May 08, 2009

Couch to 5k

I have never been a very good runner. It was tennis and basketball for me during high school and I stayed as far away from the track as possible. Something about torturing your body to get to the same place you just were didn't register with me.

My best running experience came in high school with my friend David Cour. He ran on the cross-country team and somehow we got it in our minds to run the Seattle Seafair 10k. The race took place right before the annual parade on the same route and I remember all the people lined up for the parade cheering us on and how great a feeling that was, almost propelling me to beat Dave to the finish line. Almost, but not quite.

My worst running experience took place at the Seattle Seafair 10k. Same day. Same race. After crossing the finish line, I could barely move, cold sweating profusely, lost my lunch, previous day's dinner, lunch and breakfast and swore I'd never run again.

So that brings me to now. I am not in the kind of shape I'd like to be in. The city tennis tournament last year proved that convincingly. My love for cooking is not helping my situation. So, rather than cut back on the cooking (out of the question), I'm going to get in shape! Our friend Arlynda shared a program on her blog called "Couch to 5K" which is exactly what it says. It takes you from no exercise to running 3 miles in just 9 weeks.

I started the program earlier this week and found it was not as difficult as I thought it would be. The first workout took just under 30 minutes and I covered 1.7 miles. And the way it is structured, I wasn't sore afterwards and I wasn't sore the day after. I don't plan on being a competitive runner like many of my other friends but I do plan on getting healthier. We'll see if I can keep this up and make the 3 miles. If I stay on track, I'll be there by the 4th of July.

If anyone else is interested, below are the resources to help.

1. The link to the website with the Couch to 5K program.
2. The link to the website with podcasts for each workout. These are very helpful as they give you step by step instructions with music in the background. It made the workout very easy as I didn't have to focus on when to jog or walk and could just focus on breathing and not falling off the treadmill!
3. Below is the full program adapted from the website that you can print out.

Happy trails!