Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Let's Take This Outside ....
Well, the 5K came and went .... I didn't post right off, I guess I was too exhausted! It was a challenge for my level of fitness; 40 degrees, windy, and oh yeah -- outside! With HILLS! All street and sidewalk running. Not the comfy treadmill I got accustomed to! I walked a lot of it, but I still finished in better time than I made on the treadmill. I came in 377th out of 456 .... 44 minutes. Poor Slick had to wait a long time in the cold wind for me to finish! I have to say, she looked quite slick in her pretty exercise clothes and cool sunglasses. I was wearing paint-stained sweatpants and a baggy t-shirt and huffing like a steam engine. I promised myself I'd buy pretty exercise clothes once I lost 20 pounds. 5 more to go for that goal!
It was a huge crowd. We had microchip thingies on our shoes, which measured both the time from the gun, and the time from crossing the start line. We stood for the National Anthem, then assembled in the street at the starting point. It took 36 seconds for me just to get to the starting line, that's how crowded it was. I never even heard the gun, just noticed people around me suddenly running. It was a beautiful, clear, sunny morning, but I didn't appreciate it as much as I should have, I was so concerned with moving. And keeping warm! I was in a short-sleeved shirt, and my arms were so cold they hurt.
There were a lot of people in costumes. Seven men and one women dressed up as "Gretchen." Gretchen is apparently a German beer wench, and they wore blond wigs and green backless dresses. Two other men were prom queens. There were a few butterflies and a banana or two. Well ... I think there was a banana. I saw it towards the end, and it might have been a hallucination. One guy, I think he was 2nd place, was wearing blue bikini underwear over spandex pants and a t-shirt with the chest cut out, and the Superman S painted on his chest. The fastest runners were something like 22 minutes, and they must have been neck-and-neck, because their times were the same.
I was sore for days, but I was so pleased that I entered, showed up, started and finished. I came away with a renewed dedication to fitness. I have to be able to run outside, I can't just be a treadmill princess. So I am adding 1 day a week of outside running / walking, on the track, then once I'm accustomed to that, I'll go outside more often. There should be enough nice days even in the winter for me to manage at least one time a week outside.
I'm really looking forward to the next 5k, in May. I don't have a time goal, I just want to be able to RUN the whole thing!
So now it's been 10 weeks since I set foot in the gym. I've lost 15 lbs and gone down a clothing size. And I feel good. Not just physically, though that's a big part of it -- I feel strong, and I can see muscles where there weren't any for a long time, and my ankles have re-appeared. I feel good mentally, too. It's a big boost to the self-esteem to lose weight, sure ... but the biggest feel-good is the sense of accomplishment that comes from setting my mind on something and heading for it, without giving up when something frustrates me.
Turning 42 was horrifying for me (am I 42? I've had my birthday and I was born in 1969. That's 42, right?) and I know I can't turn back time ... but I can certainly try to find that inner child, and feel young again!
(Disclaimer--adorable child is not me 40 years ago. It's Tillie's only girl child, a year ago in a corn maze)