Sunday, April 10, 2011

No Wonder Runners Don't Smile

Running is hard! I have no clue why anyone would voluntarily run.

I say this as a fairly fit person who racewalked nearly 4.5 miles yesterday at a good pace. I say this as a person who has racewalked two full marathons and about 25 half marathons -- six halves last year.

But I need to be able to run 3 miles in June. My family, friends and I have entered a race called the Warrior Dash. Because of the nature of this obstacle course race, I feel I should run it as opposed to racewalking it. (Seriously, I think racewalking to a climbing wall would look a little bit silly -- and I'm used to looking silly.) We have 8 weeks to get ready.

So, when I got up this morning, I put on my cushiest running shoes and went out the door. I walked the 2 min it takes to get to the "big block," hit my stopwatch and started jogging. The plan was to go as far as I could, walk for 1 min, then repeat.

When I was huffing and puffing and I thought my heart would burst, I hit my stopwatch and stopped running. -- 2 min and 51 sec. That was it? I ran for only 2 min and 51 sec? If I had been running as fast as my son, that would have been half a mile. Unfortunately, it wasn't even half a block!

After a minute of walking I wasn't ready to start up again, so I walked another minute. This time I ran for only 1:14 before I had to stop. Slap of reality here -- I had been overly ambitious. I was not going to be running for several minutes and resting for only one. I was going to have to start from scratch just like any other non-runner and run for 1 min and walk for more. (I think this officially makes me a Galloweenie*!)

I continued with something close to running 1 min, walking 2 min until I had gone around the block twice. I ran/jogged for a total of only 8 min and walked for 18 min.

What I like about running is that I cover more ground. Even jogging at this slow pace, I'm faster than when I racewalk outside. (On a treadmill, I was able to racewalk as fast as this jog.) Maybe I can eventually walk faster than I can jog. That would be great!

What I don't like about running is the pounding. I feel like a several ton elephant every time my foot hits the ground -- huge, heavy and not very graceful. Does that ever go away?

*Galloway is a running guru who trains people to run/walk long-distance events. When you are near them during a marathon or half marathon they are extremely annoying! It never fails, a group of them will jog past you then suddenly stop running inches in front of you and walk very slowly. At that point you are moving must faster than they are, and you either run into them or have to go around. After a minute or so, they pass you again, get slightly ahead of you and stop -- again! This leap frogging will continue until someone gets far enough ahead of the other to stop it.

Dave McGovern calls them Galloweenies.

1 comment:

Wendee said...

Cindi - I had to laugh! It took me a lot of miles to get to where the running part of my run/walks were something I actually looked forward to. It gets better, your feet feel less like blocks. Yes, the belly jiggle *is* more noticeable than when you walk, but you also notice the weight loss more keenly, too. ;-)

I'm not exactly a runner (still run/walking), but I wanted to say that runners *do* smile. Then I came across the official photographer's photos from my last two races. I have to admit: the photogs caught me grimacing in the first race. The photos from the second one were somewhat better - still no smiles, but I look what you might call determined. I guess that will have to do for now...

I guess that makes me a Galloweenie, too.