Last night from the comfort of my warm cosy bed I made a new fitness goal during a texting conversation with my awesome personal trainer Renee.
To run 1km without stopping within 12 weeks.
To some of my running friends like Sharon this may seem like an easy task but to me this is a big deal, mentally more than physically.
Deep down inside I have always thought I’d like to be a runner but had never done anything about it until last year.
I have been going to the gym for years but never seriously. I would go for weeks without going at all or only once a week for personal training. Then last year I decided to take my fitness more seriously. Partly to lose weight but more importantly so that I could feel better within myself, help with my mental health and so that I could keep up with Miss A (she is a very active child who runs more than she walks). Also so that I would be in a good place to begin my 40’s.
I took part in a 12 week challenge at the gym which gave me the motivation kick start I needed to make the gym an important priority and routine in my life. This worked and I now go 3 times a week on average. At the same time, as a family we decided to start doing parkrun. A free weekly timed 5km run/walk. Inspired by friends, this has been a great social addition to our weekend routine as well as good exercise.
All of this has definitely resulted in an increase in my fitness level. I still mostly walk parkrun each week adding in some running when and if I feel like it. I have also started (and restarted) the Couch 2 5k program. Although an accident at the beginning of the year put a dent in this. More on this in a future post.
Enough of the back story. Now back to my new goal.
But first I want to rave about my trainer Renee. She is one the best personal trainers I have had. She cares about my mental health as well as my physical health. She is a qualified exercise physiologist and is dedicated to all her clients in both her jobs, at my gym and one for the elderly. This dedication and hard work saw her named the Exercise and Sports Science Australia’s Exercise Physiology Graduate of the Year. I am honoured to be one of her clients.
A few weeks ago Renee made me run 500m without stopping. I survived, although I thought my lungs were going to explode at the end of it. If Renee was not there standing next to me, controlling the buttons on the treadmill and giving me encouragement I would have given up. In fact in the past I have, every other time I tried to run 500m without stopping. But I trust Renee. I know she would never make me do this if she didn’t think I could. And that if I was going to pass out or whatever she would stop me. I think I have only ever fainted on her once.
Last week Renee made me run 500m again. Again I would have given up if Renee wasn’t there. But I did it and survived. I was exhausted but my lungs didn’t feel like they were going to explode this time.
So last night after more encouragement from Renee by text I agreed to the goal. I know my legs can do it. I know my lungs can do it. My biggest hurdle is my head.
Ultimately, I don’t want to be able to run a sub 30 or 35 minute 5km. Heck I don’t care if I will never run a parkrun without stopping. What I want is to break through the mental barrier that is stopping me from doing this at all. Some people may be able to do this by themselves but for me I know I need a trainer and with Renee by my side I will achieve my goal.