Beginnings suck. Once the excitement of trying something new or getting a fresh start wears off, the actual doing of something becomes tedious.
Endless jokes about new years resolutions filled every media for the first week of the year. Most blogs focused on tools to make those resolutions stick. Making changes is important. And doing that at the beginning of the year seems cliché. But planning goals works better when there is a clear starting point. Jan 1 provides a great starting point.
Some coworkers talked me into planning to run a half marathon this year. Huge goal. I agreed. My reasoning followed this path – if I pull this off it would be awesome; if I failed, it would be a truly motivating goal to push me make some significant fitness progress. Progress I desperately need.
It took about two days of researching plans to train for a half marathon for me to realize that I’m not ready for this. At least not ready to run the same days as my coworkers. I have never run 13 miles in my life. The furthers I have run is ten, and that was a long, long time ago. And I have added about 50% to my body weight since then. I need a few more months to get ready.
I currently can’t run the beginning distances of half marathon training program. I need a program to get me in shape enough to start that. So I looked into a 10k training plan. That starts too long too.
My new goal is to follow a 5k training program to get in shape enough to begin the 10k program. At the end of the 10k program, I plan to run a race of that length. After which I can start training for the half, because I will finally be ready for that.
The problem with this plan is that I actually need to lose some weight to be ready to do the 5k program. The first time I ran 1 mile, I felt horrible. My knees and ankles, both of which got pretty beat up playing football. They ache when I run. I know this is aggravated by the fact that I could lose about 70 pounds before I get close to what most doctors call a healthy weight for my height.
So I find myself in this conundrum: I weigh to much to run easily but I need to run to help me lose weight. Thus I must start much slower than I want to get the momentum I need to move forward.
Which brings me back to my main point. Beginnings suck. I like completing things. I occasionally enjoy the doing of things. I almost always hate starting things. Even things I enjoy like writing. Or reading.
There is an old saying that goes, “everyone loves having written, nobody loves writing.” This has to be more true for running. Writing is hard but it rarely hurts. Running is hard and it hurts. Today, I still am in pain from Friday’s run and I really don’t want to do today’s run.
I imagine one day, after I run the half marathon, that I will be glad I had run it. But I am quite sure, that I will not enjoy getting there. Based on the beginning, I am quite sure about being quite sure.
And as I lose weight, I will be glad I put forth the effort.
But for now, I hate myself for setting this goal, because beginnings suck.