I ran a 5k for the first time ever on my 30th birthday. Holy crap.

You guys, I can’t believe it. I ran 5k. It’s been a long time coming, but I finally did it.

I don’t even know where to begin this blog. I am sitting here, in my living room, having just scooted back home from Golden Gate Park, high on life and wanting to cry my eyes out. I know 5k isn’t much to a lot of people, but this is huge for me.

I’ve struggled with my weight and health all my life. Remember those presidential race things in elementary school? I dreaded those all year long because even in the first grade I couldn’t run a mile like everyone else in my grade.

Then over the last few years I’ve tried to get in shape and accomplish this life list item of running a 5k, but I kept failing. It wasn’t until I had lunch with my cousin Morgan 9 weeks ago that I got re-inspired.

Over the last nine weeks I’ve been training with this app that he suggested called Get Running. BEST THING EVER. There’s this nice australian lady who coaches you in your ear along the way. Week one we started running 1 minute, walking 1 minute. We gradually ran longer and longer stretches until today: I ran 35 minutes straight. 5 kilometers through Golden Gate Park on this unusually sunny and warm June day.

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When I finished my run this morning, just as I exited the park onto Stanyan, and that little voice from my app said, “Congratulations. 5 kilometers, completed,” I cried, like, a lot. I punched my fists and grunted and cried in sheer joy. This might be the best birthday present I have ever given myself, ever.

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Here’s what I’ve learned along the way:

When it comes to getting in shape, you can’t just rely on inspiration. I have made this mistake for years. I get all inspired, ready to conquer my goals! I buy new running gear and start off with a bang! Then when that inspiration is gone, I trail off.

Instead this is how you have to think about it:

There are inspiration days, and there are determination days.

These days are very, very different. On inspiration days I feel like I could run forever and then some because everything is wonderful and I am amazing.

Then there are determination days. These are days I just straight up would rather eat a pile of dirt than put on my running shoes and actually move my body. But you have to do it anyway. And people say, “Oh those endorphins will kick in and you’ll be so happy once you’re out there!” No. Some days that just doesn’t happen, and the only happiness you feel about your workout is it being OVER.

Here’s another thing I learned:

Keep coming back, it works if you work it. 

How many times have I tried a couch to 5k program? Too many to count. How many times have I failed? One less than that. I am not an out of shape person to my core. Yes, I have struggled most of my life, but here I am turning 30 today and I’m in the best shape of my life. If you keep at it, little by little you will get to your goals.

And now it’s time to celebrate.

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This entry was posted in 5k Challenge, Health, Life List. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to I ran a 5k for the first time ever on my 30th birthday. Holy crap.

  1. Grandma Barbara says:

    OMG! THAT’S FANTASTIC! HOORAY, TOO, FOR MORGAN, FOR HOOKING YOU UP WITH THAT PROGRAM. “WHATEVER THE MIND CAN CONCIEVE OF AND BELIEVE IN IT CAN ACCOMPISH.” GOETHE (I THINK). LOVE YOU! 🙂

  2. camper says:

    “I am not an out of shape person to my core.”

    Amen, sister. And it feels like with every run, I peel away more to reveal the core of me that is strong and determined and not so unlike those “fit people.”

  3. pat says:

    from reddit here. YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY YYYYYY YYYYY CONGRATULATIONS FOR YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENT AND B-DAY. btw I think ladies between 30 and 40 are the most attractive and feminine. Regards from Brazil.

  4. Congratulations and Happy 30th! And I agree strongly with you on “inspiration” days and “determination” days.

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