Sometimes my crazy idea of taking up running doesn't seem like it's getting anywhere. The progress, which started out rapid, has been very slow these last couple of months, and in fact has seemed nonexistant for weeks at a time.
Sometimes I don't run as often as I should; my goal is three times a week but I am a homeschooling mom of eight and there have been weeks when I was lucky to get one chance to run.
Sometimes I think I am pushing myself too hard. I am a homeschooling mom of eight who is nursing twins, for heaven's sake. I can't waste all my strength on exercise.
When I run, I pray for the help of heaven to encourage me and help me keep my thoughts positive and also to help me know when I am really overdoing it. These prayers work.
I know I need heavenly help because I know this is really important right now, and it's hard for me. I feel very driven to improve my health and stamina at this time, even with all I have on my plate. This is not easy for me for so many reasons, and there are a lot of negative voices in my head that encourage me Not to run, or make me want to hate it while I am doing it, and then stop as soon as possible. So I pray for help, and it comes as gentle encouragement while I trot along.
Last Friday I did something that for years of my life I would have thought was impossible. In fact I don't know that I have ever done it before, even as a child. I jogged an entire mile without taking a walk break. It took me more than four months of training to be able to do that, but it finally happened.
Today I did it again. It wasn't horribly hard. In fact, I rather enjoyed it. My time was 13:10, which isn't much faster than my mile time has been for awhile now, walking probably a third of the distance. So I was jogging even slower than usual, and my usual is already slow.
But knowing that I can sustain even a slow jog for that distance is so empowering to me. If I keep at this, it really will happen that someday I will be able to run an entire 5K without walking, which is still hard for me to imagine.
I am planning on running my first race at the end of the month. (Anne, I wish it would have worked out to do that KC Temple run with you; maybe next year?) I expect that I will run about 2/3 of the distance in short chunks and walk the rest. My goal is to finish in less than 45 minutes. I will probably be on the tail end of the finishers, but I will feel really good about that time.
Last Friday after I ran that mile I continued on to complete five kilometers (walking and running) and my time was 45:37. So I know I can do this!
I am grateful for running. I am grateful for chunks of time away from kids and chaos where I can think. I really don't have the time for it, but I need it so badly. I am grateful for the increase in stamina and cardiovascular health. I can really feel the difference. I love the direction this is going, and the thought that if I just keep at it I will keep getting better.
And I love the manifestation of the idea that sometimes you think what you're doing isn't working and that you're not getting anywhere and then one day, boom! There you are. My hope is that I will see that in my homeschool efforts as well.