This week, I embarked on my first bit of real exercise since I moved to London and started working full time (just over six months, for those of you not counting).
I don’t really have any excuse for this, and a slew of recent “get fit” blog posts/Instagrams had me feeling decidedly guilty. With the sun shining last Saturday and both the boys of the household up and at the gym/on 70 mile bike rides by 9am, I decided to take matters into my own hands and head out for a run.
I’ve attempted “regular” runs before, but I have to admit I’ve been a bit of a quitter with the whole thing and I’m definitely guilty of not going out again because the first time was too hard. In fact, I very nearly didn’t go on Saturday because I was a bit worried that I would collapse and die at the end of the road.
Enter the NHS Couch to 5k app. I think we’ve all heard about this by now and I’ve heard only good things, so, convinced that it was my golden key to an Ellie-Goulding body, I downloaded it and set off before I could change my mind.
You know what? I was very pleasantly surprised. In week one, the app asks you to go out 3 times, for a 30 minute “run” involving a five minute walk to warm up, followed by 1 minute of running/jogging and 90 seconds of walking (repeated for 20 mins), and then a five minute cool-down walk.
I won’t lie; while it was easier than I had anticipated, I was definitely glad of the frequent walking breaks. I’m not sure if that’s embarrassing or not (I suspect yes), but whatever, it’s true. There’s also a nice lady who tells you when to walk and when to run and provides a bit of motivation, which I actually found SUPER helpful. Either way, I didn’t die, and actually you could say I quite enjoyed myself.
Since Saturday I’ve completed two more runs, officially completing week 1 of the 9-week program. Totalling 8 minutes of actual running with each run, it doesn’t exactly feel like I’m changing the world, but eight minutes is better than no minutes, right?
While I haven’t developed perfectly toned legs yet, I do feel better in myself and certainly feel much more productive when my day starts or ends with exercise. I’m even excited about continuing with the app. I think my biggest obstacle is going to be creating a set routine: once I get into that, I’m away. And when I have to actually start running for more than one minute at a time, of course, but I’ll deal with that when I get to it.
I’m posting about it here in order to keep myself accountable, mostly, but also to track my progress and to share my experiences with you guys. In another effort to make sure that I don’t tail off like I have done before, I’ve also decided that if I reach the end of March and am still running, I get to treat myself to fancy schmancy new gym gear. Nothing like a little bribery to motivate you, right?!
I’ve checked the app and next week seems to involve 90 seconds of running followed by 2 mins of walking. I’ll post about how that goes at the end of next week, and if you don’t see a post, then please feel free to berate me!