I keep thinking back to when I first actually started running. And then I realize that what I’m remembering isn’t actually my first go at it.
Spring semester of my first year of college is when I started going to the gym consistently. I think it was only 3 times a week, but I also had to walk everywhere. And there were stairs…
I think I started to try to start a running program spring of my second year, but it was all on the treadmill. Then I studied abroad in the summer, gained a little too much weight (if people heard the actual amount, I’m sure I’d get smacked. But, it was A) the most I had ever weighted up to that point in my life and B) enough that I couldn’t fit into 95% of my clothes (some of which I had just bought before leaving), but the next size up was still too big for me. So, it felt like muffin top central or clothes falling off. Can’t really win. I went to the gym 2x a day sometimes and was going to try that Special K diet. I think I made it to night one before I was angry with that diet. Luckily, by the time fall semester had started I had chilled out quite a bit. I must of been very pleasant to be around during that time.
I was back in my gym routine, and by the summer before my last year, I was making some real progress. Then I got really sick about two week before school started. I went back to school, but I just got worse. I was out of commission for ~4 weeks. I ended up having to come from school, but I got better and made it back to school. I had no energy until about October, so I had to start ALL over with everything. I could barely make it through riding a stationary bike for 20 minutes!
By the end of my last year, I was feeling great. I had spoken with our school nutritionist and had made some better changes to my diet. About a week after I graduated, I started grad school. By the end of the fall semester, I could run for 45 minutes on the treadmill!
During the spring semester, I took my running outside. I had a good base from all that time doing other cardio in the gym, so I think starting a training program for a HM felt smoother. Like I said, I could run 45 minutes on a treadmill. I started with running 2 miles outside and built up from that. Some runs weren’t pretty, but they all got done. I graduated from grad school, moved to my new state, started teaching, and ran a half marathon that November. Two weeks later I ran a Turkey Trot 10k. And it’s been all downhill from there.
I think the biggest difference is that I haven’t kept up the exercise routine in general. In both college and grad school, I was working out consistently. I think once the stress of school and moving hit me, I let a lot of my good habits go, like the healthier eating, consistent working out, and going to bed/waking up at the same time each day.
Finally, something that’s getting me is reading some beginner running forums/blogs. I can’t find any that are good for me! It really seems like people say hey, I want to start running, and then BAM, they’re running 60 miles a week. Or, they go for their first run and then they’re running 7-8 minute miles. Yeah, that’s not me. I just start feeling bad about myself. So, no more reading those! But, I would love a great resource about running to read.
Annnnddddd now I’m running out of steam writing this!