Sunday, 18 May 2008

battling on

it's been a struggle lately, & to be honest, i'm getting discouraged. it's not the fundraising - check out the total donations in the sidebar, it's amazing, & i'm absolutely astounded at just how generous everyone is being (& check out the prizes!)!! it's the running that's getting me down.
when i first started planning this whole thing, i had two goals - to raise as much money as i could for Cancer Research UK, and to complete the whole 5k of the Race for Life running (i'm using the loosest possible definition of the word "running", by the way!). at the time, i thought i knew just how big a challenge this would be. i'm not, & never have been, athletic in the slightest - i don't even run for a bus! - but i thought that if i built up to it gradually, i could manage to run the whole 5k by race day (8th june). but suddenly, i've only got three weeks to go, and i'm stuck.
for about the past three weeks, i've been stuck at twenty minutes. no matter what i try, or how determined i am, i can't seem to run for any longer than twenty minutes - and it's starting to get me down. every time i head out for a run, i'm convinced that this time, i'm going to make it - but every time i come back, it's after only being able to run for twenty minutes (or sometimes, even less) before having to stop. with the pace that i'm doing, twenty minutes works out to about 3k, so i'll probably need to be able to run for at least ten more minutes in order to finish the whole 5k - and at at the moment, it's looking impossible.
on one hand, i'm still impressed with my progress. just over three months ago, i was struggling to run for sixty seconds at a time, and now, most days, i can run for twenty minutes! it's a huge achievement for me, and sure, i should be proud of myself. but on the other hand, i'm really worried that i'm not going to meet my goal of running the whole 5k. and because i'm doing this whole thing in memory of my dad, there's a lot more invested in this than just trying to get fit - it's an emotional battle as much as a physical one some days. i remember how brave he was throughout his illness, and the incredible strength he showed - and i feel like i'm letting him down by not showing the same kind of strength, by not pushing myself harder to reach the goal that i've set.
i guess i need to think positive - after all, i still have three weeks to go. so i'll keep battling on, & i'll let you know how it goes...


roro said...

Twenty minutes!! That's seriously amazing. I'm so impressed!

As you said, you do have three weeks left - alot of good things can happen in three weeks and you've already accomplished so much. We're all cheering you on!! Go you!!

Helen said...

I don't know nothin' about running, but I wouldn't be surprised if plateaus like this are normal and that you will get past it. And if you don't, well maybe you shouldn't because you're not designed for it and anyone who thinks any the less of you as a result is a pratt. Doing the best you can is all anyone can expect of you and you're certainly doing that.

Flavaknits said...

Well Done you! 20 minutes thats fabulous. Just remember, Slow and Steady wins the race! (Me, I'd be 2 meteres in 20 mins! lol)

misplacedpom said...

I was trying to find the link to a running guide from my couch potato to 2omin running but I can't. What I seem to remember though is that once you reached the 20min point and graduated to the next class, the next class was actually three 10min runs with 1 or 2 mins walking in between. It might seem like a step down from running 20 non-stop but in the end you are actually increasing your stamina. Maybe it'll help to break the runs back down into bite sized chinks?

Keep going, you are doing fantastically :)

Liz said...

A mix of running and walking if definitely a good idea - you'll be really surprised at how much energy you recover after walking for a couple of minutes. If you stop running don't think "that's it" - just have a break and then try again in a moment or two.

Another tip I can pass on is to take a bus to somewhere which is 5k or half an hour away from your house. You'll have to get back there somehow and running will get you there quicker than walking.

Finally - you'll be amazed by what adrenaline and support can do for you on the day. It can give you at least a kilometre extra Distract yourself by looking around at the other runners and the people supporting.

Best of luck - I'm sure you'll do great.