The most amazing thing happened this morning when I went back to the gym. I say back to the gym because I’d been away from the gym for a full five days. I, of course, had all kinds of excuses for not getting to the gym for five days but I won’t bore you with that here.
What counts is what happened when I finally got back there this morning. I forced myself out of bed at 5:30 AM because I knew if I didn’t get back to the gym today, I’d maybe never go back. And I have a race in less than 2 months.
So I went. It was windy and really cold this morning. But I went. I really wanted to be in bed. But I went. I got on the treadmill thinking this workout was just going to bite, but here I was.
So I started my walking warmup, thinking for the whole four minutes I was so not going to be able to do any effective running (really still at the jogging stage) this morning. But at the 4-minute mark, I kicked up the treadmill to 5.0 miles an hour (slow I know) and started jogging. I figured if I was lucky, I’d make three minutes the way I was feeling. But then something strange happened. 3 minutes….still feeling strong, 4 minutes…not short of breath, 6 minutes…wow, legs are not rubbery yet, 7 minutes….hey, this is the longest I’ve ever run and I’m still running and finally 8 minutes, ok, time to walk!
But 8 minutes? That’s the longest interval I’ve run. After that, I walked 3 minutes, and then ran 5, walked 2, ran 4, walked two, ran a couple of 3 minute intervals and alternated comfortably for a full 45 minutes and 3.5 miles. And on the shorter intervals, I even kicked up the speed to 5.2 and 5.5 miles per hour. Still slow for all the real runners out there, but huge progress for me.
When you consider that when I started, running a full minute at even a pace of 4.8 miles an hour almost killed me, I’ve come a long way since the end of November. I’ve still got a ways to go, but I feel like I actually may get there. I think I’ll be ready for this race in April. I only have to run two miles (after swimming 400 meters and biking six miles), but I’ll be able to do it. And if I can’t run the whole two miles, I’ll be able to run most of it.
So what started out as a “I so don’t want to be here doing this” running session this morning turned out to be one of the best I’ve had.
I’m biking tomorrow, running again on Wednesday. I won’t be staying away from the gym for a full five days again, and I hope my running progress will be accelerated from here on out. I’m going to keep pushing.
It’s really not easy to get out of bed and get to the gym but when I’m done and all sweaty and I can measure the progress I’m making, it’s so worth it.