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    STARDUSTD   42,775
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C25K wrap-up

Friday, August 06, 2010

Week 9: 3 miles

Ironically, it wasn’t until I ran Week 9, Day 1 last week that I seriously questioned whether or not I could finish this program. This wasn’t due to some sudden insecurity: “Can I really tack on that final quarter mile?” No, this was the dreaded: “I honestly don’t know how much more my knees can take before giving out on me.”

Day 1-Tues, 7/27:
I ran outside again, this time on asphalt for the first time. I ran the slowest I ever had up until that point, but I didn’t mind because it was my first time running a grade. My knees hurt for about the last 10 mins of my run but weren’t anything I couldn’t tolerate. The next day I did the recumbent bike and walked on the treadmill, and after that, BAM! my knees were incredibly unstable and painful for the rest of the week. I honestly didn’t know if I would be able to finish the C25K program.
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I took an extra rest day from the gym and did low-impact cardio for the rest of last week. After icing my knees heavily and popping some NSAIDS, I was ready for…
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Day 2-Sun, 8/1:
This time I went back to the hs track. I don’t remember my knees bothering me too badly during the actual run, but the top of my right quad felt tight and uncomfortable for basically the duration. My biggest concern was all the teenage boys that came onto the football field in the middle of the track right after I started running. They stayed until I finished my cool-down and were looking at me and laughing. I was listening to my ipod, so I don’t know if they were laughing at me (and it wasn’t going to stop me if they were); but I was paranoid. I wasn’t about to stop, but being fat and new to running (hence, out-of-shape and sloowww), I was very uncomfortable with the audience. Nonetheless, I plodded on.
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The next day, my hip, quad, and knees hurt so badly that I had one heck of a limp! I bought another knee strap, strapped it on as soon as I left the store, and within 10 mins my knee felt soo much better and my limp was gone. After talking to a trainer at my gym, I learned a new stretch to help my quad and hip flexors, and my leg felt ok after that. It still took a couple days until my knees felt up to snuff to run. At this point, I didn’t care that I wasn’t going to get all 3 runs in in 1 week. I wanted to finish without destroying my ability to *walk*.
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Day 3-Sat, 8/7
I wasn’t in much of a mindset to run today; I wanted to finally finish, though! I ran on asphalt again. It wasn’t as much of a grade as the first time but it wasn’t nearly as flat as I’d imagined beforehand. This was probably my most difficult run to finish.
~Things that were ok:
• The weather was great: 73 degrees, low humidity, a slight breeze, and a little overcast until about 10 mins in. (I actually did not appreciate the sun’s appearance at all. That part sucked a little)
• My knees were great: negligible pain while running!
• My muscles were ok: my legs definitely felt the grade, and they were tired from working out for the 4th day in a row; but I didn’t have any cramps or tightness while running.
~Things that sucked:
• I realized during my warm-up walk that I’d forgotten to put moleskin on the arches of my feet. My feet were rubbing against the shoes; by mile 1.5, I could definitely feel the blisters and they were NOT pleasant. These are going to take some effort to heal within the next couple days.
• My heart rate got absolutely sky-high. At one point I hit 92% of my Max HR running at or less than 5 mph. I slowed down to lower my HR but reached a point where it would be easier to walk than run that slow. I was VERY tempted to take a walk break but I wanted to complete it running the whole distance, so I just kept my pace after awhile so I wouldn’t be overly tempted to take a walk break.

I used all kinds of mental tricks to get through this run. When your heart’s ready to jump out your chest and your feet are literally being rubbed raw, you need something to keep you going.
But guess what? The mental tricks worked. I finished my 3rd 3-mile run. I am now a C25K graduate!
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Going into C25K, I don’t think I honestly thought I’d finish. I was terrified when I saw Week 5’s 20-minute run and thought, “If I make it that far, I certainly won’t get past that point.” I was doubtful that I could ever find any aspect of running enjoyable. Most of all, I didn’t think my knees would handle it. But as much trouble as my knees have given me, I ultimately ended up being wrong about all my doubts. To quote American Beauty: "It's a great thing when you realize you still have the ability to surprise yourself."
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUZEEEK 8/8/2010 1:04PM

    Way to go! I know completing my first 5KM run was a huge accomplishment. If you can run 5K, you can run 10K (it's true!) The sky really is the limit.

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MAGNIFICENTMAGG 8/8/2010 9:32AM

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