Well, since high school at least. But today I did it. I actually ran 3.1 miles! It may not have been in a race. It may have been on a machine instead of the great outdoors. But I did it. Completely unexpectedly, and it feels awesome.
As usual on Tuesday, I headed to the gym for Power and then a 20-30 minute cardio workout afterwards. I was a little disappointed in Power because the Tuesday instructor hasn’t reviewed enough of the new release to teach it and we just did old tracks. Our gym started the Spring ’10 release on Saturday and I loved it so much I was sad not to do it today. Nevertheless, it was still a good workout and I challenged myself just the right amount since I like to play Goldilocks.
After class, I hopped on the treadmill planning to do the same interval workout I did last week. One interval into it I knew that just wasn’t happening. My legs felt like lead hitting 7.0 and I just wasn’t feeling it at all. I figured I would modify and run intervals of a few minutes at 6.0, a minute at 4.0, a few minutes at 6.0, a minute at 4.0, lather rinse repeat until I was done.
Turns out, running at 6.0 felt good. I didn’t feel the need to drop back down to 4.0 after a few minutes. So I didn’t. I kept going, figuring I would get tired in a few more minutes and take a break then. But that need for a break never came. And I just kept pushing on. I even got an extra wind and bumped the speed up a couple tenths of a degree every few minutes, reaching a 6.6 speed for the last 5-10 minutes or so. I was loving my run. That has never happened to me before. No joke. Running and me do not normally bond so well. I like it for a bit, but it certainly does not like me, so then I decide to make the feeling mutual and stop.
But today was different. Once I got to about 20 minutes straight of running, I knew I wanted to reach that 3.1 mileage. I don’t know why it got in my head, but it did and it was a goal I was determined to get to.
I will admit the last 1/2 mile was starting to get tough on me. My calves were hurting (from the incline, from my stride, I have no clue but they hurt!) and I was reaching the point where I thought “I don’t have to finish. I’ve already done more than anticipated”. But I kept pushing. What was my motivation? Knowing how proud I would feel to do something I haven’t done in a long time. Knowing that I would regret it if I stopped. Knowing how happy you all would be for me and celebrate with me on this small triumph of mine. Having something workout related to get excited about, which sadly I haven’t been able to have in my life too much recently with my “going through the motions” workouts.
It may seem a small victory, but it was a big one as well. It reminded me of the fact that I can push through and endure anything. It shows me I can get through trials ranging from finishing a run to walking blindly in faith where emotions run high. I have overcome many challenges already in my life (binge eating, depression, competition prep! ;)) and they have given me the strength to do anything else I may set my mind to. Lift up each and every victory in your life. They are around you each and every day. Be proud of them; share them; own your accomplishments. Cross that finish line waiting for you in whatever challenge you are facing. Then celebrate it. No matter how small it may be. What is your victory today? And…how can I help my calves? 😉