Saturday, November 27, 2010

Reflecting on running

Reflections like the corners of mind, haha kind of cheesy start but oh well. This week has been a lot about reflecting on how far I have come over the last few years. It all started Wednesday while watching the Biggest Loser where are they now special as I scoffed at someone finishing a 5k in an hour and eighteen minutes. My wives response was don't judge you once were there too. And oh how true that is, I remember those agonizing mile and half walks that ended with me having such agonizing shin splints I didn't want to move for an hour afterwords. The reflections continued that same very night when I ran my first 5k with a 10 minute or better pace the entire distance. I have completed a 5 mile run with no walk breaks but that was at a much slower pace of a 10:43 mile. A year ago I would have been hard set to run a 50/50 ratio of 5 miles walk/running. Then came Thursday which I designated as an offday but decided to walk home from the mother and laws house to burn off a few calories from all the turkey consumed and it was so cold that I ended up breaking into a run more than a half mile from my house just to get home and get warm.

I remember when I first started to try and run the last block of my walk and how it left me so out of breath by the time I reached my door but so proud at the same time. Running that half mile was nothing oh so very easy and didn't even get me breathing heavy by the time I reached my door. It was a sheer testament to how far I came without even trying to do so proving to myself how much progress I have made. I ended my week by running a 27:40 5k Friday night, when I first ran my very first 5k I came in at time of around 39 minutes and walked well more than half of it way back in March. Here I found myself running the entire 3.1 miles and never dipping below a 9:31 pace ending with an 8:55 pace and my fastest 5k ever. I blew the socks of all my previous 5k's and I walked away from the treadmill knowing if the gym wasn't closing at that very minute I could have easily done a mile or two more at that intense pace.

It seems so amazing how far I have come in the last two years and yet I still can't get past thinking how my 20 year old self at 190 pounds who would run a mile then walk the second half mostly home was in better shape. Part of my mind knows that 20 year old wasn't in better shape than I am now and that there is now way he could have run a 27:40 5k or a 5miler non stop in 54 minutes or completed a half marathon. But another part always thinks he was in better shape because he could run that 2 miles and he was 40 pounds lighter than I am now and didn't have all this terrible excess skin that I hate so much. I remember those 2 miles runs back when I was 20 and stopping afterwords in front of the mirror with a good sheen of sweat on my face so proud of what I had just done and not realizing it really wasn't that much.

So sometimes its good to reflect on things like how easy that half mile run was just so I could get home and get warm and remember how hard those single block runs were or how hard it was to run from home to first base in my kickball league. It makes everything I have done worth it and makes me want to accomplish more so I can look back at this time and say remember when you ran your first sub 28 5k well now your running 20 minute 5k's :)

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