Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Breaking the Body Down

At our annual Christmas party for ex-JD Edwards folks, a few friends asked me about my running. They were wondering about my motivation and how I was doing. Was I worried about my body.

Absolutely I am.

I'm a big guy. I have a large upper body, thick legs, not exactly built like a runner. More like a linebacker. I've had issues with ankles and knees most of my life, though I think a lot of that is that I've pushed too hard in my training, harder than my body can take. Typically I've broken down after a few months of running.

My ankles hurt as often as they don't when I first get out of bed and limp around. My right knee is sore as we speak, stiff after some nights of karate. I've pulled lots of hamstrings over the years.

But I felt that way before I started this running streak and I don't really feel worse. And as I've run through some nagging injuries or pains, I've started to feel better. They've healed themselves even as I'm using them.

One of the reasons that I typically go 1.25-1.75 miles is that I don't think that's a lot more than I might walk, and I walk every day of my life. I figure an extra mile isn't really breaking things down too much and I do slow down on those days when I feel worse. I do try to listen to my body.

If I tried to build up to running 5 miles a day I don't think my body could take it. Even if I took 2 years to get there. Instead I'd like to build up to an average of 2 miles, perhaps doing 1 mile on days I have other stuff planned, save 2 for the off days, and still give myself a nice easy 1 mile day with nothing else going on.

I'm amazed that I have gotten as far as I have, and I'm looking forward to going further.

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