Running is the most natural thing we can do. As children, we didn’t have to learn how to run. We watched the older kids, and just began chasing after them. I ran track in high school and my freshman year of college. I was sidelined by a sprained ACL toward the end of the indoor season. I wish I could say it happened during a meet, but no, I got hurt in practice. My injury was not serious, but it was painful and I was afraid to run again. For years I used my injury as an excuse not to run. Then as I got older, I told myself that I can save my knees by just walking. I had convinced myself that I could not endure the pounding associated with running.
One day, about two years ago, I decided that I wanted to run again. Not only that, I wanted to run a half-marathon with a friend. I had been a sprinter. Anything longer than 400 meters was like cross-country to me. Whenever the team went out for a three mile run, I was always the last one to finish. But I decided that this was a barrier that I needed to overcome.
I set out to run 30 minutes and found out I could not even three minutes before I needed to walk. Eventually, I learned to slow down and pace myself. After only six months, of running on average 8 miles a week, we ran that half-marathon. We ran and walked the first 8 miles and then walked the rest of the way to the finish line. We finish in 3 1/2 hours and rejoiced because we did it.
I have since then, taken my running to the next level. I currently log around 15 miles a week. I plan to run a few 5k and 10k races before I attempt another half-marathon. I’m planning to run the Disney Half-Marathon next year. I decided to share this experience because there is something that you used to love doing, that you don’t do anymore. Maybe you’re like me, and you’re afraid you’ll get hurt. Or possibly you think you’re too old, heavy, whatever to do that now. Let me encourage you that you can always (fill in the blank) again. Whatever it is, stop making excuses and start again today.
The Little Things You Can Do Today
- Find a group of people who are doing whatever it is and join them.
- Give yourself permission to not be as good as you once were but believe you can get better.
- Make a commitment to engage in this activity on some level everyday.
- Remember slow and steady wins the race.
Until Next Week,
Nicole D.P. McLaughlin, P.T.
- 4 Ways To Become A Faster Runner in 10 Minutes Or Less (3wraces.wordpress.com)
- Couch to… Half Marathon? (Part 1) (momsruncleveland.wordpress.com)
- Five Months and Counting (dancingtorunning.com)