From Never Running to Running My First Half of a Half Marathon

Running Sucks. I’ve always felt this way about it and I probably always will. Yes, I am a hypocrite about my favorite exercise. I’ve never been a runner. When I decided to start this journey I never thought I would ever progress enough to be able to accomplish a half marathon.

When I was younger I enjoyed running as fast as I could against friends to see who would win. Sometimes I could beat the boys on the playground, but some of them were faster than I was. This led me to do track in sixth grade. I ended up running one race at Parkside and came in second-to-last place. This was the end of my track career. The only other running I did was two track laps as a warmup before tennis during high school.

I wanted to run in college for exercise. This was the first time I wanted to run in a long time. I had a treadmill in one of my apartment buildings. I decided to start a thirty minutes regimen that consisted of running until I was out of breath then walking until I was ready to run again. I pushed myself. I wanted to be fit. It was at this time that there was something wrong with me. I couldn’t run.

You’re probably thinking “oh my gosh, there was nothing wrong with you”. There was something wrong with me. I had big boobs. Ginormous. Every time I would run (or try to) my back would be sore for three days afterward. The pain was so unbearable that I gave up running even when I literally just started. The only thing I’ve ever wanted to do and I physically could not do it.

In the summer of 2011 I had a breast reduction. This is one of my best decisions I’ve ever made in my entire life. I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to do it because I know I would’ve been miserable otherwise. Within a few months I started running. I would get on the treadmill and run as much as I can for as long as I could, which wasn’t much. I could maybe go for a half mile at the longest before I gave up. I downloaded the Couch to 5K app to help improve my endurance.

In the spring of 2012, I ran a 5K in 30 minutes flat. I was so proud of myself. I continued doing a lot of 5K’s in 2012 which included obstacle courses as well. While I didn’t care about the time in those, I cared about my strength and endurance throughout.

Now, in 2013, I usually run about two miles during my lunch hour a couple days a week. I have a hard time running on the treadmill compared to running outside where I have better control over my breathing. On July 21st I was supposed to run a half marathon, but I ended up sleeping through my alarm which didn’t give me enough time to drive to Chicago. I promised myself I was going to make it up on my own time in the next weekend.

The following Saturday morning I woke up at 5:30 and left my house a little after 6am. I had mapped out a path that would’ve been 13.72 miles. I ran for 7.65 miles in 1:33:14 and then I had a sharp pain on the outside of my foot. I couldn’t even walk straight on it. I had to limp 3.85 miles home after I couldn’t get a hold of someone to pick me up. The first thing I did when I got home was throw my shoes away. Somehow I was certain that the shoes were the problem.

A few days later the doctor told me I had tore a muscle in my foot. As long as I stayed off it, he assured me, I would be better within a week or two.  And it was.  During those two weeks I had a hard time believing that my foot wasn’t broken.

After waiting an excruciatingly long healing period (three weeks) I’ve ran five days last week which concluded with the Electric Run.  I completed my best time for a 5K in 27:09.  Huzzah.  Photo is from my Instagram account of me and my friend, Laura. To summarize: I don’t think I’ll be trying for a Half Marathon again.

Electric Run