I wrote yesterday on my running blog about how I wasn’t looking forward to a run because I felt worn out, tired, and just unmotivated. I went ahead and ran anyway and it turned out to be one of my best runs in terms of how I felt. Sure, it’s not easy, and there is struggle involved, but the amount of effort I put forth was solid but not so much that I felt I was going to die at any point, and better yet, when I finished the run, I felt great without serious muscle pain. Sure, there was the post-run burn, but even still, it wasn’t horrible.
I am a light runner. I run three times a week for about 30-40 minutes each time. I know, to be a serious runner, you’re supposed to run 5-6 times a week for an hour each time, but I just don’t want to do that (yet). I have been avoiding injury and shin splints by running one day and resting the next, so I’m going to continue on this plan for the time being. Also, the motivation for my runs are the following:
- Get my cardio three times a week for at least 30 minutes (check!)
- Build up slowly without injury (check!)
- Bring my run times down for the two-mile run Army PRT (check!)
The final point is huge. For my age, I am now in the top third (1st class) of the Army physical readiness test classifications which is a goal of mine. Why does that matter to an old Marine? Because I’ve been accepted to rejoin the military. I’ll be joining the Army National Guard and swearing in within the week. Yes, even at my old age, because of all my active duty time, I will be able to join the National Guard and complete my 20 years of service toward retirement by the time I’m 60. This is great news because that means my 12 years of Marine Corps active duty service will not go to waste. This is exciting! As for my run times and physical readiness tests, I never want anyone to be able to say I’m not physically able to do the job. I also found that I’m well beyond the requirement for push ups (so I will max that out) and I am close to maxing out sit ups. This is all part of what made this morning great; realizing how far I’ve come in the past five months toward making this all a reality.
People my age tell me that I am inspiring them through my example. That makes me feel great, because I feel that we are not too old to be in shape! We are not to old to be healthy! We can feel young, energized, and capable at our age! It just takes eating right and getting outside for a little bit a few times a week. I did it, and I’m not the type of person who loves exercise. I enjoy running now, but I’m not a gym rat. I don’t LOVE working out and pushing myself (but I love making good, solid progress even if it’s slower than what other people do or have done). What I do love, however, is how capable and fit I feel all the time now. Climb some stairs? No problem. Walk a few miles? Easy. Help lift something heavy? I’m in! I am no longer limited by being fat and out of shape.