Friday, November 19, 2010


I've been an anti-runner all my life.

It started in high school, when running a mile was mandatory in PE. I was in pretty good overall shape, but running just made every single thing in my body hurt.

As years went by, I remained an avid anti-runner. Many things contributed to my attitude:

-why run, when there are so many other exercises that are more fun
-running is boring, and hurts every part of my body
-I married an anti-runner (who also avidly believes in the motto: why run, when you can ride a bike?)
-And probably the most important thing that has held be back from even trying, is that little voice in the back of my mind telling me: you can't do it. It's too hard.

Sure, I have read other people's blogs who say thing like; if I can do it, anybody can do it. I called their bull. Sure, they can, but not me! I even tried to run a few times, only to prove to myself running really isn't for me.

Something changed a few weeks ago. My cousin Catherine (well, she's actually Joe's cousin, but that the same difference) came over for a bike ride. We were all geared up and ready to go, when a thunder storm rolled in, and tornado watches were going off all over town. Plus it started raining. Not wanting to give up our opportunity for a workout, she got it in her mind to drag me out running. I resisted. The voice in my head came back. But reluctantly I let her convince me.

We started down the street, and when the rain picked up, I was hopeful we'd turn back. But Catherine had her mind set on taking me down a path along the creek. As we were making progress, and I was surprisingly okay physically, the little voice turned up the volume. Catherine was an amazing coach, pushing me, encouraging me, and not letting me stop. And a miracle happened. I did in fact survive. Sure, I was sore , and slow, and out of breath... .but I was alive!

The Catherine made a prophecy: now you know you can do it, and you WILL do it again. Now, just to make sure we're all on the same page here: we're talking about 2.73 miles. No marathon by a long way, but longer than I had ever run in my entire life. A week later, I did the same run. This time I was without my coach. But I now had the desire to prove to myself that I really COULD do it. Winter rode her bike along side, to keep me company. And on the uphill home stretch the mail man was going down the same street, so he motivated me to go faster and keep up.

Getting a little bored with the same path, I decided to go to a new location the next Saturday. Winter and I headed out again, this time to the Arbor Hills Nature Preserve. We went for the mountain biking, and after 1 loop of that, Winter was too tired to do it again. So instead, I ran on the paved path, while she followed. I'm not sure how long this run was, but probably about the same as the first 2.

Last week I took my friend Sandra the opposite way along the creek, and discovered just how close we live to the huge Russell Creek Park. Since it was her first time running, I couldn't get a feel for how far or fast was going. So the very next day, I attempted the 4 mile loop all around the park. The biggest mistake I made: bringing Winter and Ginger on their bikes, while it was 50 degrees outside, and they didn't have the appropriate clothing. Poor Ginger was crying, and Winter wasn't in a much better mood. We had to keep stopping for this reason or the other.

This morning I wanted to attempt the 4 mile loop again, and see how fast I could do it. AGain.... nothing impressive in most people's books, but for me it was allright. I did the 3.9 miles in 44 minutes. That's an 11 minute mile. Pretty sucky... but I did it. And I can only get faster from here. This last month's running experiment has opened my eyes, to the possibility that running might not be evil. It's fun to set goals, and try to better them. It's also fun to accomplish thing I never thought possible. Shoot, some time in the future, I might even decide to attempt a half marathon or something. Although, not too soo in the near future!


Farmer Joe said...

Yes, running IS evil

Maddy S said...

I was hoping you'd say running still sucks! I am the same way. I always liked and was good at short runs but hated the on and on running. I am glad you did well and got yourself a new challenge.

Wendy said...

Yeah babey! I'm proud of you for trying! and sticking with it! I decided the other day I needed to run again and so I started running with my neighbor two times a week. It's so much easier when someone else is there because the little voice in your head can't be heard or paid attention to! I have no idea how far we run but not as far as 4 mils that's fr sure.(altough this whole broken bones business has prevented us from running lately) And you can already do a 5k! pretty impressive!

Catherine M. said...

Jessica is a rock star.

Love you!

Share buttons