Saturday, July 5, 2014

We did it!

We did it! The dog (who was a willing but unwitting participant), Mr W and I completed our first 5K yesterday. This is shortly after the finish. He finished a couple of minutes ahead of me, but my one and only goal was to jog the whole thing without slowing down to walk. It's all kind of relative because my pace is slow and I can walk almost as fast as I can jog. No matter - I jogged the whole 3.1 miles, in about 38 minutes :-).

Come to think of it, the dog was pretty much briskly walking the whole time as well. But she's still a tired pup, so I'm sure it was a big deal for her too. She's been along for the whole training thing for the last nine weeks, and I imagine has also gotten in better shape. 

This started ostensibly as something we were doing for the kid, as I mentioned previously, but has become a thing I really want to do. I was going to quit after a couple of weeks because my back and hips would get so stiff at night, while I was in bed, that I thought I was injuring myself. 

Rewind to 1992, when I worked as a camp counselor and during the first day of camp, was chasing another counselor during a game of Capture the Flag and fell just so, dislocating my hip with such force they had to do surgery to remove a ligament that had torn. I was never a regular exerciser until I was in my mid-40's (I know, I know) so I only had youth and not any kind of strength from an exercise regimen on my side.

Anyway, I remember them telling me that I shouldn't do downhill skiing (check, no problem) or sit with my legs crossed, which I have taught myself to do. The problem with babying the injury site for all these years is that my hips are TIGHT. So when we started running nine weeks ago, I didn't know if the hip would stand for it or not. Having the pain after a couple of weeks made me think I was going to have to pass.

As a mom, I could see that the kid just might really take to this running thing if I could help him a bit over the very beginning part. This has happened - woot! - he wants to see how good he can get at it. So one day around two weeks into it, I had the bright idea to go to a Saturday yoga class. Maybe I could begin to loosen up and it would help. I dutifully put on my stretchy black pants and went off to the 4:30 class.

That class has always been at 4 pm, and I have shown up at 4:30 about three times. Oh well. This motivated me to go to the library to get a couple of books on yoga. I also searched online for "hip openers" and long story slightly shorter now have a set of five stretches I do daily that has helped tremendously.

I still get sore, and I still have to take some Advil occasionally, but the stretching really has been a game changer for me. The cool thing about this is that my body has given me what I've asked of it. I don't have aspirations to go for much longer than 30 minutes when I jog, and Mr W's cross country races are two miles (about 18-22 minutes when he gets better at it), so we'll concentrate on getting better at those distances/times rather than pushing for more more more.


  1. Wow and congratulations! You deserve to feel very proud of yourself. I'm going to do the "hip openers" search to find your 5 exercises as I've NEVER been able to even sit cross-legged because something in my hip region doesn't work right. I know I should try a yoga class again for stretching out my whole body (!) but have been terribly put off by a bad experience with a beginners class I took a few years ago with my daughter and the instructor was so over-enthusiastic ("Stretch it out more! You can move those feet farther apart! Come on now, put some work into it!!") that both of us felt we were going to injure ourselves and quit the class.

    P.S. Who is that TALL kid by you? And when did that happen?!

    1. Agreed. An entire class at this point would still be too much for me. I've really liked the "ankle to knee" pose on this page, and also the "reclined cow face", although I do it sitting up. It stretches out my back as well and feels divine. I especially like how they say to hold the poses for five breaths, as this makes me focus on breathing and I breath deeper for the duration of the stretches.

      Thanks for the congrats.

    2. Oh, yes, and Mr W has been on a steady climb in height the last few months. 5' 10" and counting...

    3. Whoa! Mr. W has grown! Yoga is the best way to get your flex back - unfortunately for me, all the classes are during week days. Good for you to get yourself into running. From what I have heard, it makes you feel so great.


Hi, sorry to make the humans do an extra step.