The Day After

I woke up this morning feeling reasonably normal. Then I remembered what I did yesterday and a surge of pride ran through me – 13.1 miles is a big deal for me! Hell, it’s a big deal for ANYONE, but it feels particularly momentous for me. Let me explain:

Three short years ago, I weighed over 260 pounds, and couldn’t run to the bathroom without getting winded. After I changed my eating habits and lost some weight, I started walking for exercise. Then, in August, I started running, little by little, using the Couch to 5k program which was great, but I didn’t complete the whole thing. (Boo, former Kimberly!) By the time I ran my first 5k race on Mother’s Day, 2008, I still wasn’t able to run the entire thing.

I finally ran 3 miles straight outside – without walking – for the first time in September of JUST LAST YEAR. I then cranked up the training a notch to be able to do 5 miles on Thanksgiving, and then again to be able to do a 10k December 1. That’s still only 6.2 miles – which is a lot, but it’s a far cry from 13.1 – not even half!

It blows my mind how quickly I was able to progress once I finally gave it an honest, consistent try. And to think that I couldn’t do much of anything 3 years ago – Wow! This really is a huge accomplishment! My biggest physical feat to date. And I’m proud :)

Physically, I feel pretty darn good today, too. I thought I would hurt more, based on how terribly I felt immediately after the race. But no! I’m a bit sore today, but no more than I was the day after any of my other long runs. Honestly, the thing that hurts the most is the chafing I got under my arms and on my waist from my wet clothes rubbing against my skin for 2.5 hours. It feels better today than yesterday, though, so hopefully that will go away completely in relatively short order.

I’ve already been asked two questions over and over: if I’ll ever run a half marathon again, and if I plan to start training for the full now.

Will I ever do another half marathon? Probably, yes, but I’m not thinking about that just yet. For now, I’m going to bask in the glory of my latest triumph, and enjoy getting back to a more well-rounded workout routine. For many, many weeks now, I’ve just been running, running, running. I’ll continue to run, certainly, but will likely drop it down to 3 days a week and max out my long runs at 6 miles, instead of double-digit runs. That will leave more time to add back in a little strength training, something I feel like my body has really been missing. Hip hop is over now, too, so that will allow me to get back to my Total Body Workout class at the gym, which I’ve missed as well.

Do I plan to start training for a full marathon now? Hell no! That’s not to say that I’ll never do a full marathon – who knows what the future holds? Especially considering nine months ago I couldn’t run more than 3 miles… For now, though, that’s not in the plans. Training for the half took up a ton of time and was very challenging. Of course, I liked the challenge and I’m glad I did it, but to do double that distance? Wow. Not sure about that. I’d love to SAY that I’ve done a marathon, but I’m not convinced I actually want to DO one. We’ll see, though.

If it’s okay with you, I’m just going to sit back and enjoy my victory for another day before moving on. Because this was a huge win for me.

A Quick Note: THANK YOU to everyone for your encouragement and applause throughout the training process and then event! It means a ton to know that you care and have faith in me – more faith than I have in myself sometimes! Honestly, it has kept me going at times I’ve wanted to stop. So thank you. Give yourselves a big hug from me!

  • http://twitter.com/bodybypizza bodybypizza

    Enjoy your victory, woman! Besides, 26.2 miles is overkill. I literally cannot believe you didn't run your first consecutive miles until September of last year. That just blows my mind. MIND = BLOWN.

  • amandalsmith

    So impressed with your accomplishments!

    Kimberly, could you talk about when you first started running? I started the Couch to 5k program at 220 and found it too difficult. I'm now 208 and walk between 6 and 8 miles a week and am wondering if it will be easier to start again when I'm below 200.

  • Crista

    You're my HERO Kim:)!! :) GO YOU!!! Truly inspiring.

  • Kimberly

    Hi Amanda! First off, congratulations on losing 12 pounds! That's awesome!

    I wrote about how I started running a while back – here's a link for you: http://www.watermelonwaistline.com/2009/11/ive-

    You'll see that I started out very slowly. Just walking – in the house! – first. Have you tried Walk Away The Pounds? There's a link to it in that post. Depending on your current level of fitness, that might be a great thing to add in.

    Of course, since you're already walking 6-8 miles a week, you may not need that (though it's great for when the weather is bad or it's too late to go out or whatever). I don't think you necessarily have to wait until you reach 200 – it's more about fitness than it is about the number on the scale. C25K was really difficult – but it's supposed to be. If you don't go out of your comfort zone, you're not forcing your body to change. Maybe give it another try now that you have some walking and weight loss under your belt! If you can't do exactly what the program says, that's ok! Just repeat Week 1 for as long as you have to until you're ready to move on!

    If you have any other questions – please ask! And definitely keep me posted on how you're doing, both with the running and with the weight loss. I'd love to help you and follow you on your journey!

  • Kimberly

    Overkill, huh? That's basically what I'm thinking right now, too, lol! Your half is in 2 weeks, right? I can't wait to read about how awesome you do – you'll smash it :D

  • Kimberly

    Thanks, Crista! I do what I can ;)

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