Ready to Run

It’s time to add a new life event, one that I’ve been avoiding writing about. Because what if I quit. What if I sucked? What if I hated it? But here it is.

I am now a runner.

It started with a work weight loss challenge. I needed to lose 7 percent of my body weight to be in the money. So my friend V and I started climbing the stairs daily at work. And we both downloaded the MyFitnessPal app.

That’s me, seesmarees.

Well, it made us account for all of our calories (and the bar code scanner in the app is freakin’ awesome!). Knowing exactly how much we were eating made a huge difference.

But it wasn’t enough. I also bought a FitBit. Several of my friends also own one, and it tracks your steps, floors and calories burned (among other things). So basically, you can compete with you friends to get the most steps in. I can’t even begin to tell you how much that helped in the weight loss process! I wanted to beat them all! (But man, K walks EVERYWHERE, so I haven’t beaten her once.)
So I started going on more walks. I took the stairs every day to the third floor. I avoided every elevator. And I lost a whole pound. Peachy. 
That’s when the Couch to 5K program came into my life. And oh yes, there’s an app for that, too. It starts you off slow, because if you’re not physically fit, trying to run 3 miles right off the bat will likely make you keel over. Now look, I’m not *that* out of shape. I can ride my road bike for 15+ miles without feeling like I’m at death’s door, but I couldn’t run.

Cto5K: Week 6 Day 1 is next!
I always thought with my bad knees, it wouldn’t be possible, but something strange was happening: My knees barely hurt. I was climbing stairs every day and strengthening my quads, like the physical therapist recommended, and my knees were getting better! 
So I started running in old shoes. Now, the intervals in the first two weeks of the program are pretty short. One minute runs lead into 90 second runs (jogging, really). But the shin splints were already on their way. So I bought new shoes. And they were the wrong shoes.
Then I went to Fit2Run, where they did a running analysis on a treadmill. This was at the beginning of Week 4 of the program. I figured I was serious enough, that I needed real running shoes. The analysis found I should be wearing stability shoes because my ankles turn slightly when I strike. I literally ran around the store in several different brands of shoes before deciding on the Saucony Hurricane 15. The shoes are amazing! Expensive, yes, but amazing! You do get what you pay for, and they were worth the $140 price tag. 
But a really funny thing happened at the store: I wasn’t embarrassed to be seen running. And I didn’t hold onto the rails on the treadmill, AND I DIDN’T FALL OFF. 
Here’s the thing with running and weight loss, though. I went about the weight loss correctly, as in I didn’t starve myself, and I didn’t just lose water weight at any point. Unfortunately, that also meant that I didn’t lose the nearly 12 lbs. required in 8 weeks. 
Instead, I’ve now lost 5.4 lbs. in 9 weeks, pounds I will likely keep off. But that doesn’t tell the whole story. 
I’ve lost:
.5 from my neck (!)
.75 from each bicep
1.25 from my waist
1.25 inches from each thigh
1.5 from my hips
AND
2.25 inches from my chest
I’m gaining muscle while losing fat. So I can’t complain about big number differences on the scale. I’m also drinking up 100 oz. of water a day. Some days I get stuck at 72, but other days, I’m over 100. 
My last run, two days ago (I’ve skipped two days because I’m sick), included 20 minutes straight of running. TWENTY MINUTES! I questioned whether I could do it, but I DID IT! 
All of my runs have been on roads near my house. It’s just easier that way. I’d love to see what running on a treadmill is like, but I can see it would be a pain with intervals. I’m back to intervals on the run today, so we’ll see how that goes. 
One more thing, something I never thought I’d say: I LOVE RUNNING!
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