‘It can’t be almost February?’ I asked myself in disbelief. Already beginning the second month of the year was a frightful thought, especially seeing as I was still in my ‘taking-a-break-over-Christmas’ mode. The roses had been well and truly eaten, the Christmas tree had come and gone, turkey and ham dinners were a distant memory, yet I hadn’t laced up the running shoes in well over a month. Anyone else with me?
Definitely time to dust off the running gear and get back into it (before my body shape became a permanent indent in the sitting room couch)! In fairness, I haven’t been too lazy, I did start back at my circuit training classes on the 4th of January (and yes – I did feel the effects of every mince pie and turkey sambo). However, I just hadn’t quite mustered up the self-discipline to drag myself out for a jog. I find it much easier to get up and go to a class than I do to get out running. At least with classes you are committed and have someone there to motivate you, where as with running the motivation comes from yourself.
Anyway, the time had come. I bit the bullet and signed myself up for the Charlie Curran Memorial Run in Carlow on January 31st. I knew if I didn’t commit myself to something definite that the reality was it wouldn’t happen, and a 5k race seemed like the perfect way to get back into it. Better late than never!
I won’t lie, I was absolutely dreading the run. It had been so long since my last run that I’d gotten out of practice, and just wasn’t looking forward to it. None-the-less I dragged myself out of bed early on Sunday morning for a pre-run breakfast, took the runners out of hiding and pulled on my new ‘Leinster Challenge’ t-shirt. Lucky for me, there was a bunch of us from Embrace Fitness (my circuit class) doing the run, so I wasn’t on my own. I find running with a group a great support, even though we all run at our own pace and ability,! It’s fantastic to be surrounded by encouragement and to be able to cheer each other over the finish line (thanks Valerie, Wendy, Rebecca, Ciara & Trish!).
On Sunday I decided I wanted to run the first 1k without stopping but actually managed to run the first 1.5k, so I was over the moon with that! I walked/ran the rest, walking as little as possible and crossed the finish line with a time of 35.22 beating my previous personal best (not bad going for my first post-christmas run, even if I do say so myslef)! Plenty runners finished before me, and plenty finished after me, but most importantly I started and I finished! It felt great crossing the finish line (as it always does), and I’m glad to have gotten the first run of 2016 out of the way! I’m looking forward into getting back into a routine and getting out for a run at least once a week from now on!
If like me, you haven’t managed to get back into your exercise regime yet, stop putting it off! It won’t be as bad as you think and you might even get to experience that wonderful ‘I-can’t-walk-up-the-stairs’ feeling again (I know you’ve missed it!)