It’s been exactly one month since I crossed the finish line of the WDW Marathon, and therefore completing the Goofy Challenge. It’s also been a month since I swore to everyone I know that I’d never run another step in my life.
The Goofy Challenge (for those that don’t know- that’s a half marathon and a full marathon on consecutive days) was challenging, difficult, and very painful. It even gave me a really flu or whatever with a 103 degree fever for a few days. If that’s what running did to me, I wanted nothing to do with it… ever again.
When I announced I never wanted to run again, many of my friends and running buddies jokingly said “yeah right, I’ll see you at Dopey next year.” (Dopey is 4 races in 4 days- 5K, 10K, half marathon, and a full marathon). Admittedly, I actually got a little ticked off. Did these people not hear me? No more running! Never again! Running sucks!
When I saw anyone on Instagram post an inspirational quote about running, I’d think to myself “what are they talking about? Running sucks.” I completely lost sight of why I even started running.
In the past several weeks, I really started to think about when I first started running and using the Couch to 5K program. It was in 2006, and I learned about it through an online message board. At the time, I was walking on a trail with my then-boyfriend quite often, and I was getting the itch to get back into running. I had been on the high school cross country team when I was a sophomore. I was never any good at running, but I wanted to get back into it.
At the time, the only option was to download the Robert Ullrey podcasts on to my second generation iPod. You could only run to the music programmed into the podcast, which was some weird trance music that didn’t really inspire me to run. It got pretty repetitive and boring. The first time (and second and third times) I tried the program, I would stop before the end of Week 5, which was a 20-minute consecutive run. It was just too scary to complete the 20 minutes in one shot. I don’t know what I was afraid of, but I quit nonetheless.
On my fourth shot, I officially graduated from Couch to 5K and felt accomplished enough to move on to a 10K program, which is when I found DJ Beatsmith’s Freeway to 10K program. After doing that, I decided it was time to finally sign up for a half marathon!
Side note- I lost 25 pounds while training for my first half marathon, and that’s another reason why I wanted to start over and get back to square one.
In the beginning of January 2010, I signed up for Disney’s Princess Half Marathon and officially caught the running bug! (Race Recap). Can you believe you used to be able to sign up just one month before the race? They sell out in days now!
So I wrote that long-winded essay to say this- I’m starting back at square one to discover what made me love running all over again. And it’s working.
I downloaded the Couch to 5K app from The Active Network (it’s $1.99), and I’m really liking the in-app music (you can listen to you own music while the app is on) and the voice commands telling me when to walk and when to jog.
So far this week, I’ve completed Days 1 & 2 of Week 1, and I must admit that I’m ready to take it all back now. I’m ready to pound out the miles again. I’m ready to love running again. And maybe come April 22, I’ll be ready to register for the Dopey Challenge.
Anyone else hoping to go Dopey in 2015? If you ran Dopey in 2014, drop a link to your blog post in the comments. I’d love to read it!