After being back at work for almost 6 months now, I’m finally starting to find my groove as a working mom. I’ve figured out a great routine of how to get all the household duties in order and get my family organized for the work week while still holding down a full-time job. Sure, there are times when I struggle a little, like when I have to work late, or when I have to stay home with a sick babe, but for the most part, it’s been great. It also really helps that Trevor drops off and picks up Olivia each day. It allows me to come home and make that night’s dinner and lunches for the next day. As Olivia and Trevor walk in the door, I’m usually just finishing up dinner and we eat right away and then spend some time hanging out as a family before we put Liv to bed. I’m so thankful that it’s worked out this way.
Now that I’m comfortable in my ‘new’ routine, I was finally ready to start a new exercise program. I’ve been looking for something for a while, but I’ve had a hard time finding the right fit for me and my life. I found structured classes too restrictive; I need to be flexible when it comes to workouts. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money; I didn’t want to financially commit to something that I didn’t like. I found walking wasn’t enough; I needed something that pushed my body more. Running? I HATED running. Like, HATED.
Running SEEMED like a great idea, but each time I tried it, my body would ache, I’d be gasping for air and my chest would be on fire, and I’d soon get a stitch in my side. By the time I got back home after, I would swear that it just wasn’t for me, and that I’d never do it again.
The problem is: running is the only thing that really worked for my exercise needs. It doesn’t cost any money. I’ve got a good pair of running shoes, and more lululemon workout wear than I care to admit. It’s flexible. I don’t have to drive anywhere, I don’t have to get to a class at a certain time, I can just step outside and DO IT!.
At first, I started to think that people who ENJOYED running were insane. Then, I started doing a little bit of research. Maybe they weren’t insane; maybe I was just doing it wrong. Turns out, I was doing it completely wrong.
I was running too fast and too hard, too soon. Silly me, I thought I could just jog until I couldn’t go any further, and then slow down and walk enough to catch my breath, and then continue jogging. WRONG. It turns out that what I needed to do, was to ease myself into running. After some more research, I decided to start using an app called “Couch to 5K”.
It’s a running plan, which starts off slowly to ease you into running. You run three days a week, and each week the runs get progressively more challenging. For the first week, you alternate 60 seconds of running and 90 seconds of walking, for a total of 20 minutes. By the time you get to the ninth week, you’ll be running 30 minutes (or 5 kilometers, depending on how fast you are) without stopping!
I started my first run on July 26th, and have now completed my first five runs! Tonight (after my sixth run), I’ll have finished weeks one and two of the program!
Here are my thoughts on the program so far:
c25k – week one
This was so easy! I could have jogged longer than the 60 seconds, but I wanted to stick to the program, so I started walking as soon as the app
let told me to. I never felt too out of breath, and I never developed a runner’s stitch. I actually thought that I just might be able to like running after all!
UGH. Ok, not so easy. After day 1, my legs were sore. I found myself dragging a little during this run. However, I still managed to follow the program, and not come home hating running. I made sure to stretch really well during my cool down to hopefully avoid a lot of sore muscles. Still didn’t get a stitch!
This run was ok. Still managed to follow the program, and didn’t get a stitch. Not as easy as day 1, but not as hard as day 2.
c25k – week two
This week required me to alternate 90 seconds of jogging and 2 minutes of walking, for a total of 20 minutes. To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I was ready for this, because I felt that I hadn’t yet mastered Week One. I decided to try it, if it was too hard, I’d just re-do the Week One training. Well, it turns out that it was EASIER! I had a great morning run while my family was still sleeping, and it felt great!
Same a day 1. Felt great. Had some parts where I felt exhausted, but I kept going and felt good about it!
So far, I’m loving the program. It’s super easy to follow, and gives me the confidence to keep working at it! I even feel stronger already.
Tonight I’ll complete Day #3, and I hope to continue to share my progress as I work through the program. Wish me luck, as I work on finding my groove!
*NOTE: I’ve chosen to run for time, rather than distance. I’m only covering about 4 kilometers on my runs right now, because I’m still going at a pretty slow pace. I’m not thinking about distance at all right now. I’ll work on my speed and distance as my fitness improves.