I laugh as I type this because for many of you the fact that a fitness trainer ran for a solid 8 minutes sounds silly. However for me, this is a PR (Personal Record for the cool folks who workout a ton) at this point in my life. I don’t run. My husband tells me I can’t really call what I do running, it’s more of a jog…and he’s right (the photo is very accurate). After 3 kids and 2 knee reconstructions, my
running jogging leaves nothing to be desired.
When it comes to my cardiovascular training, I will rollerblade the pants off of most and I am decently in shape for the step mill but running has always been a struggle for me. I grew up a short distance swimmer and a gymnast which do NOT require endurance. I think I ran a 5K race once. So why am I working on a PR for jogging? Because I was inspired by my 10-year-old son and my cardio workouts needed a kick in the pants.
My oldest is 10 and he is in his 4th year of tackle football. For the team’s conditioning they need to run 8 minutes at the end of some 2-hour practices in full pads. My son was at the end of the pack during this run for the first month of practice. I knew he could do better so I told him that I would start running with him from home to help him (us) train. What?!?, was my first inner thought. Did I really just say that? Yes, I did. I figure if he can run in full pads for 8 minutes after a practice, then I can suck it up through 8 minutes of jogging.
What is ironic about this goal is that I had to train for it. That’s right, my first “jog” interval out of the gate was a whopping 3 1/2 minutes. At least after a 2 minute walk I saved some face by upping the next interval to 4 minutes. My next outing was better yet as I went 4 1/2 minutes jogging, 2 minute walk then 5 minutes jogging. I even topped that workout off with a 1 minute hill sprint after a 3 minute walk. Now we’re talking progress.
It was this Monday when my son was home for the holiday weekend when I asked him to run with me.
“I need your cheering please” I said.
“Do I have to run next to you?” he says. Little booger.
We then geared up with music and one dog each. We warmed up with skips, leg kicks, high knees and bum kicks (this creaky body needs it). For most of the 8 minutes my view was my son disappearing in the distance (see photo), but I made it. I had a brief thought of only going 6 1/2 minutes but then I kept pushing to keep up and I went 8 minutes straight. Yeah me! My son gave me a pat on the back and we then worked our way back home with him doing sprint intervals and then waiting for me while I caught up with my jog/walk intervals of 2 minutes.
Part of me thinks this is great, I can keep increasing and maybe even run another 5K someday. The other part of me thinks I will complete this journey at 15 minutes straight jogging plus some intervals and call it a success. The great thing about being so inefficient at running is that I burn a TON of calories while doing it! Ha! If I trained to the point of being an efficient runner, I would have to run further to expend the same amount of energy you know. *Just being honest*
As I read this so far, I sound pretty lazy and out of shape. I’m really not, I still exercise quite regularly. I occasionally fall of the wagon just like everyone else. It’s just that I would much rather run stadium stairs or do box jumps or jump rope in intervals than jog. Heck, I’d rather do sprint intervals than jog.
But now I have a new way to hang out with my son (even if he’s running ahead) and one of my greatest joys is being active with my family so bring it on!
- Couch to 5K- Weeks 4 and 5 (thecrunchydelinquent.com)