Running *gasp* Towards 30
[Long post filled with too much personal information ahead. You’ve been warned.]
If you’ve known me for any amount of time, I’ve probably thrown into casual conversation that you will only find me running if something is chasing me. I absolutely hate to run. HATE it. Really I just hate cardio, or maybe even working out in general. The gym legitimately scares me. Those weight machines look like death contraptions. Quite frankly, experience has confirmed my belief that they are torture devices. Y’all, despite what all of those health nut blogs say, I DO NOT feel better after the gym. I hurt. We’re talking ibuprofen and hot shower taking pain. Why oh why do people say they feel BETTER after the gym!?
I’m just going to go out on a limb here and sum this up by saying that I’m not a very athletic individual. Ok, ok, so I’m still really proud that I did the most sit ups, push ups, and pull ups out of anyone else in the 3rd grade, but that’s about the end of my athletic prowess. You see, after 3rd grade comes 4th. I moved to Hawaii in the 4th grade. They do PE outside in that muggy mess they call paradise, and PE usually consisted of running a mile. I was always the last one, walking most of the way. Then came another move to Oklahoma, where I thought “Yeah, it might be fun to play some of these sports on my class roster” just to find out that Oklahoman’s place their kids in sports as toddlers and that every other person had been playing for basically the last decade. Count.Me.Out.
I do really like chocolate, oh and carbs. If you want to talk about what works for me, food about sums it up. Growing up, I was the kid who loved her coloring books and her sewing machine. I loved my books and good music. I loved my friends and helping others. I loved nothing athletic. (Ok, can bowling be athletic? I’ve always really loved bowling). So when I woke up today and thought “I could totally run a 5k before my birthday”, I wondered if some of that elastic I bought from China had lead or toxic chemicals and had seeped into my brain last night while I was up ’til the wee hours filling bookmark orders.
I casually mentioned Couch25k on the way to church this morning. 3 hours later the daze of being insane had finally worn off, and I’d put aside the idea. 4 hours later Russell had me convinced that we should try it. 5 hours later I’d downloaded the app. 6 hours later he was looking up 5ks for us to complete together. 10 hours later, and I was putting on my tennis shoes to embark on Day 1.
I’d like to tell you I was excited. I wasn’t. I’m not sure if I mentioned this, but I HATE running. I can already hear some of you saying “Oh, but Ashley! You walk 60 miles in 3 days”. Yes, I do, and the key word there is WALK. Don’t get me wrong, it’s no stroll through the gardens. It’s hard, and stubbornness and anger are usually what get me through it, but I also walk every single day. No new skills needed, just some mental endurance usually conjured up by the reason that I’m walking.
Speaking of anger, I am probably one of the least angry people that I know. Anger is not an emotion that computes well with my natural state of being. It takes a lot to get me angry. I don’t like being angry. I don’t cope well with angry people. You want to know what makes me angry? Running. I’m so serious right now. Something about it just makes me fueled with this foreign emotion that I have no idea what to do with. The only way I can harness the mental toughness it takes to press forward, is to wrangle the anger and use it. I mean, I had to dig out some of my favorite metal tunes just to make it through the 30 minutes of Day 1 (that was only kind of a joke). Let’s not get started on the constant repentance running takes. Every time that Couch25k drill sergeant yelled at me to start running, I had some very not nice words in my head for him and the entire experience.
So, Day 1 was… interesting. I’ll let you know how Tuesday goes, for Day 2. I really would just like to be able to complete a 5k, and maybe even be happy while doing it! Really I’m just refusing to buy the next size up in clothes so something has got to give, and it won’t be the cookies! *kidding*