The Beginning

In March of 2011 I had to go dress shopping.  I really had no idea what size I was so I took a bunch of different options into the dressing room.  I found one dress I liked but they only had it in a size 16.  I thought that will be way too big, but I will try it on anyway.  It fit perfectly.  I thought ok, it’s not so bad.  I like it, I look fine in it, and I brought it home.  Then a few weeks later I saw a picture of myself in this green dress and I was horrified.  Why does a picture look so different than your reflection in a mirror? It was a moment like this.

There is a little green belt park right by my house and I decided to start walking there to get some exercise.  Once around the loop is a half mile.  I was mildly strolling around the loop, while patting myself on the back for getting out there, and planning what to eat later to treat myself for burning so many calories.  I mean I had walked 2 miles, I thought that was some serious calorie burning right there.

I looked up and saw two of my friends who I hadn’t seen in a while appear in the distance.  They were running.  I watched them get closer and closer and they stopped to say Hi.  They looked fantastic.  They had both trained for and run their first half marathon a few months ago and were planning their next race.  At that time I didn’t even know how long a half marathon was.  When I heard it was 13.1 miles, I looked at that loop and thought about running around it 26 times and I was in awe of them. 🙂

I decided walking wasn’t going to cut it and I was going to start running too. I had tried to run at the gym on the treadmill in years past but never got very far. This was the first time I had ever really thought I should run outside.   I went out the next day to see how far I could make it.  After 1/4th of a mile I almost passed out.  A few days later I ran 1/2 mile.  I think it took me about 7 minutes.  I sent this email to my friend.

Hi Juli,

Will you direct me on where to go to look for a schedule of how to train to start running. I love running outside, it’s so much nicer than the boring treadmill. I want to start doing it as much as possible before the weather gets crazy hot. I went a whole half mile today without stopping, which I’m sure makes you smile and want to pat me on the head and say “Way to go little tyke!”  It’s a start. My current plan is to run until I feel like I’m going to die and then walk. It would be nice to have something a little more organized to follow. What did you do when you started? Thanks for any help!

She was so supportive and encouraging.  I kept going and adding a little distance each time. I still wanted to die at the end of each run but I did it anyway.  A old man on a rascal scooter passed me on the street and I seriously considered scooter-jacking him and racing away on it.

To celebrate national running day in June of 2011 I took advantage of a sale and signed up for my first half marathon in January of 2012. I had worked my way up to 5 miles by then.  I was a little in shock that I had just payed $70 for the privilege of running 13.1 miles.  I am cheap so I knew if I payed for it, I was going to train for it.

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