I am asked this question a lot. People who know me also KNOW there is no way I would enjoy running or anything related to it. Yet, I have been a runner for 1 year and 8 months and still seem happy to indulge in this activity solidly 4-6 times a week.
It all started with me being lazy. Yes, I am not kidding. I was thinking about activity that would involve the least amount of effort to “get to it”. Like to play tennis you have to buy a racket, cute little skirt, cute little top, cute little ball, etc. With running basically you have to put something on and go out for a run (at least in the early, pre-Garmin and what ever else is cool stages). That part I liked. What I didn’t like about running is the running part. I knew for a fact that every time I run I feel out of breath immediately and want to stop and never be a runner again. Also I knew thousands, even millions of people run successfully for longer than 30 sec and seem to do OK with that. A couple of ladies at work claimed to be runners and looked pretty normal to me, some of them were even a little overweight! That was encouraging and exciting at the same time. I downloaded a couch to 5K program to my IPhone, the next morning I told my mom we are going for a run and that’s how it started.
The main idea behind any program that teaches you to start running is to go through manageable work outs that increase in intensity as you move along. It also incorporates rest periods to recover and repair your muscles and joints. Previously I would decide to go for a run and just fun FAST for as long as I can. Needless to say I couldn’t run for longer than 1 min. With C25K the workout was 30 min long from the very beginning and seemed almost easy to do with all the run-walk periods that were measured just perfectly. The length of this program is 9 weeks. When you graduate you will be able to run non-stop for 30 min, pretty close to 5K distance-wise.
The answer to the question in the beginning of this entry is this: I became a runner with the help of C25K program as thousands of other runners did. The idea of going slowly never crossed my mind. Now I know slow takes you far, it takes you to a few half-marathons and I am sure a marathon one day!