Day 11 – Half 22

I can’t believe I’ve already completed 11 days of running every day.  And I have kept my promise to myself, rain or shine, getting out and getting those two miles underfoot.  The distance seems pretty meager to my mind, as it has been trained to endure 4, 6, 8 mile runs as normal training lengths.  But the constancy… that is what has me spinning!

For most of my adult life, I have not been able to commit.  Yes, period.  I can’t commit to a workout routine, my favorite color (yes, I don’t know), a hairstyle, a favorite food, an apartment to live in (my friends and family are laughing right now…), or to my own passion and desires.  Now, here I am, committing, to myself, to a short (and starting to feel effective) workout plan.  No one else to report to but me, … and it’s working!

I am also preparing to commit time, effort, hard work, perseverance, and my whole heart and mind to pursuing my dreams.  Who would have thought?  One and the other, in the same year, the same month!

Fascinating, that after years of being static, my life is changing.  All due to my own choices.

It is incredible, the sense of accomplishment; knowing I can take credit for these awe-inspiring (small – but significant!) leaps I have taken.  No push from behind, just one foot in front of the other…

And if I just keep plodding along, I will prevail!

The Sixth Day

In completion of my sixth day in self-inflicted training I find myself feeling … lighter.  My legs are no longer heavy in the morning when I run, nor are they sore after.

Each time I strap on my Asics to tromp down two miles, I pause in the middle to do the following exercises:
20 push-ups
20 sit ups &  20 oblique crunches (left and right)
20 triceps dips
20 rows

The fist three days, these exercises, which take less than 10 minutes to complete, caused soreness in all different sorts of muscle groups.  Now, that pain too, has vanished.

My challenge of 2 for Twenty for Twenty-two days, is no longer causing me great physical suffering.  Yes, my mind still protests when I wake at six am, and yes it is difficult to make that conscious choice to just get out the door.  But once I put on my shoes, water-resistant watch, and make my way down the stairs of my apartment building, it is easy to keep going.  My legs move automatically, I focus on my stride, watching traffic, and making it to my mid-point to do the next task of push-ups, sit-ups, etc.

On the way back, knowing I am more than halfway finished, I focus on my reward: a latte at my favorite coffee shop, Sterling Coffee Roasters.  I finish strong and happy with a sense of accomplishment at the very start of my day, and a warm cup of perfectly foamy, steamed milk with delightfully robust espresso to maintain momentum after the endorphins work their way out of my system.

I wonder how the feeling of this workout will change over time; a week or so from now, will the morning run again feel difficult, or will it be routine – on the way to becoming habit…?  As a runner who is still out of practice, I can only hope for the latter!

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Two for Twenty for Twenty-two days

Over the last year, exercise has become what I refer to as “the thing I used to do all the time,” and satisfaction in the way my body appears, feels, and moves has become increasingly sub-standard in my own perspective.  I am proud to say, I have finally reached the crux where I can no longer tolerate myself.  I have renewed vigor and determination to simply feel good again.

Therefore, as of Friday, June 15th, I made myself this promise: Two miles.  Everyday.

I will run two miles, run for twenty minutes, every day for twenty-two days.  Just over three weeks.  Basic purpose to establish routine and get my body used to moving again.  So far, day four, and for the fourth day in a row, two miles done today.  My calves are tight, achy, and sore from wearing my Vibram five-fingers, and I am taking Epsom Salt baths far more frequently than I ever could have imagined.  I know I need the good influence of these shoes to assist my body back into proper running form again; a year is a long time to go without running (especially for a girl who calls herself a runner!).

I have called myself a runner for the past 4 years, ever since completing my first half marathon.  I have never entered a race with the idea of beating anyone in particular, or even my own time.  Running, in my adult life, has become leisurely, meditative, and solely to boost my mood and burn off steam.  I love it.

So, two for twenty for twenty-two days.  This promise, I make myself.

And once twenty-two days are complete, only goodness knows where this running will lead me. I am so excited to experience how this small promise changes me!