I’ve been running for a year! Well, a little more than a year. I get asked a lot how I got started running. In the spring and summer of 2012, I was doing a lot of walking to exercise and lose weight. I was getting walks in consistently and had changed my diet, so I was seeing great results but I realized that I wanted to add a more vigorous workout to my routine. So, one day when I was out for a walk, I decided to try running a little. I didn’t get very far (maybe five minutes) before I was winded, but I did it.
As much as I would’ve liked to, I knew I wasn’t going to go out and run five miles right off the bat. So, I had to start slow. I always listened to music when I walked, so I decided to run for a song. When the song was over, I walked. Then I did it again—run a song, walk a song. (I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was doing intervals.) Pretty soon, I was able to run for two songs, then three, then four, and so on.
I was starting to run on a regular basis and wanted to challenge myself by signing up for a 5K so I’d have something to train for. I signed up for the Monster Dash 5K, got a training plan recommendation, and got to work. I liked having a training plan to follow because it gave me a set plan for workouts. I ended up running another smaller 5K a couple weeks before Monster Dash and was surprised at how good I felt. It gave me a lot of confidence going into a bigger race. I had a goal of finishing the Monster Dash 5K in 35 minutes, and I ran it in 32:43!
Before I knew it running was part of my routine. I started noticing that if I went a couple days without running or working out I would get the urge to get out for a run (even if it was short). I started signing up for more races so I would have things to train for, try out some new distances, and challenge myself. Over the last year, I ran 8 races!
My advice for anyone who has thought about running is to just give it a shot. You don’t have to run 10 miles your first time out. Start slow, listen to your body, and just have fun with it. It’s not for everyone, but you never know if you’ll love it or hate it until you give it a try.