When I get really excited about something I find important I begin to take on obsession like characteristics over it. It consumes my spare time, my conversations with people; it basically turns into my world. This new obsession of mine is not an opinion or an idea I want to push on anyone, it’s something I’ve always wanted to do and now I can’t wait any longer – I want to run a half-marathon.
Ever since I can remember I have always loved to run. I remember when I was six years old, I was playing in the playground and I asked a fellow classmate to teach me how to run faster. His advice? Pump my arms. When I was in third grade the teacher made me run with the boys so I would have competition. Middle school – track, high school – long runs to stay in good condition for sports, and then there came college. Dun, Dun, Dun. Oh my how four years flies and the only time I thought of running was about two weeks before bathing suit season.
My New Year’s resolution for every year since I was 14 has been to run three to five times a week. Every year I started off strong or maintained it in spurts throughout the year but would get lost in the hustle and bustle of life. But this year I’ve actually been able to maintain it by changing my mindset. What is my new mindset approach to exercise? I want to maintain a healthy lifestyle. I want to be 40 plus years old and still be able to run five miles.
I do admit running does get old after you do it four times a week with the same route. The benefit of Chapel Hill is that it is so friendly to runners, and it has numerous side walks all over to create new routes. But other than new routes I try to incorporate other forms of cardio and exercise. Something as simple as using the elliptical once a week to attending a cycling class can make a difference. I participated in the YMCA’s Tour de France cycling class a couple weeks ago and it kicked my butt, but I loved it! It was 34 miles in two hours and it mocked the route the bikers in the race were actually doing at the time. Now I want to take up cycling on the side!
Though I do love changing up my workout sessions and making exercise a lifestyle, in the end you have to find what works for you. My personal success has come from making exercise a lifestyle and incorporating it throughout my day. I do this by keeping my sneakers outside of my closet as a reminder that I’m going to be running later. I read numerous articles and blogs about healthy recipes, fitness advice, and so much more. I don’t do this as a chore either, I love it! These past couple of months I’ve been reading up on fitness tips in Fitness magazine, Shape magazine, and now my new favorite RUNNER’S WORLD. I’m obsessed with Runner’s World magazine! My walking up stairs buddy, and more importantly friend at work, Carol, gave me this crucial inside scoop. Let’s just say I stayed up all last night watching video after video of all these great running tips, training tips, fitness assessment tips, even the Runner’s World challenge - You name it, I watched it.
Well this year I’m finally back into routine and I’ve been sticking to my 2010 New Year’s resolution pretty good. Granted I’ve had my relapses, but I’m ready to push myself and make myself work for something. My principal of making this a lifestyle is the key to my success. I want to be healthy and lead an active life. I don’t desire to be thin and look like the women in the fashion industry. When I think of them I just want to eat. However, what does motivate me is the idea of being fit, being completely in-tune with my body and being strong. I’m in love with the women featured in Runner’s World magazine. They aren’t just in shape, they don’t work out to look good in a bathing suit – they’re motivated, they’re strong mentally and physically – they have reached their body’s ultimate potential. They have mastered one of the hardest elements of fitness, which is to be completely in sync with your mind and body. This is who I want to be.