And So, I Run

I have this thing I like to do. I lace up my shoes, strap Ryder into the pram, set my watch and phone, then I head out the door. With music in my ears and a smile on my face, I run. I may not run far and I may not run fast, but boy, what a rush. The wind in my hair, my legs pumping rhythmically, the world laid out before me, I feel free. I feel alive.

It is Sunday morning and I have run twice this week. I was hoping for three but the weather has been windy and wet all week, easing up enough to squeeze a run in on Friday afternoon. It returned with a vengeance yesterday and as the day rapidly approaches noon it is looking less and less likely I will run today. If I were running solo I wouldn’t mind so much if I got caught in a sudden downpour, but it is not something I am willing to chance with my son “on board”. My usual running track has a tendency to flood in parts and be ridiculously slippery in other parts after wet weather, so maybe it is not worth the risk any way.

I am now at the halfway point of my Couch to 5 kilometre (C25k) program. To date, my longest run has been 4.41km, which took 48:52. That was on Monday. My fastest time for 1 kilometre so far is 8:20, though my fastest average pace is 11:05. Before I started I couldn’t even run for 30 seconds. All of these times have been while running with the pram, so it will be interesting to see how my times compare to running solo. You may be wondering why I shared all those boring numbers with you. This post will serve as a record of sorts, a post to reflect upon as I finish my C25K program and move onward and upward.

Onward and upward to what? Well, on Sunday the 1st of June 2014, I am entering a half-marathon. That’s 21.1km for those who aren’t into this running business. This may seem like a lofty goal when I cannot even run 5km yet, but it is giving me the motivation I need to keep going. To continue with my C25K program, to better myself. It is giving me focus and direction, something to aim for when I’d rather stay in bed.

There are four weeks left of the C25K program, so weather permitting I should be finished halfway through October. This is perfect timing as I am going to Perth for my birthday over the weekend of the 25th -28th and I would love to run 5km in Perth. Once I finish the C25K program I will be launching straight into a beginner’s half-marathon training plan upon my return from Perth. I’ll be stoked if I can run 10km by the end of the year.

I run for many reasons, fitness being just one of them. I run to clear my head, to shake a bad mood, to celebrate good news, to reward myself. I run to let my brain “switch off” for a while and my feet to take over. I run to feel my body doing things I never thought possible. I run for the joy of feeling like I am invincible, like I can accomplish anything I set my mind to. I run to remind myself that I am only human and humans can make mistakes. I run for the surprised feeling I get when I run further than I thought I could, that sense of pride when I push myself that little bit further. I run for that overwhelming sense of happiness when I finish a run and the endorphins kick in. I run for the feeling of accomplishment when I return home, sweat running down my face and muscles twitching.

There are a lot of ways I could express myself, vent my frustrations or get fit. There a lot of situations in life where I feel like I don’t have control and am learning how to control the situations that I can. Sometimes things just don’t make sense. And so, I run.

Had it not been for Kate and her fabulous #OperationMOVE team, I would have never discovered the joy of running. To Kate and all the crew, words cannot describe my love for you all. Thank a million times over for the support, encouragement and JFDI attitude you all provide on a daily basis.