For those who aren’t following me on Facebook, I’ve taken on the challenge of participating in the Pole, Pedal, Paddle next April. It’s a six part event. My part of the event is the five mile run and the half mile sprint.
I have NEVER been a runner. I plod along at a pace that’s hard to distinguish between walking and running, but I decided I could do this. Since I started running in May, I have gone from a 15
minute mile to last week a 9:35 mile.
Some of you might think I’ve always been committed to exercise, but that’s not true. It’s really only been in the last 10 years I really got serious about it. My original motivation for exercising was for weight control only, but also to stay healthy.
While I was active before, I wasn’t active enough. I rode my indoor bike every day, but I didn’t really get a strong workout. When I decided to make a lifestyle change, I started going to a kickboxing aerobics class where the instructor really gave me a workout. From there, I added mountain biking, cross country skiing, swimming, yoga and most recently running.
So maybe you’re wanting to get in shape, but you’re wondering how to start. Rebecca J. Clark, author of The Checklist Diet, and a trainer, says the easiest way to get active is to start walking.
“Anyone can walk. And with any exercise, remember not to go too fast, too long or too soon. Our joints need conditioning too, so even if you can run a mile on your first outing, it doesn’t mean you should. Your feet and knees will thank you,” Rebecca says.
Rebecca stressed, it’s important to listen to your body, especially when you’re just starting out.
“You don’t have to kill yourself. Focus on just getting your body moving 3-5 times a week, no matter how easy. Once you have that habit, then try to move and be active for 30-45 minutes each workout. Once you have that habit, then start pushing yourself to work a bit harder,” Rebecca says.
I’m a firm believer in the make or break a habit in three weeks. If I can stick with something for that long it becomes part of my daily routine. But I have to admit that for some things, like exercise, it took longer for it to really become ingrained in my daily routine.
I love this comment from Rebecca. “You didn’t get out of shape overnight. You won’t get back into shape overnight either.”
This is so true! And honestly, if I can do it, anyone can. All you have to do is start. Think of it like brushing your teeth. It’s just something you do every day.
Running is my thing right now, what’s yours?