I just finished my first 10k race. For someone like me, whose only running experience is a few 100 m races in school (ok, I usually finished something like the second last and I only did it for the sake of some sports participation) and barely 1 km every now and then, half-heartedly, just to appease my husband, this 10k race, after 3 kids and in my 30s is something. This is how it all started…
About 5 weeks back, my husband Daniel had registered for a half-marathon and he was preparing for it. He has done this before. He mentioned to me that some of his friends had agreed to run a 5k, and that he was planning to run along. “That’s nice. Then may be, I can join too,” I replied casually, while serving lunch. My husband totally held on to that one comment, and he lost no time (literally!) in registering me for the race. Meanwhile, he also successfully talked me into making it a 10k, instead of 5. What had I agreed to? 10 kilometers!! Seriously? Me…. I am panting after running around our apartment block 3 times, which is hardly half a kilometer. Daniel was fully convinced (or at least he sounded so) that I could “easily” do a 10k. Come on, I haven’t ever run more than 3 km at one go.
But I was already registered for the race, and the money is paid, and the only way I am getting the T-shirt and the medal couriered to me is if I finish the race somehow. Oh, I want to make full use of the money. I can at least walk to cover the distance. I can manage it, I decided. Besides, I guess the opportunity to do a “virtual” run this year is more of a boon. We could choose the place and time. We only had to track the distance and time on the phone and submit it to the organizers. Like it or not, I’m in.
So, I looked up for training schedules on the internet, and chose one I could follow. It involves running practice 3 days in a week, including one day of long run, when the running distance increases by one mile each week. Other exercises and brisk walk were scheduled in for the other days. I liked the variety, so I started following the plan religiously. Just a couple of days into my training, I ate a big plate of noodles for dinner, right after which my head felt like it was spinning. My best guess, with Google’s aid of course, is that my blood pressure dropped low because of dehydration. Now, I had to watch what I eat and how much water I drink. But this running thing is asking for more. Anyway, that’s a good shift, I reasoned.
Daniel would always run with me on my practices, but he couldn’t come one day because of work. I had to find new company, and I decided to plug my earphones and listen to music that day. I discovered this was quite uplifting and took my mind off counting my rounds and how much more I had to go. Slowly, I was getting more involved in and acquainted to this new activity. There were days when I didn’t really feel up to it or my body was too tired. But Daniel always said, you can do this “easily”. Those words made a great difference to me. I think he meant it. 10k was too much of a distance for me to run, but he made it seem so easy. And just like that, I finished a 10k race, with Daniel running by my side.
Being an amateur runner, I have no running tips to offer. But there are two reasons I share this story. Instead of a Christmassy post on Christmas Eve. One, what you think as impossible might actually be possible. It could be anything you have always wanted to do. You just need to put your heart into it and try. To quote Daniel, “you don’t know what you are capable of.” Hey, a new year is a great time to start. Two, encourage someone to realize their potential. Daniel did this for me. You might be that nudge-giver for someone. As for me, I have done my bit in sharing this story, ha ha.