I keep doing this to myself…
Flash back to March, I had just conquered my first mud run. Originally, it was supposed to be a 5k, but they tacked on some extra distance and it ended up being more like 4.5 miles. And I ran the whole way.
Feeling like I was on top of the world, I bit the bullet and signed myself up for something I’d always wanted to do but never thought I was capable of: a half marathon.
In college, when my fiancé and I were on the rocks, I had taken to running the loop around the campus, claiming running cleared my head; and I was really determined to like it.
The truth is, running just bought me alone time where I could ruminate on all the thoughts buzzing around in my head while clomping ungracefully along US-1, struggling to catch my breath. Granted, it got me in really good shape for Big Love, and I’m not sure I would have made it through that show as easily had I not trained my body for endurance.
I had always glamorized running in my mind. I saw long, lean, hard bodied women with toned arms and washboard abs, gliding gracefully like gazelles, glistening ever so slightly under the hot Miami sun.
That being said, I never really loved running. I thought I looked stupid. I couldn’t breathe correctly. I was really slow.
I tried to run with a friend of mine after the fiancé and I broke up, and I dissolved into a hysterical mess around mile 2.5, not because I was distraught from the break up, but because I was embarrassed at how slow I was compared to my friend, and because I felt like I couldn’t finish that day.
That’s the first time I thought I wanted to run a long distance race. I wanted to challenge myself to do something I didn’t think I was capable of.
So a whole year went by, and I ran off and on, but I never committed; I was still too scared of it.
Finally, I sucked it up and registered. It was supposed to be me and the director of the documentary, but he bailed out pretty early. Which just left me; alone. It would have been pretty easy to give up. But I trained hard. I did sprint intervals, and hills, and 8.5 miles in the hot Burbank sun. I got to a point where I thought my body could actually do it.
Until my body started breaking down. My bowel movements were irregular (tmi?). I wasn’t sleeping well. I was cranky, and achy, and everything hurt all the time. My bipolar swings were terrible; I put everyone through hell. The day before the race, I was advised not to run it. Once again, I dissolved into a hysterical mess.
Here I was: after a year of psyching myself up, and trying to turn into Miss Positivity, Miss Go-Getter, Miss Conquer Your Fears; I was being told that my body likely wasn’t capable.
And you know what I did? I said FUCK THAT. And I ran my first half marathon. At sub 2:30. And I felt great.
And then I stopped running. Just stopped. Sure I do Tabatas or other intervals on the treadmill sometimes, but for the most part, I just don’t feel compelled to run now that I lift so often. But I’m seeing myself gaining muscle and not losing the fat, so know I need a twinge more cardio in my life. Since I work part time at a running store, running seems like the logical step.
I know; I’m crazy, right?
The 10k is for a good cause and it’s a really cool route through the Universal Studios Back Lot. I think there are still a couple spots left if you want to run with me! I’m running a 9.36 minute mile right now, so certainly nothing to be intimidated by 😉
If you don’t like running, or aren’t in the area, you can also donate to the WeSpark Cancer Support Center; they’re pretty cool.