Recently, I picked up a copy of Carol M. Green’s book, Run at Any Age: A Beginner’s Guide for Adults. It also came with a companion Runner’s Journal. This has been an amazing book on so many levels! One of the things I have focused on is to find blessings during my run. During my walks I like to pick up heart-shaped rocks, but during my runs I have been listening for great words and phrases in the music that I listen to during the walk/run to spur me on. Today came in the form of a commercial for dog food. The announcer was talking about zoning in on what gets your dog excited enough to wag his tail and then how to “fuel the wag”. I started wondering about the things that can “fuel the wag” for my new running experience.
First of all, I am 49 years old, I am overweight, and I have NEVER, (can I repeat that?) NEVER run a day in my life. I love to walk but have never ran and certainly would never dream of running in front of people. I learned that the author didn’t start running until her late 40s as well. As I started reading, she was confronting every excuse I had: I can’t do it, what if I do it wrong, what if someone sees me and on and on and on. Her bottom line for those excuses was “Get over yourself.”
So this week I went running for the first time outside where people could see me! Honestly, as you are trying to gasp for breath it gets to a point that you just really don’t care who sees you and might even get to the point that you hope someone does see you if you are in need of help! I haven’t gotten to that point yet.
Carol has given great ideas to keep the run fun and motivating: listen to music, chew gum, wear fun clothes. She even suggested if we were truly concerned about people seeing us, we could wear a hat and sunglasses so people wouldn’t recognize us. One thing I am really enjoying is logging my workouts. I can keep track of my miles accrued. It is great incentive! I have been wearing fun running clothes each day to make me feel like a runner. These are great things to fuel the wag!
I am only on day for of incorporating running into my routine and I have started small (alternating walking and running from one power pole to the next). I am going for the small victories right now. The last two days, I have only been able to run 10 poles. Today I ran 13!
I took my book with me to an event today and was going to highlight sections of the book. In writing, we are told that every word and every sentence should go toward the main topic of the book. In novels, you will see a lot of descriptive, sometimes unnecessary narrative and I have learned that is to build word count since novels are generally around 40,000 to 70,000 words. As I was reading my running book, I saw that every word and every sentence was pertinent to the topic of running. I would have to highlight every word of the book!
I am excited for this new journey. For once in my life, I am not exercising to lose weight. I have changed my mindset that I want to exercise to be healthy. I have many grandchildren now and I want to see them grow up and have children of their own. I want to be around to see that! That is my goal. The feeling of achievement is just icing on the cake!