I've never been very fond of exercise. When I was a kid, I’d prefer staying inside with a good book over running and playing outside. I did participate in several sports when I was younger like soccer and softball, but I didn't like them. As I grew to be an adult, I found myself moving around less as most of my jobs had me sitting at a desk all day. I've tried all kinds of fitness programs and apps for weight loss, but none really worked for me until I started Couch to 5K.
Couch to 5K is a program for people who lead a sedentary lifestyle. It eases you into running and starts out slow. During the first week, you alternate jogging for 60 seconds and walking for 90 seconds. From there, each week has you running a little longer with less walking in between.
I started Couch to 5K a few years ago when I first heard of it. My daughter was still a baby and I was a stay at home mom. I got a fancy jogging stroller and tried really hard to get started. But what derailed me was trying to juggle a stopwatch to time how long I was supposed to run while driving the stroller. It was very difficult and I didn't even get past the first week.
Last fall, I found a Couch to 5K app so I decided to give it another try. I started in last August by running up and down my hallway because it was far too humid in North Carolina to start running outside. I use the C25K app on my Android phone, which works really well because it tells me when I should start and stop running. I did find that my hallway isn't long enough to really simulate running because I was mostly just running sprints. I started over on the treadmill after feeling like I was going to pass out at my previous week. I'm slowly working my way through the weeks again.
Running has been a challenge because I’m really out of shape, but I feel great once I’m done, and I’m getting more fit as I continue with the program. My first goal is to run a local 5K by the end of the year. My big goal is to run in one of the 5K races at Walt Disney World. I have a friend who runs in a lot of the Disney races and it looks so fun. Lots of people dress up in special costumes designed for running. There are even Disney characters along the race route that runners can stop and get their picture with, so it makes it more fun than a regular 5K. I’m really hoping to be able to do one of the Disney races at some point.
I never thought I’d be a runner, but it’s easier than I thought it would be thanks to Couch to 5K. It can be a challenge because of my chronic pain issues to take on course. But I'll talk about running and chronic pain in a future post.