Sunday, March 13, 2011
Well, I feel like I should change my blog back to "reading, writing, running". I've been running...against doctor's orders.
I took about a two year break and it made me really sad. I itched to go outsides. I substituted running with various other low impact activities: dancing, walking, hiking, Bar, but nothing compares to the feeling of wind in your hair, and the accomplishment of finishing a mileage you never thought you could, or perhaps could but then end up beating your own time doing it. So with these various activities, I decided I'd take this break, strengthen my core and my legs to help out those nasty knees and see what happens. One mile turned into four and here I am. A ten minute mile turned into a 9 minute mile. Granted, that nine minute mile I can only keep up for two miles, but I'm still below the 10 minute mile mark on most of my long distances which was my goal.
A few weeks ago I started training for my second 10k and I might just sign up for another one in May. The thing is, no matter what the doctors say, I love to run. I never thought I did. Like so many non-truths, I told my self I hated running. I've told myself a lot of things like this: I'm a bad writer, when really it was just my grammar was bad, I'm not smart when I'd get almost straight As with the occasional Bs. I"m not very pretty when apparently, via my friends observations, I'd actually turn some heads. But in my mind, I kept telling myself all of these things until I got tired of getting down on myself. Running was one of those things.
I started running probably back in 2004 mainly to try to loose weight. Then I got laid off and I had all this excess time, so I decided to train for a 10k, but ended up running a 5k because I pulled my hamstring 2 weeks before. But after that, I was kind of hooked. I'd been running in shoes two sizes to small, so I remedied that. I was running in HORRIBLE sports bras, so I forked over the mula that would hold these puppies in place and I got some running gear. I read up a lot on what was competetative, what was realistic, etc cuz I'm not about the pushing myself to my limits, I like going right before the limit, testing the water, then pushing. I don't like to get injurted so why force myself? So running I went...but no matter what, my back hurt and my knees ached. So now what?
A year ago I decided to get all this stuff checked out which is when I decided on the break. My hips and lower back pop out of their natural alignment because my lower ab muscles aren't used to holding them in. Sometimes I walk and run with a "duck" butt, sticking my butt out to mimic JLo's ginormus but. But mines not that big so I need to pull that sucker in, and stand up straight. SO after a year of building up those muscles in my back and strengthning my quads for my knees and getting finally proper running shoes, I went running and I'm doing pretty well in the back department, but the knees? They still ache, especially during long distances.
Now, not only am I running again, I'm reading like a fiend. Currently, it's "Born to Run" and man, is it inspirational and informative. I've described it as "exciting" to read, like a marathon unfolding chapter by chapter...sports commentary at every page. I love it! I'm almost done with it and I know I'm going to be sad. But for a while already, I had this nagging thought "should I just go barefoot?" Other people have done it, my friends do it, friends of friends do it and they've sung of the benefits...But should I? This coming from a girl who's family never let us walk around without shoes, let alone without socks, "Don't step on the cold surface with your bare feet, you'll catch a cold!" This over and over again, ingrained in my brain. I slowly started to go barefoot in places I felt safe: beaches, parks, my apartment. But I think come October, its time to try this "Barefoot" running thing out and by those toe shoes. I'm actually really excited about it because yes, as much as the side affects of running are losing weight and becoming stronger, helping my heart, blah blah, I really just enjoy running. I love that I can do it by myself, with or without music and what better back ground scenery than Portland, all over Portland? I've also noticed that whenever I feel like my head and heart are going to explode from too much thinking, all I can think about is putting my running shoes back on and heading out...I've yet to follow that impulse.
I'm not going to become an ultramarathoner because I've always sworn off marathons, but what if...what IF I actually could run a marathon with minimal pain...what if...