Despite the best efforts of my right knee, I have yet to give up my dream of running on a regular basis. It helps that I’m heading to the lakefront to run and bike and (eventually, maybe) start rollerblading again. No offense, Brookfield, but your sidewalks? Not the most scenic venues around.
There are a few things I’ve learned that might help me this time around, as opposed to my other ventures into actually trying to exercise regularly.
1. It’s ok to walk some. I used to think if I wanted to run, say, 3 miles, I could only consider the mileage before I stopped for a rest. If I ran for 2 miles, stopped, then ran for another mile or two, I only considered that a 2-mile run. Doesn’t make sense. I’m counting all my miles walked/run/biked as my “workout”.
2. I’m trying to plan my routes in a straight line. No more loops. Run as far as I can without stopping, then turn around and head back home. If I’m tired, I still get the walking distance in back to the house. And so far, I haven’t gotten caught in the rain. Or snow.
3. Water is my friend. Drink more.
4. Since water is my friend, I need to make sure I go before I go. Two blocks in is not the time to realize…well, you know what I mean.
5. I’m not going to get cut/waived/benched/booed/traded. I’m not training for the Olympics. So take it easy. I am a jogger, not a runner. I don’t need to push myself beyond simply trying to add a little more distance. While running may never seem like “fun” to me, it doesn’t have to be torture either.
6. The running shoes leftover at the Nike Outlet aren’t necessarily the best shoes for my feet. One of these days I need to get a real analysis and fitting for good shoes. Feet do weird things when you put them under that much force and pressure. Christmas, guys. I told you I’d get you new shoes for Christmas.
7. Staring at the ground isn’t entertaining. What is entertaining is music. I’ve discovered the joys of the iPod. Sometimes a song comes on and I fall into a good rhythm with the music, but it’s more about having something to pay attention to besides the cracks in the sidewalk. It really does take a lot of the drudgery out of it.
Now, here’s the part where you can help:
DailyMile.com is the site I use to keep track of my distances and days I actually run or bike. There’s a nice map site that let’s you trace your route for exact distance. If you’re a jogger, runner, cyclist, or rollerblader, sign on and join me. I could use the encouragement.