Yesterday I popped down to my local running club for the first time. I wanted to join because I tend not to push myself in training, I wanted to meet more runners, and I wanted to be able to improve my technique and speed/distance without risking injury. I was nervous that everyone would be very serious and very fit and would laugh at me for being slow. However they were lovely, very friendly and immediately made me feel welcome. They were all keen in an enthusiastic way.
My 10k training schedule specified a gentle 4.5 mile run and I found a group that was doing a long slow run due to most of them recovering from a 10K on Sunday. One of the runners was an 86 year-old man who ran it in 56 minutes. I hope I can run it that quick when I'm 86!
I ended up doing 5.08 miles in 49:46, and was troubled with a bit of an aching stomach for most of it. I've been trying to do press-ups again, so I wonder if it's the same problem coming back. Either way, I'll definitely be going back for the next session of intervals on Thursday.
I bought a few exercise DVDs recently. This included Yogalates 6 for Weight Loss which, despite the horrible name, is a relaxing hours mix of yoga and pilates for core strengthening and toning. I'm a beginner when it comes yoga and pilates but I found it easy to follow aside from a few harder poses and stretches which require more balance than I currently have! I don't think the DVD contains much for someone who has done yoga or pilates before, as they might feel they're not being stretched (ahem) by the routine, however.
The instructor made some dubious-sounding claims which annoy me. She made out that doing the routine several times a week would result in weight loss. Only if you include it with eating more healthily, and a shedload of cardio exercise in my experience. She also made the random claim that twisting your torso from one side to the other can aid digestion and hanging foward from the waist means all the blood will rush to your face and act like a mini-facelift. Um, really? Are you sure?
Quibbles aside it was cheap, it's easy and convenient and I'm going to be keeping it up. I did the hour-long routine as a warmup stretching session before doing a 4 mile run this evening. A slow 4 miles in just over 40 minutes run. I definitely need to be in a running club to stop me slacking off!
I was going to do WIAW today, but forgot to photograph dinner. Maybe next week.
I guess the theme of this post is persistence. I will never be an elite runner; I will never be the best runner I could have been since I started too late and wasn't active in my teens and early twenties. But I will still enjoy it. I will dedicate myself to improving - to running faster and further - and when I reach an age where I cannot physically improve and I begin to slow down, I will persist at running for the mental and physical benefits it brings, and because I enjoy it.