I fall into certain practices and habits very quickly. Unfortunately, exercise and fashion are the exceptions to that rule, so starting any sort of program or regular routine is very difficult. After I started running with Adam on Sundays, it was as much to my surprise as his when I began running with another friend during the week.
Then I was invited to go to a group class at Resolute Running, a Homewood-based running gym. Even when I could barely run a mile, they encouraged me to call myself a runner. During that time, Adam challenged me to push myself in running the way I push myself to do better in every other aspect of my life. At first, I was offended. These runs allowed me to wallow in my lack of athleticism instead of working out.
Once I thought about it for a time, I made the choice to push myself just a little bit more, but also to cross train and be mindful of my joints. After only four weeks, I could run almost 1.5 miles without stopping or severe joint pain. Though it might not sound like much, I am now regularly running longer routes than have compromised my knees in the past.
My goal is currently to run a 5K, then to work with a coach at Resolute Running to come up with a plan for a half marathon (a what?). I have recently purchased an actual athletic shirt, and have plans to go running in Philadelphia while I'm in there.
For me, continuing to run is now like sticking with physics in college. Neither of these things come easily to me, and I've poked fun of individuals who were masochistic enough to push through on either path. Finishing my physics degree became one of the biggest challenges I've ever faced, and completing it extremely satisfying.
It is my hope that crossing the finish line at my first 5K will be just as much of a rush. At this point, maybe I'll start actually calling myself a runner. Maybe. Until then, I'll keep going for runs.