Monday, September 10, 2012

Welcome to Marathon Mondays!

I've probably hinted at it, but have I mentioned that I am training for the California International Marathon (CIM) on December 2? My very first marathon. I've been meaning to explore the road that brought me to this decision because prior to last year, my only running experience was playing in elementary school. I never ran cross country or participated in any sports (I was a band nerd). So how did I choose to train for a marathon? Great question. A question that I even wonder about...... a lot.

It was an interesting process coming to this decision. Some of which I can't truly explain, but I am going to try. It's kind of a long story and I'm not usually much of a storyteller (that would be my husband). But my running story has become such a huge part of me that I think it's worth telling, even if it's just for me and my family. Life is full of choices and it's fascinating to look back at how some of them are made. Especially the more significant choices, like the crazy decision to run a marathon. So welcome to Marathon Mondays.

The Very Beginning

I started running last year because I wanted to lose weight. Exercise was never really an activity I enjoyed. In fact, it wasn't anything I thought about until after college (coincidentally the same time I began to struggle with excess weight). I played tag in elementary school, marched in band through high school, and rode my bike everywhere in college. But then I stopped being naturally active. And as my activity level decreased, wouldn't you know? My weight increased. I tried exercise videos, gym memberships, and sports like tennis, but nothing was quite as much fun as relaxing (and eating).

So many years later, I finally started to wake up to my life (another story all in itself). I can't pinpoint exactly when it began, but I can see some of the ripples when I look back. It feels like a "midlife awakening." I feel a bit young at age 38 to be claiming midlife, but what do you call it-- "1/3 life"? And it is by no means a "crisis." I feel awake and alive! And it's awesome! (true story)

So part of this awakening was realizing that I needed to get into shape and lose my excess weight. And I needed to try something new. Something that would stick. Why running? Well I started noticing it more. I remember reading the blogs of artists like Stacy Julian and Donna Downey, and they shared running stories. And my best friend, and trendsetter, Sally had just started running. She was using a nine week program called the Couch to 5K program (C25K). It slowly builds from running one minute at a time (taking walking breaks in between) to running 30 continuous minutes, with the ultimate goal being a 5K.

This all intrigued me, but I had avoided running in the past. I had always been too afraid to run because of the stories of injuries, ruined knees, surgeries, etc.. So what was different this time? I finally realized I should be just as afraid of being inactive and overweight. Why was I so afraid of the impact running can have on your knees, but comfortable with extra layers of fat hugging all my internal organs? So I decided to give the C25K a try.........

[To Be Continued Next Marathon Monday]

1 comment:

Michelle said...

You are a great story teller. I love hearing it