I really thought I had given you up for good. But just when I thought I had moved on and let you go, you would get inside my head. Memories would pop up on Facebook. I would see posts from friends that would remind me of you and I would feel sad because I missed you so much.
Am I talking about a long-lost friend? An unhealthy food? An ex-boyfriend?
No, no and HELL no.
I’m talking about running. I “retired” about a year and a half ago after suffering knee arthritic pain. My knees have felt completely fine since giving up running and so I honestly thought I was done for good.
But I just couldn’t seem to stop thinking about it. While I have found other enjoyable workouts, there was nothing that could replace that feeling I got from running. I recently started thinking, “What if I just ran a little bit? How would it feel?”
A few weeks ago, I decided to do some run/walk intervals on the treadmill. The LIIFT4 program is only 4 days a week, so I thought I’d see what happens if I add some short runs on the treadmill on my recovery days. Just a couple of miles, or 30 minutes, of run/walk intervals.
It felt good.
No knee pain. Just enough cardio to get the heart rate up and sweat going. I’ve had three runs so far and honestly, I think if I can just keep doing the shorter runs, this is hopefully something I can do long term as part of my weekly workout program. I’m on week 6 of the 8-week LIIFT4 program and I’m considering doing another round since I’m continuing to love it and am starting to see some progression in my strength and muscle development. Adding a couple of runs to the weekly program would take things to another level, I think.
Mentally, picking up running again has been a game changer, though. Life always seems to have its ups and downs, but there are those times when my mind is racing 1000 miles per hour, my anxiety and worry are really high, and only running can seem to put my mind in a peaceful, more quiet place.
I’m really listening to my body, though, and am taking things nice and slow. I’m not even considering doing 5ks at this point. And I’m definitely NOT thinking about any longer distance runs. This is not about pushing my body to its limits. It’s about enjoying running simply for the sake of cardio exercise.
It’s so good to be back!