How Far I’ve Come

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There’s this hill on the trail where I ran today. It’s pretty big, and when I was early in my Cough to 5K training, I had to run up it near the end of a 2:00 run. I was going up the gentler side of it, and I had a walking interval just after that run that took me back up the hill on the steeper side. I couldn’t make it all the way up the hill, and it was the first half of my workout. I got within about 15 feet, and I just gave up. I hurt too badly, I couldn’t catch my breath, and I just wanted to stop.

Today, I started on the side of the trail where the hill is steeper (but shorter), and I needed to run up the hill after my warm-up walk. On the way back, I had to go up the same hill, gentle side (but long!), near the end of a 25:00 run. As I started up the hill, I hit the Power Song button on Nike+ and kept on going. My legs were tired, my glasses were so wet I could barely see anything, and I just wanted to get back to my car on the other side of this hill.

As I listened to “U Can’t Touch This,” I chugged my way up the hill, and finally reached to top — no walking at all! In fact, the only time I walked during that 25 minutes was when I was on a bridge behind a woman who was walking (with an umbrella), and I couldn’t get around her if I was to stay out of the street. So 0:10 of walking (aside from the warm-up and cool-down periods), 25:00 of running (yup, I ran to make up for that little walk).

And this is the result of my morning – take a look at that top line!

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If someone told me 2 months ago that I’d be able to do that and not feel horrible or want to die at the end of it all, I would have laughed in his face. And yet today I ran for 25:00, didn’t get a stitch in my side, and felt generally good the whole run (calf cramp at 8:00 in notwithstanding)!

I’m totally amazed at what I’ve accomplished.