Last month I wrote a post about how I’d started running. The first few runs were horrendous. I had no idea what I was doing.
Well it’s been 6 weeks to the day since I’ve started. Despite one set back with a knee injury, I’ve been running at least once a week. I can still say with absolute conviction that it terrifies me and I still have to build myself up to getting out the front door.
BUT something has happened. I’m not enjoying it yet, but I can feel my body getting used to it, or perhaps resigned to it. I can run further than I did on week one without having to stop and walk.
Thinking about it some more, here’s why running could be the thing for me:
1. It’s Free. There’s no expensive payments to a class that I end up not going to or even more expensive payments to a gym that I see even less. There’s no expensive equipment needed. All that’s required is some trainers (I found mine at the back of my cupboard from when I last joined the gym in 2010) and some suitable clothes. My running gear was bought for me as a Christmas present, but you could just as easily run in joggers or leggings.
2. Time to Myself. I love my kids, but they are hard work and so any break that I get from them is something of a treat. Even if it is to run round the block. For half an hour, I can savour time on my own usually thinking through everything going on in my head enjoying the peace of the countryside without having to referee any arguments about which colour fork each daughter is having for their tea.
3. It Fits in Flexibly. For ages I was looking for a yoga class that suited my daily routine. But every class I could find was either mid-morning or 9 o’clock at night. Now I can run whenever I want. Normally this means running at the weekend when the husband can have the kids, but if I get a quiet week with work, I can run whilst the kids are at school / pre-school.
4. I Can Go at My Own Pace. Yes, even if it means walking. I’ve always felt a bit intimidated by gyms and even the thought of joining a class is bit of a worry as I’d probably be the dunce of the group. Running means I can go at my own pace and I don’t have to worry about holding anyone else back.
5. Feel Great. Once I’ve got back to the house, slumped into a chair, regained control of my breathing and had a drink of water, I do eventually feel good. It always feels like another mini win, another little achievement that I have actually completed another run. I’ve actually got off my arse and done some exercise. Also if I get out first thing in the day, it seems to set me up for the rest of the day; I feel like I can tackle anything.
6. Fresh Air. There’s something good about exercising out in the fresh air rather than being stuck inside a sweaty box of a room. A couple of weeks ago I was out running on a beautiful, bright, cold day. The sun was coming up over the fields and it looked stunning. At the moment, I am still running the same route, but the thought of being able to eventually change routes and see some different places inspires me to keep going.
7. Motivation to Run Quicker. It’s normally about half way through my route that I feel like death and want to stop. To keep going, I remind myself that the sooner I get back home the sooner it will all be over. I can’t yet make it the whole way without walking, but this is my aim.
I’ve never thought of myself as a runner, and I still don’t. It has always scared me and still does. But I’m getting some regular exercise and as these 7 reasons show why, it is a little bit rewarding.
I just need to stick with it and keep on running.
Here’s to the next 6 weeks and beyond!