Hello, 5K — Glad to Finally Meetcha!

I did it. I completed week 9! Funny how ridiculous I feel thinking back to week one, two and three, when I struggled to run even a minute without excruciating muscle pain or out-of-breathness. Seems like just days ago I was dreading that 20-minute run at the end of week five. So clear in my memory are those thoughts — "Can I really do this? Will I ever be a runner? I can do the minutes, but can I do the miles?"

Well, there are no questions now! I CAN run for thirty minutes at a time without constantly thinking about how painful my calves feel. I CAN start running and decide when to stop, instead of watching every second on the clock ticking down until the dreaded few minutes are over and I can go back to walking again. Gone are the thoughts in my head about how my feet feel like concrete blocks with every step. And GONE is the nagging feeling that I'm just not sure I can do this!

My last run of the C25K training experience was more than the planned 5-minute warm-up walk, 30 minute run, and 5-minute cool-down. I was determined to complete 5k, and I did it — 46 minutes. Okay, my time will need to improve, but I ran for 46 minutes straight. Best of all, I could have continued running if I had wanted to! And that is something I could not have said 9 weeks ago.

Now the 5K I warily signed up for 5 weeks ago is an achievable goal. When I joined this message board I was on week 3 and had in my mind a goal of being able to run the 5K in 45 minutes — not fast, but I wanted to be able to finish and run the entire race. That hardly seemed doable at the time. Over the next 5 weeks I can work on improving my run and speed, and I am looking forward in great anticipation to that starting line, and finally the finish line 5K later.

So now I can run up stairs without feeling winded — like I did when I was 25 (half my current age). I've lost nearly 25lbs and too many inches to count. My jeans slide past my hips without unbuttoning them, and I've run out of holes on my belts. And although I do still enjoy sitting on the couch watching my favorite TV shows, I also look forward to running several times a week with my iPod playing my favorite tunes.

Thanks to all of you for the great encouragement through the weeks! When speaking of your comments I often refer to you as "My friends in the UK." I wish I could join you all for a park run. Maybe some day!

Oh, and I need to end this by expressing sincere sympathy and compassion for all those who were running and cheering on the runners in the recent Boston Marathon. Their day to celebrate something they've worked so hard to achieve was stolen from them. My heart goes out to those many innocent people who lost lives, lost loved-ones, were injured, or even had the promise of achieving a goal stripped from them by this senseless act of violence. It's not fair. I pray for them all as they try to repair from the tragedy that has impacted their lives forever.

24 Replies

  • Congratulations to you!!! Such an awesome achievement, I am sure you must feel incredible! As a soon to be 50 year old, I understand about just getting started and the marked improvement etc. This has to be so beneficial for our health and well being. JOB WELL DONE! :-) That Grad badge is going to look handsome next to your name! :-) Gayle

  • Been following your progress and great to see you finish. Didn't I tell you you would?

    Well done - now you just need to keep on runnin'

  • Yep, you were right. This website has been so helpful and I wouldn't have found it without your blog a few weeks back. Thanks for your inspiration to us all!

  • Congratulations, epic achievement :)

  • Wonderful achievement and blog! Congrats on your graduation, looking forward to seeing the shiny green badge. If you are trying to improve your time for 5k have a look at the 5k+ podcasts. They're good for speed and stamina. Good luck for your 5k run. :)

  • Lovely words... And well done, what a beautiful journey... And so many more to come

  • Ah well done you- you give me hope and inspiration- congratulations and thank you x

  • Amazing progress. Lovely, thought-provoking graduation blog. Well done. :-)

  • Well done! Great blog.

  • Excellent jbroox, well done :-)

  • Congratulations! Your sense of achievement is lovely to read and well deserved.

  • Massive congratulations to you and a wonderful inspiring blog.

  • Congratulations what a wonderful story gives me hope. Keep running

  • Congratulations on graduation, and look forward to hearing about the 5k run :)

    Looking at the 'Run for Boston' page on facebook they asked why people were running in memory ... the answer was simple.....

    "This is what runners do when life gets tough--we lace up our shoes and go run. This is the best way we know how to show Boston our support right now and begin the healing process for all of us."

    That spurred me on to run that day, hope it helps gets you through your 5K :)

  • You lost how much weight?! That's incredible! Well done for completing and lovely blog post, that's for writing it :)

  • "thanks" not "that's" darn predictive text.

  • Well done sir. 46 minutes running is amazing, you must be very please with yourself and rightly so. Congratulations to you and hope you keep it up. :-)

  • Congratulations! Not just on graduation but on the changes you have made to your life in order to get to this point. All the very best with your running :)

  • Oh congratulations! I remember reading your first blog - this programme moves us so far, so fast! All the best for your 5k race - may it be really enjoyable for you.

    Lovely, and moving, graduation blog. Thank you. :)

  • Well done , and thank you for sharing this ...

  • Congratulations, lovely blog it gives me the insensitive to complete week 7.... Well done.

    My thoughts and prays are with Boston

  • Congrats, my fellow Michigander! I graduated today, and I hope you feel as awesome as me! If you're bored, come on down to the Angling Road 5k in Portage next Friday night.

    All the best!

  • Hey, thanks for the invite! I will actually be in Kalamazoo celebrating my daughter's graduation from WMU next weekend. Small world, huh?!

    Barefoot? Wow! I tried a pair of Brooks Pure Connect running shoes during week 2 and clearly needed more cushion. I don't think I could do it. :-/

    I will be running in the ColorMeRad 5k in Grand Rapids on May 25th.

    Best of luck with your 5k next weekend!

  • Fantastic achievement and such a lovely blog! You have done amazingly well both with your running and your weight loss, well done! :)

    Have fun at the ColorMe run, they sound such fun and I wish we had them over here....

    Welcome to to the Grad Club and enjoy celebrating!


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