July 5, 2013

Running Woes: The Beginning

I thought it best to start out with not necessarily why I run, because I feel like that's another post entirely, but more importantly how I got into running. In high school, I used to view running as insane - it seemed monotonous and all I really heard about it was that it was hard. So, naturally, I didn't view it as something I wanted to try. Besides, I was already active from dancing 10 hours a week, so I didn't really have time.
This is how I used to imagine I would feel running a marathon.
I remember going to the gym for the first time when I was 16 with my boyfriend. Is that weird that I'd never stepped foot inside a gym before that? He certainly thought it was. Anyways, after side-eyeing the complicated machines, I let out a sigh of relief when he said that we should warm up by running 10 minutes on the treadmill. Sure, a treadmill, no problem! I thought.

With the treadmill set to 5.0, at no incline (so the belt was moving under me, rather than propelling myself off of the belt), I started really struggling around 3 minutes. Savvy treadmill users will know that 5.0 speed is roughly a snail's pace, or just under 5 miles an hour. How could I possibly run 10 minutes in a row without stopping, let alone 26.2 miles?
A cheetah, I was not.
Roughly 5 years later, after I had left my hometown dance studio, tiptoed into the world of college, and realized I couldn't keep my physique without doing at least some kind of exercise, I would run on the treadmills at the university gym, and dabbled (I'm a serious addict of dabbling) in the fitness classes. These went okay, but seemed mostly like work, not fun.

The idea of actually running a marathon came into my brain from my dear friend and who was to be my future (now past) roommate, Amanda. When we first met, she told me that running a marathon was on her bucket list and that she had started training for a half. Talking to her got me amped up about it, and the seed was officially planted in my brain.
(Cue Inception BRRRRWAARRRMMMM sound)
About a year later, still rooming with Amanda, we were living in a house in North Austin and I decided it was a good idea to start my outdoor-running regime. I had just finished my semester of study abroad in France and, in addition to life experiences and wine knowledge, I also acquired a good 15 lbs. So I figured it would be a good a time as any to start running. In March. In Texas. I might also mention that where we lived, the area was about 90% cement. My friends, lacing up my shoes and plowing out into the Texas sun with relatively no outdoor running experience was NOT a good idea. I ran a pathetic mile around our little block and just about died from the heat, again wondering what the hell I was thinking.
the lonely and desolate Texas road
So you must wonder where my desire to run a marathon after all the negative thoughts? Stay tuned for Part 2...

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