In high school I was in shape. I played Volleyball. I could run sprints. I ran an 8 minute mile. I felt pretty good. And then I went to college and my physical activity went down a notch, but not too badly. Most importantly, my self-esteem about my athletic abilities did not budge an inch. I watched Fear Factor and thought, I could totally do that. (Unless it was a swimming challenge, because let's face it—I have always sucked at swimming.) But I considered myself to be able to do whatever I could do, back in the day. Crunches, no problem...just tell me when to stop. Flexed arm hang...what's the big deal? I could climb a rope to the top, and do squats without blinking.
But the old adage, If you don't use it, you lose it, is still true. Except, that I was NOT using it so much, that I didn't even have a chance to see that it was gone. Even after having five kids, I still figured that if I had to do something physical, I probably could. I mean, people are always running these 5ks. I could do that. Probably.
Add in the fact that Tyler now does the layout for a running magazine. I am constantly hearing all these articles about running. Some about super-moms who run. Others about where to run and how to run. I have been bombarded by running. I figured now was the time to prove that I've still got it.
So, the other evening, I told Tyler that I was going to run a mile in the morning. I don't think he laughed out loud, but he might have smirked for a very long time. I planned my route, and told him to time me. And perhaps, by now I was maybe coming to terms with the fact that I hadn't done this in a very long time, and that there was a slight chance that I would need to walk. A little.
I walked. A
But, I can be strong again. I can bring my time down and maybe even add another mile in there. (In a month or two.) And perhaps, one of these days, I will run a 5k and really be able to, instead of saying that I could. Because right now, I couldn't.
So I ask those of you who actually run (instead of thinking they can), what is a good mile time? What should I be working for? That first day I ran/trudged a mile in 12:50. I was not impressed. Today, I did it in 10:48. I still have a ways to go, but what should I be gunning for? Do I hope to get back down to an 8 minute mile? Is that even reasonable at my age and laziness? A friend of mine was trying to finish a 5k in under half an hour, so I'm assuming I would have to get my mile time to under 10 minutes, right?
Anyway, it is very slow going at the moment, but make me accountable. I need to earn back a little respect for myself.