October 31, 2008 at 7:44 am
I had intended to run for 20 minutes but decided 18 minutes was good enough because otherwise I’d be scraping my lung off the carpet after I threw it up. I was a little disappointed with myself. It was only 6 months ago that I ran a half-marathon and now I am struggling to run a half-5K. If you don’t use it, you lose it, unless of course we’re talking about weight, in which case you gain it.
“I don’t know how you do that,” said the 50-or-60-something man who was running on the treadmill next to me in my apartment’s exercise room. In light of the current economic crisis, I’ve decided to ditch my YMCA membership and use my complex’s resources instead. I’ll just have to cross my fingers that no one is using the elliptical machine when I want it and remind myself that a little patience will save hundreds of dollars a year.
“I don’t know how *I* did that,” I replied as I stepped off the treadmill to stretch. I’d interspersed my running with walking and I’d probably faked him out a few times thinking I was done with the good treadmill as he had lifted weights.
“It takes a lot of determination,” he said. “When you get to be my age, you can’t run like that anymore.” It turns out my neighbor ran the Indianapolis Mini-Marathon five times. “I never broke two hours though.”
“I could only DREAM of breaking two hours,” I replied. We had a nice little chat as I finished stretching, which was pleasantly odd because most of my neighbors seem to actively avoid conversation or eye contact. “Well, I’m going to take a shower,” I said as I put on my coat.
“Keep up with it!” He said. I no longer felt disappointed, but proud of myself. I may not be able to run a half-marathon right now, but I can run for over a mile. I’m not in the best shape I’ve ever been in my life, but I’m still in pretty good shape. It was good to be reminded of the positive when it’s so easy to focus only on the negative. And I’m going to keep up with it.