Since trying to jog 400m completely and totally humbled me at CrossFit, I’ve decided to embark on the Couch to 5K program. You have to understand, first, that I’ve always railed against running as a fitness activity. I think it’s horrible and awful and I really, really hate it. My best friend runs marathons, and I think she’s nuts. My eyes glaze over when people start talking about running shoes or paces or heart rate monitors.
Yet here I am. I realized during that 400m jog/walk that this would be a good way to build up some endurance. I don’t have to become an ultramarathoner or even a “runner,” as such; I can run for the fitness benefits as an equestrian.
So Saturday I spent a while talking myself into actually going and doing this thing. I downloaded the RunDouble C25K app free trial, put on my crappy old beat up New Balance shoes (very thin sole — I cannot deal with thick-soled shoes), and headed out to find a trail. I didn’t want to run around my block, because my block is a giant hill. Turns out there’s a nice gravel trail in the woods nearby. There’s a heck of a steep descent, but then there’s a fairly flat section that I used. I did the warmup and then 5 of the 8 training intervals. I quit early because I knew I had to get back up the hill to get out, and I didn’t want to totally wear myself out. On reflection, I should’ve just finished it and then rested a bit before climbing up if I needed to. That’s what I’ll do next time.
So I’ll be repeating day one, which is a five-minute warmup walk, then alternating 60 seconds of jogging with 90 seconds of brisk walking for 20 minutes. The app gives you audio cues, which is great, and also uses GPS to track your distance and pace. I will be buying the full version for sure.
One thing I need is a better pair of shoes for trail running. I’m already a fan of minimalist footwear, since I get nervous if I can’t feel what I’m walking on. I broke my foot a while ago and just getting used to walking again took a while. I’ve wanted to try Vibram Five Fingers for a long time, and this may be my excuse. I’m going to go check them out in person on Monday or Tuesday.
If I can, I want to do the program on trails, because I really need to improve my balance and agility. Running on nice smooth pavement isn’t really going to do much for that. We’ll see if I’m able to make it there consistently.
If you want, you can see the log of my first day of C25K; keep in mind that I skipped the last several intervals, so the overall pace is seriously messed up. It’s really neat, though!