Running Granny Green encourages women, especially grandmothers, to gain greater fitness by providing tips and inspiration to insure long years of joyful grandparenting.

The cookie recipes are a bonus!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Remember the BIG KID slide?

YMCA Christmas Run 2009
Remember when you were small and the Big Kid slide at the local park seemed so intimidating?  Do you remember visiting it a few years later and thinking, “What’s the big deal?” That great big slide wasn’t so big after all. It was all about perspective.
For a few years I regularly ran my two and three mile routes feeling both exhausted and satisfied afterwards.  Anything over three miles scared me – a lot!  Then my running friend, Susan, talked me into entering a 10K Christmas Run.  I pushed past the three mile mark for a few weeks, ran the race, and promptly dropped back to my regular mileage.  I ran the occasional 5K race, duplicating my times to within hundredths of a second.  No lie!  Without a racing challenge I had no incentive to go farther than the occasional four or five miles.

Enter the Long Run.  I determined to run a half marathon.  This motivation came mostly from watching still overweight Biggest Loser contestants compete in a marathon!  “Hey, if they can do that, I should be able to do the same!”  Realistically, though, I needed to survive a half first.  I visited Smart Coach at and downloaded a customized training program.  I picked a race in early May and then changed my mind - twice.  The race date moved to the end of June and I delayed the long run training for a few weeks.  Here is the race.  Crazy, I know!  Finally, I ran eight miles three weeks in a row, then nine, and then ten.  The biggest challenge about the long run thus far has been mental.  I have to really talk myself into settling down for a very lengthy workout!

One bonus about using a training plan is the occasional rest week.  Rest week fell on Old Fort BoiseDays 5K Fun Run week!  I substituted a four mile easy run for a 3.1 mile race and something unexpected happened.  My 5K time that had been fluctuating only hundredths of seconds was faster.  Much faster!  Almost two minutes faster!  I attribute it to the Long Run.  You see, after running eight, nine, and ten miles, a little old 5K doesn’t seem nearly so intimidating!  It was like looking at the Big Kid slide when you are all grown up. Don’t get me wrong … I was tired and self-indulgent as usual after a race, but during the race my mind kept saying, “What’s the big deal?  This isn’t ten miles!” It was all about perspective.

Question: What challenges have you endured that changed your perspective?

Happy Running!

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