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Monday, March 29, 2010

I'm Done Running

This Saturday, the weather was nice and cool so Joe and I took off to the trail for a run. I hadn't run all week, spending my time instead preparing for the trip. However, the conditions were too perfect to pass up.

I was about half a mile in when I just decided I didn't want to run anymore. As in, not just for today. But anymore. Period.

When I started running again back in January, I was hopeful that maybe this would be the time I finally managed to reach my goal of a nice 5k. It's not a crazy goal by any means. I did okay until that guy ran over me with his pony, but then I lost my courage. And not long after that, I felt like my lungs were no longer able to provide my body with the oxygen it needs.

You see, I'm carrying a lot of extra weight right now. And running with that is frustrating. My pace and progress are far inferior to other times I've done the c25k program. And the more times I find myself frustrated and cutting short a run, the more I think of the calories I could be burning doing other cardio activities.

A wise woman (C. Beth) wrote a post almost a month ago that really made an impression. It was called "Do I Really Want That?" and encouraged readers to think about their "I'd like to..." statements.

I keep saying "I want to run" but do I really? I see the benefits that Joe derives from his running - stress release, peace, weight management - and I want those things. My biggest reason for doing any kind of exercise though is to lose weight - and running really isn't doing that for me.

At least, not right now. I stopped running on Saturday and talked with Joe for quite a bit on the long walk back to the car about why I didn't want to run anymore. He shared that he and his running buddies had a similar conversation recently about how none of them are interested in being elite runners - they just want to fit as many miles into their life as possible and enjoy it. Not everyone has the same goals. He's awesomely supportive - running with me when I want to, encouraging me to instead go to the gym if that will make me happier.

And so, after the trip, I'm heading back to the gym. I'm going to make good friends again with the elliptical. I'm going to spend quality time with my recumbant bike at home. I'm going to take long walks with my husband after dinner.

But I'm done running.


mo.stoneskin said...

Good girl, I'm done running too. Although to be fair, I've never done running. Apart from when I'm late for a train or trying to prevent the baby from covering the sofa with milk.

Melinda said...

Good for you! If you are not doing something that makes you happy what is the fun in it.

C. Beth said...

Cate, I actually think that's great. Running isn't for everyone, at every time. Maybe there will be a time in your life that's right for running--maybe not. But I think the point is that you are committed to working towards greater health. It really doesn't matter how you do that--and since you can get past the frustration of running by switching to other activities that are going to be effective, I'd say that sounds like a very good plan.

(And thanks for the shout-out.) :)

Cat said...

congratulations! for knowing what YOU want! I want to run again, wish I had a partner to help motivate me. :) Enjoy the gym!!

Rebecca Jo said...

Its definitely not for everyone... I am learning to be satisfied knowing i'm never going to make 8 minute miles - or heck, probably 10 minute miles... but that's OK... everyone has different things that work for them! Good for you for acknowledging that!!!

Brenda Susan said...

I have never been a runner & one of the things that has made me sure I don't want to do it is the faces of the runners I see on my way to work. They look like they are in agony! Why?
I exercise at home because I can't afford a gym. Seems like going to a gym regularly would be a great incentive.
Congrats on figuring out what you really want!

Donnetta said...

You need to do whatever works for YOU. If you make yourself run, you are just miserable, which defeats the stress relief. :)

Princess Andy said...

in the words of my son: "that sucks donkey nuts".


plus, your knees will get messed up:)

i say "yay elliptical". like those things...

<3 andrea

Eternal Lizdom said...

If you don't enjoy it, don't do it.

I'm new to the running thing and am shocked at how much I am enjoying it and even needing it. Actual got past a hurdle today (the 5 min time). I'm carrying a lot of weight but I have no running history to compare myself against so I don't know how bad I'm running because of my weight. Does that make sense? But I also know that I am making huge strides in the weight loss department- which isn't my goal but is a welcome side effect. :)

soulbrush said...

i can think of nothing worse than running, i take long walks with my ipod and audio books (as london is boring, no scenery), good choice!