Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Must. Keep. Going.

running by erickpineda527
running, a photo by erickpineda527 on Flickr.
I'm a self professed desk jockey. I'm no longer in denial. At 40-years-old with two small kids and a paunch I admit I let myself go. Whereas I used to enjoy a fast(er) metabolism a few years ago I've watched that steadily slow down. Meanwhile I've watched my friends fight the good fight and hit the gym regularly and stay active. I'm ashamed of myself.

Last Fall I got it in my head I would start to get more in tune with my aging bones and do something about my blood pressure, weight and overall health. Proud to say I stayed strong during the holidays with very little breaking of my goal and managed to lose a respectable 15 lbs. during the hardest season of the year. Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Eve, El's birthday and a variety of parties and other events never stood a chance. By simply watching what I ate, cutting down on salt and carbs, and drinking plenty of water (and cutting out sugary drinks) I was able to lose it. In January during my checkup I still had higher blood pressure, but my doc was pleased with my weight loss.

For my 40th El got me a treadmill and I would once in awhile get into a groove with it and stay on it for 2 or 3 weeks at a time. I admit it got boring and luckily Ron's Christmas gift of an iPad helped me get through it via Netflix. A couple of weeks ago my sister, Cher, coerced me to walk/run the Cooper River Bridge with her. What a shock to the system!

Six miles of steep inclines with a freezing headwind and a blown out pair of Nike AirMax's sent me a clear message. I needed to get more serious about the health regimen. Soon after I recovered from that run (I ached all over in places I never knew I could ache from) I took to the task of researching better running shoes based on what I felt during that run.

After spending almost an hour and a half trying on multiple brands and styles I settled on a pair of New Balances with the proper bounce in the heel, support on the sides and better overall fit. I was done with Nikes and shoes based on looks. I could give a rat's ass if my shoes were fluorescent orange and green with pink hearts on them if they fit well. Shins still ache on runs, but feels nothing like that first run on the bridge.

I've done well with trying to squeeze in a run almost every night after the kids are put to bed. The cold night air suits me. I'm alone (unless El joins me) and it feels like a good way to unwind at the end of the day and get some solitude. I know where my limitations are now (I'm not naturally a runner) and have adjusted my pacing to keep my heart rate up, but not kill myself (thanks Cher).

I don't think I'll be running the Cooper River Bridge like my sister and I imagine I will still slow her down this coming weekend, but pride be damned. I. Must. Keep. Going.

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