I’ve been a runner for about 7 years now, but never on a daily basis. I usually switch it up with cross training. When I saw the Memorial Day to Independence Day 39 day running streak, I decided to give it a try. In the interest of true disclosure, I have to say that I did not start the running streak til June 1st- but I did extend it to make for the full 39 days, so yes- you can bet your sweet Bippy I am claiming my badge! 🙂
As I have mentioned in previous posts, I’ve gained a lot of weight over the past 2 years, so for me to run daily was a challenge. That last statement was a big understatement!
Ok, back to the challenge: The rules were that you had to run at least one mile a day. I decided to do 1 mile on the treadmill running and then add in half hour on my elliptical for cardio on days when I was inside and then run a 5k (3.1 miles) outdoors on the other days.
Honestly, I found the 1 mile treadmill run harder than the outdoor runs. The belt on my treadmill is off, so it made it more challenging. And, on the first day – the treadmill blew a fuse. I did not let that deter me tho. I tripped the switch and kept going (as well as learned that I cannot have a dehumidifier, treadmill and TV hooked up to the same outlet). Don’t get me wrong, I was not embracing the outdoor runs either, especially the comments I would get on the canal path – such as: “Keep going, I used to look like you” – said by a trim racewalker who passed me. She meant well… sigh.
After doing this challenge, I learned two things:
1) I never want to do one again, or at least for a long time
2) I have a ton of respect for people who have kept up running streaks for years and even decades.
Overall, I am proud of myself. I do feel stronger and more in control. Not necessarily faster- at this weight, a slow jog is the best I can hope for. I’m still trying to overcome the shame/self consciousness of that, compared to how much faster I used to be. That being said, I ran every day – in humid, muggy weather – in wind – in driving rain and being the heaviest I have ever run (and the slowest). For the first 33 days, it really helped me stay on track with my food. I ate between 1300-1400 calories a day and lost almost 12 pounds. Then, the July 4th holiday hit – enter a get together at my brother’s cottage, yummy food, and a faltering motivation/willpower level. So disappointed with myself!! But, I have to get back on the horse and keep going.
Post challenge, I don’t plan to run every day, but I will try very hard to exercise every day. I also started a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) fruit/veggie share, so I have been eating lots of organic, fresh produce and trying new healthy recipes. The most important thing for me is to get a handle on my diet. I will never be a faster runner until I can shed this weight. Healthy, slim bodies are made in the kitchen and then refined in the gym. I read a statement similar to that – and I know it is true.
I do recommend a running challenge for those of you who have never tried it. It’s something new and different and may get you out of a rut. I would love to hear how long your longest running streak has been. And a big CONGRATS to all of you who completed this running streak. Post that badge proudly!
39 days of running 1 or 3.1 miles a day
Total distance covered: 72.54 miles total
June 1st – July 9th, 2013
Until next time, see you on the roads!