep pace with, which makes me happy. Second, I actually ran on Thanksgiving day. ON A HOLIDAY, PEOPLE. I’ve never done such a thing. I’ve never intentionally run on a holiday or on vacation or while out of town. This was a first – I’m pretty proud of it. Finally, we’re planning to sign up for a late January or early February 5K together. I’ve never run an entire 5K. I’ve run part, walked part, but I’ve never run a whole thing. Hopefully signing up for a race will get us all to stay on target through the end of January, at least, and maybe by then it will be a habit.
I’ve never thought of myself as a runner, but damn it, apparently I am a beginning runner again now. I suppose that’s a good thing.