At school, I was one of chubby boys who came last in cross country – I hated it, I felt like I was having an asthma attack and couldn’t breath. So having run the second 10k of my life this week in 45:35 the warm glow of satisfaction is mixed with a tinge of melancholy.
Having never managed to run all the way through a cross country course, I do harbour a slight ambition to go back to my old school and do it, for the closure.
So I hope you’ll forgive that in many ways this blog is more for me, as a note for posterity, than for readers.
I’m extremely competitive, love watching and playing sport, yet I’m not naturally athletic and have never been properly fit, for many years I ignored exercise, but as I’ve got older (and not getting fat has gotten tougher) working to try and keep somewhat in shape has become important.
In late 2008 I managed to lose a stone and a half in three months (see the do I really look like that diet plan blog) and while I’ve put on a few pounds since, a total change of diet (maybe three or four packs of crisps a month rather than a day) means it’s only a few pounds.
I’ve always hated running, but I know it’s one of the most effective ways to exercise. My limited attention span means I like to go as hard and fast as I can over a short time, so when I started a few years ago I used to run just 2km then moved it to 4km.
However my times have improved rapidly, so now, on a weekend when I’ve time (on a treadmill) I like to see if I can go further.
Recently, while on a weekend in Spain, I tried my first treadmill 10km, it wasn’t planned, I was aiming for 6km but felt good so kept going, ending up doing it in 49 minutes (see the P.S. in the Spanish Cash Machine blog).
This weekend was my second attempt and as soon as I hit the treadmill I knew everything felt right so settled in. Though I think the machine may’ve been on a tiny downslope thus diminishing the incline a touch.
Most pleasing was that at every metric I broke my record, e.g. I broke my 4k record at 4k, my 5k at 5km etc. I know this, because (as regular readers will be totally unsurprised by) my graph obsession means I have a graph of run times. It’s this self-competiting that helps me keep going.
For personal posterity purposes here’s this weekend’s times…
- 2km 8:06
- 4km 16:26
- 5km 21:09
- 6km 25:54
- 8km 35:25
- 10km 45:35
I wish I could show it to that little fat boy at school twenty five years ago – and tell him to try harder, you can do it!
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