I enjoy running, so this is a wonderful time of year for me as most of my favorite races tend to take place in the Fall. At the end of September is the Richard S. Caliguiri City of Pittsburgh Great Race, a 10K with a beautiful course that goes from Frick Park through Oakland, passes Duquesne University (my alma mater) and finally ends at Point State Park downtown. The very next weekend is the Mario Lemieux Foundation 6.6K. This is another favorite race where runners get to cross two Pittsburgh bridges, the Smithfield Street Bridge and the 10th Street Bridge, and run through the Armstrong Tunnel before crossing the finish line where Mario himself is waiting to high-five runners as they complete the race. This year, the weather was perfect both weekends – cool and sunny – and I ran a personal best in both races. Next weekend is the EQT 10 Miler which I have been training for and hope (fingers crossed) to PR as well.
As a runner, I love that feeling of crossing the finish line and I love my finisher’s medal, when the race provides one. But it occurs to me that maybe the start line is the more important part of the race. After all, you can never cross the finish line if you don’t cross the start line. Thinking about that made me think about how I got started running.
I was always an avid walker. I established a love for taking long walks back in middle school when my best friend and I used to walk for miles together after school and on the weekends. One day about 4 years ago I was out for a long walk and I thought about running. What if I could run to that next telephone pole? I did – cool. Then, what if I can run to that next mailbox – and I did. There was a lot of huffing and puffing in between, but that’s basically how I got started running. I built upon each previous experience and kept going until the first time I was able to run a mile without stopping. What a feeling that was! Running is still hard, and I’m no Shalane Flanagan, but I keep training and trying and huffing and puffing, and working to better my speed and fitness with each step.
I learned to run by walking first, then running in very short bursts and building from there. This approach works when tackling so many seemingly insurmountable tasks in life. Maybe you’ve got fifty pounds to loose. That seems impossible! But what if you concentrate on the first five and then the next five and then the next? Each step in the process will have its own difficulties, but if you keep moving forward you will accomplish great things.
What is that old saying about how to eat an elephant? – One bite at a time! Take small bites, make a little progress, take a few steps backward now and then, and keep going. Chances are all you need is a little support and some assistance getting to the start line. I’d love to help you take that first step. Contact me for a free consultation and let’s figure out how to get started.
Remember - Walk then run, or just walk, but start
That’s what’s Working Well for me today. What’s Working Well for you?