I am proud to report that even though it was never a New Year's resolution, lately I have been doing a fantastic job exercising. Warmer temperatures (80 degrees tomorrow in the D.C. area??) means more long walks with the dogs, and they also signal the arrival of outdoor races. I have never claimed to be a runner, and about eight months ago I had abandoned my gym membership and consequently running on the treadmill altogether.
Then my buddy asked me if I was interested in running in a race at the high school we attended. How long of a race? You know, the length of pi, in keeping with our school's nerdy traditions -- we would run 3.14159 miles (or approximately a 5K, in normal-people terms). Now, I should have immediately leaped at the opportunity, seeing as during my gym-going days of yore I was running several 5Ks a week on the treadmill. But I've always hated running outside, and I hadn't run in so long, and I just sort of hate running in general. To be a good friend, though, I said yes, and I'm glad I did, because as with all things in life, it really wasn't bad at all. The anticipation of pain and general distress was much worse.
Matt agreed to run too, and as a result my friend's husband decided at the very last minute he'd run as well since I did not properly communicate that Matt would not be available for standing around and gossiping while the ladies ran. Matt even told his students on Friday that he would be running in this pi race, and with a line anyone who graduated from my high school can appreciate, his students responded, "Watch your back -- those Jefferson kids are competitive!"
We, of course, as a motley crew of four were not particularly competitive runners, finishing almost exactly in the middle of the 220-contestant pack with respectable times of about 33 minutes. An 11-minute mile is nothing to write home about, but my friend and I achieved our goal of not walking, we both ran our first 5Ks, and between the four of us we raised $105 for the class of 2013 to have a rockin' prom (which is a cause I can totally support since I attended many a car wash to defray the cost of our prom). Not exactly the world's most pressing issue, but a worthy cause nonetheless.
In summary, if you are worried that you cannot run 3 continuous miles, take it from the world's least-likely runner: you can do it! And, though I am sure you've heard it a thousand times, it's so true: If you're having a hard time motivating yourself to exercise, find a buddy who will help keep you on track.
Despite the fact that I had not run in months before I ran the pi race yesterday, I was still prepared to run thanks to the exercise routine I've been following this winter. I've already told you about my obsession with Just Dance 2, and I've added something else to the mix as well. More on that tomorrow!