I have been working towards actually running a 5k for several years now. It’s been a start/stop type of endeavor. Being a Mom, homeschooling, meal planning, cooking, laundry…well, everything came before running. Or excercising. I hate working out. I always have.
In 2011, I made it a goal to run in an organized road race. I didn’t make it due to the house selling and schedule conflicts while Party Boy was in school, but I did register for a race this coming February.
I am not in the best of shape. I have never been athletic. So I knew I would need a gradual introduction to the world of running. I’d heard of Couch to 5k programs from several different sources, but wasn’t sure it would work for me. After some hemming and hawing, I decided to give one a shot.
I hated it. I had to watch the timer on the treadmill and try to remember when to switch from running to walking. It was tedious and distracting. It made a workout that I wasn’t enjoying that much worse. I started putting the workouts off. Then I quit altogether.
Clearly this was not going to be easy.
There’s an App for that
I was using Nike+ on my phone to track my excercise, but had limited myself to just walking. On a whim, I did a search on a couch to 5k app. I don’t know why I was surprised to find one (or many) as there are apps for just about everything these days.
What makes Run 5k my choice for training is that it tells me when to walk and when to run, gradually working towards running for 25 minutes straight. No more timer watching or distance guessing for me. I can listen to music or podcasts and the app will beep, then instruct me to run or walk. It also alerts me to the halfway point and when there’s one minute left.
Every workout starts with a 5 minute warm-up before starting the run/walk portion of the workout and ends with a 5 minute cool-down. Best of all each workout lasts only 30 minutes. This makes it easy for me to fit in my workouts 3 times a week. I know that I can sit at my computer for a half hour, or get up and run. And somehow, I never regret that 30 minutes on the treadmill.
This app also wins points from me because it will run in the background behind my Nike+ app, so I can keep track of my cumulative mileage and achievements. I love hearing Paula Rdcliffe or Dirk Nowitzki congratulate me on my run, a new record, or just for going out and exercising.
I still dont love running, but using an app does make it easier to track my progress and keep up with training. Maybe someday I will come to that magical place where working out is fun. Until then, I plan to keep putting one foot in front of the other.
I am working towards creating a healthier lifestyle in 2012. See all of my posts here.