Growing up my friends and listened to a lot of Relient K. When I say growing up what I really mean is between the ages of 15 and 17. Maybe you did too, I don't know. Well one of my favourite songs was "Forward Motion." I haven't thought about it in ages, but today I felt that I could really relate to it, especially the beginning: "I've been banging my head against the wall... for so long it seemed I got knocked, I got knocked out cold." That's exactly how I feel.
I feel like I'm banging my head against a wall right now and it's accomplishing nothing except hurting myself. A few weeks ago I was complaining of being in a rut and now I feel like I'm sinking back into the same thing. I'm not even living for the weekends right now, I'm living for five o'clock. It's bumming me out. So today, instead of thinking about how grumpy and tired I am and how much an overpriced coffee would cheer me up and how that fits into our new budget (it does), I'm going to try and motivate myself to stop banging my head against the wall at least for a little while.
I've started running. I wasn't sure when I wanted to post about this, but I figured week three was a good a time as any. I used to run with a friend but never got very good at it. I was always a codependent runner that required a lot of motivation and absolutely no judgment. Growing up the fat kid, I have learned to be very self conscious about my level of (un)fitness. I know I'm slow, but I'm running, okay?
I stopped running a few years ago when schedules filled up, interests changed and it was hard to find time for my running friend and I to get out there together. I always kind of knew that it was something I wanted to get back into, but there was always a really big eventually in the back of my mind. Well, I know myself and I am good at putting things off when I want to. If I don't set a deadline for myself nothing will ever get done. That's why when there's something at home that needs to get done, I try to just do it. The important things, at least.
When Karl and I visited Christopher and Natalie at the end of September Natalie and I got to talking about running. Natalie is a powerhouse. She's not a crazy running obsessed person, but she does several races a year. After a chat about how she got into running, how she trained, and why she did it (muscular calves), I decided that I was just going to go out there and do it. I paid for and downloaded a running app then and there as incentive.
When I got home a couple days later I immediately went on Amazon and ordered an armband for my phone. I told myself that when that armband showed up in the mail it was go time and until then I was off the hook. When my armband showed up I realized there was a problem. It didn't feel like it was going to stay properly velcroed together and not fall off my arm. I'd read so many reviews before making my $7 purchase that I was disappointed. In the end it didn't matter because my yoga jacket ended up having pockets that were deep enough to hold my phone safely.
So I ran. I'm doing the Couch to 5k program and so far so good. I'm halfway through my third week and already things are stepping up. You start running for a minute then graduate to 90 seconds, and now I'm at three minutes. They're baby steps, but as the encouraging British woman on my app told me Monday night, I'm already running three times longer than I was two weeks ago. It's because I'm awesome.
We didn't have rain for a month or two and it was turning out to be a remarkably dry fall. The day I decided to run the heavens finally let loose. I did it anyway, adding a baseball cap to my already attractive running wear, and slogged through the rain. It turns out, I actually love running in the rain. Most of my runs have happened to fall on days where it's pouring out and I find myself hoping it does rain while I'm out. There's just something so peaceful about the rain. There are also less people out when it's raining, which is nice.
I only run at night time. Well, I also ran early one Saturday morning, but 7 on a Saturday is roughly the equivalent to night. There are less people out, and less people to see me huffing, puffing, and turning purple as I jog downhill for a minute. I am not an attractive runner. I also live in a relatively quiet, well lit neighbourhood. There isn't a ton of foot traffic and I never feel worried about being jumped from the bushes. I can see what's around me and I listen to podcasts instead of music quiet enough that I can hear my feet hitting the pavement.
I initially thought I might run in the mornings. Then I stopped being delusional and realized that even if I did manage to drag myself out of bed at 6 (or earlier!) I would fail. I wake up exhausted and know that I always put more into any workout later in the day. It's also nice because I don't have to worry about being late for work. Running in the evenings is a bit of a balancing act with making dinner and other commitments, but I'm getting there.
Running is a really big change in my life. I'm enjoying and hope it's something that I can keep up with. It's also just another one of the ways I'm hoping to survive any impending zombie apocalypse. Soon I'll be able to add "outrunning zombies" to the list with "non-reliance on corrective vision" (because no one with glasses or contacts ever makes it). Double tap.