Well, not really. But sort of. I really ought to get myself some new running shoes. And I really should be stretching a lot more, both before and after. My body certainly isn’t built like it used to be and that’s not to say it was anything close to resembling the picture of good health back then either.
Let’s go back a few steps and catch our breaths.
You might remember something that I talked about in the vlog last month. I’m not in good shape and it’s about time I started taking better care of myself. For at least the last couple of years, I’ve made the excuse that I simply don’t have the time to exercise. The truth is that I haven’t been making it a priority. I’ve let other things get in the way.
So, with the weather looking a little more cheerful, I decided to take up running. Or at least some reasonable facsimile of what running should look like. Realistically, I’m probably more like Phoebe from the TV show Friends, except I don’t think I’m having nearly as much fun. Nor do I sing about smelly cats, at least not on a regular basis and definitely not in public.
Leveraging the power of Google Maps, I planned out a route in my neighborhood that is right around five kilometers in length. This way, I can more easily compare how I’m doing with other 5K people with a legitimate level of confidence. And by running exactly the same route each time, I can more easily compare my own performance against that of my past self.
The first run, as I mentioned in the vlog, took 46 minutes. The next one took 38 minutes. I thought I was on quite the path of improvement, but subsequent sessions were timed at 41 and 43 minutes. One step forward, two steps back.
My friend Allan says that I shouldn’t be worried about times at this point. It’s more important to avoid injury since I’m new to all of this. He’s right. But I have this habit of wanting to quantify everything. Maybe you can thank the wide availability of analytics related to blogging and social media for that. Don’t forget to like, comment and subscribe?
When I see my times steadily getting worse, my self-esteem takes a serious hit. And intellectually, I know that’s not the way I should be thinking about it. I should be focusing on the positive. I’ve made the conscious decision to be more active. I’m actually running for the first time in two or three years. Even though this most recent run was slower, I never stopped moving. I never took a break. I walked when I couldn’t run.
My calves are tight and my ankles are a little sore, but I powered through it. Mind over matter. That should be a win. I should feel proud. I should know as well as anyone that I need to celebrate the small victories, because they’re not actually that small. I just have to keep moving forward, one step at a time.
And that probably calls for some new shoes.