Note: Please read the title in Forrest Gump voice. Thank you.
Part of my trial-and-error workout program is doing what I think I will enjoy. My gut has been steering me towards running lately. Not sure where this instinct came from, but on my walks with my dog and kids, I’ve been feeling like, “I can do eet!” So I did.
I started slow, running behind Emma on her bicycle or in her Barbie Jeep. My older two came along sometimes, but mostly it was Emma, Chewie and me. I have an iPod Nano that will track my walks and my runs. The music helps me find and keep a pace. The first day, I ran sporadically, whenever Emma decided to go a little faster than a crawl. Every day, I ran a little more. Chewie, Emma and I all needed some practice coordinating who goes where and other logistics, but we have a pretty good routine down.
Well, we did. Emma just started Kindergarten yesterday. Now it’s just me and the dog, unless we go after school. After going on one previous run with just me and Chewie, I wasn’t about to run yesterday. Running without Emma to watch out for and direct allows me more time to think. If I’m not careful, I get all up in my head and forget to concentrate on how I’m running. Pretty soon, my shoulders are tense, I’m not breathing well and I’m feeling discouraged and negative and thinking on all things bad.
Here’s what I did today. When my brain started rambling, I checked in with my shoulders and loosened them up. I checked in with my breathing and made sure I was taking deep breaths and letting them out slowly. I keep my head up and looking ahead instead of looking at the ground. I made sure my chest was out, with my shoulders lowered and my tummy in. I’m not sure if I’m doing this running thing correctly, but these things all seem to make the going easier. Then, I just made a running loop in my head of all these things. Almost like meditating while running. Once you’re checking in with your body is automatic and something you don’t have to focus so much on, you go into your happy place.
When I get home, I stretch, take deep breaths and eat fresh fruit or veggies. I think it helps with any sore muscles I may have.
I’m up to a mile now. I only stop if I need to stretch something out, or if we have a situation (other dogs, Emma meltdown, etc.). I even pushed Emma on her bike, while running with Chewie and while she was screaming about her legs hurting. I feel you, Emma!
Next month, I’m playing on a rec volleyball team with my hubby. I cannot wait. I never thought I’d be able to play volleyball again. Like everything else I’m doing, I’ll stay positive, keep my head up with a smile on my face and remember to breathe. Shoulders back, check. Teeth unclenched, probably not, but that’s why I have to check. Take a deep breath in, let it out slowly. You got this.
Running soundtrack: So far I’ve run to Paramore, The Ting Tings, Panic At The Disco, Rihanna, and Young The Giant.