Wednesday, December 7, 2011

I LOVE running…wait, what?!

Until about a year ago the thought of running for even more than five minutes made me sick.  I would step on the treadmill, walk about 10 minutes and then start running.  After about five minutes I would huff and puff, try to catch my breath and then slow to a walk.  Yes, this is what I counted as my exercise.  Pretty sad, huh?!
I’m sure most, if not all, of you have heard of the Couch to 5k Plan. Well, I hadn’t until one of my good friends shared this AMAZING plan with me earlier this year.  After reading a bit about the plan and tons of the success stories, I figured why not give it a try.  What did I have to lose, right?  Thank god it is based on the premise that you must ease into running gradually.  The first few segments of running were definitely a challenge, but after nine weeks I was able to run three miles – woohoo!!  Let me tell you running for 30 minutes is something I NEVER thought I would be able to do.
Running must have made me delirious because after I finished Couch to 5k I had this fabulous idea to sign up for a 5K Mud Run.  I recruited my brother and a friend to participate with me.  It didn’t take much to talk them both into it, especially after I told my brother I would pay for him to run in the mud.  Wouldn’t you be psyched to have someone pay you to run in the mud J?!  The particular run we signed up for was the Merrell Down and Dirty 5K Mud Run – Operation Gratitude.  It was a three mile off-road course filled with 8 military like obstacles, commanding cargo climbs, wild water crossings, mud, mud and yes more mud.  Also, throughout the course there were military personnel yelling cheering you on. 

This is what we looked like at the start of the race.  Don’t we look all nice and clean?

Well it only took two and a half miles before we looked more like this.  We were dirtier; however, they had us run through the ocean, which helped to clean off all of the mud we had caked on us during the first two and a half miles.   

And then the last obstacle was the mud pit.  You had to go through this pit on your stomach or else you were yelled at – no joke, can't you see them yelling, cheering us on?!

So, of course we got on our bellies and treaded through the mud pit and ended up looking like this J.

We all had SO much fun and couldn’t stop talking about what we were going to do next.  Seeing as though my brother (he could run circles around me) and my friend (who ran the Boston Marathon) are avid runners to say the least, I knew I would have to step it up for the next race.  Last week I started the Bridge to 10K program.  I am on my second round of the first week (I wanted to ease myself back into it) and I’m already running 9 minute miles - a personal best for me!!  I can’t wait to get on the treadmill and run more tomorrow – I LOVE RUNNING! 

Has anyone completed in the Couch to 5K or Bridge to 10K? 
Has anyone particpated in a Mud Run?

- Rachael -

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