Friday, March 19, 2010

C25K and Me

Well, after lots of talking about what I'm doing with my children in our homeschool, I've decided it's time for a post on something I'm working on! The newest learning experience in my life is J and I deciding to undertake the C25K challenge. Since neither of us has ever been into running (or anything even close to it), this was a BIG step for both of us! When J first told me several months ago about the concept of C25K and mentioned that he was considering trying it, I was really skeptical that anything could turn ME into a runner. In short, I scoffed.

I couldn't stop thinking about it, though, and I started reading everything I could about the program. Somewhere along the way, I realized that 5K isn't really as long as I always thought it was, and the idea of disciplining myself to do something I've never done before was definitely appealing. Once we decided to do it, it has actually been very exciting! We've both been amazingly successful in rising early and completing our workout for the past two weeks, and we still feel motivated to continue. Here are some of the reasons I think this is working for us:
  • We're doing it together. I can't count how many times I've begun an exercise program (though never running before!) and then just kind of gradually let it slide. I definitely have motivation issues when it comes to working out! Since the C25K program is built on a 3-days-per-week schedule, we can alternate mornings (and both take Sunday off). I honestly don't enjoy exercising with other people, but there's just something about both of us doing the same workouts (though on different days). This kind of support has made ahuge difference for me, and for J, too.
  • Our kids know we're doing it. The ask us each day, "Was this your day to run?" and "How did it go?" It has been fun for them to see us learning something new, too--especially something that isn't easy for us. This is especially motivating, since I can't imagine expecting them to keep working on things that are difficult for them if I can't do it myself!
  • We found a great iPod Touch app. One of the reasons I was hesitant to try this program was that I had envisioned having to use a stopwatch to gauge each section of the workout. Thankfully, though, we came across this great app for the iPhone/iPod Touch. This program simplifies the entire training process--not only does it help you track your progress through the pre-set workouts, but it serves to cue you during each actual session. You can have iTunes playing in the background with whatever audio you choose (I prefer podcasts), and a pleasant voice tells you to "run" or "walk" or to begin your cooldown at the appropriate times. I seriously cannot imagine trying this program without it!
  • The program itself is brilliant. One thing that's difficult for me in many areas of my life is pushing myself too hard too fast and burning out. This program is specifically designed to keep that from happening, and it is geared toward building up endurance gradually.
  • Even after only two weeks, we've seen progress! I will freely admit that I really struggled on the first day of trying this program. Due to all the reasons listed above, though, I kept going. As I completed each session, I found myself covering more distance in the same amount of time. More important to me, though, is the fact that I have felt significantly more able to sustain each run on each succeeding day. This has been amazingly motivating to me, and my husband reports a similar feeling.
Although I never thought I'd say this, I really am looking forward to continuing this running program. I would recommend the C25K challenge to anyone, and someday, when our kids are older, I will definitely be recommending it to them as well!

1 comment:

Renae said...

Congrats! You went from being a skeptic to enjoying it. You've conquered! I'm going to check it out. Cute pics of the kids btw. :)