Friday, September 18, 2009

The First Time I Ran a Mile

Now, I must take this opportunity to first clear one thing up. The following story isn't of the time that I actually first ran one mile. That time would have been my junior year in high school when I ran a mile for time at the request of my football coach (it was 6m14s if you were interested). This is the story of the first time I ran a mile since my eyes have been re-opened after my 50 day hospital stay. The first time of running a mile since I started as an exercise journal that would keep me accountable in accomplishing my goals. That said goal, running one whole mile.

So two weeks ago Saturday, September 5th, I woke up not feeling so great. It was just a "typical" Cystic Fibrosis morning. I was a little achy, I had a headache and my lungs felt tight and junky. So, instead of the usual morning stroll, I hopped right onto my vest and inhaled medications. I generally like to "shake the cobwebs off" by taking a little morning walk, but not on this Saturday. I could feel the rumble in my chest as I took a deep breath in. I needed to inhale some albuterol stat to try and open myself up! As I was doing my treatments, Mandi asked when we were going to get our run in for the day. I said, "I don't know, what do you think?" in which she replied "After your treatments". Great, I thought, does she even know how I'm feeling, there's NO WAY I'm going to be able to run this morning.

As I sat there flipping through pages on the internet, I ended up up on my YouTube page. Right there on the front was my "Why Push Through the Tough Times" video. Right then I thought, man, I need to practice what I preach. I then started mentally preparing myself for the run that was ahead. I knew that all I had to do was run 27 minutes but that would be broken into 9 minute intervals. Granted, I knew it wouldn't be easy, but if I could do that when I didn't feel well, imagine how far I could go when I felt great!

After, my treatments finished, I started lacing up my shoes (which by the way are working out WONDERFULLY). We started the run by walking for two minutes as is required by the plan that I am on. That two minutes really seemed to fly by, and before I knew it, we were running. As time was clicking down, I remember looking at my watch and seeing that I had already run for 8 minutes and at that point I felt really good. It was then that I made the decision that I would continue running and not look at my watch again until I was physically unable to put one foot in front of the other.

I tried to get in some sort of zone between my strides, the ipod and the road. There are parts of the run that seemed to drag and forever and feel as if I wasn't moving at all or that stationary objects were somehow moving away from me. And then of course there were parts of the run that I'm pretty sure I blacked out because I can't recall a single identifiable object that we passed. What's funny though is a stationary object that was VERY identifiable ended up being my undoing.

As I made my way down A1A in St. Augustine Beach I noticed an electric speed sign that must have been set up by the police. It looked like it was at least 20 miles down the road. Of course the sign was probably only a couple of hundred yards away, but I never thought I would be able to make it. I cut myself a deal, make it to the sign, and then you can look at your watch. Well, I made it to the sign and my watch read 19 minutes and some odd seconds. Ok, push it to twenty I thought. Twenty passed. Ok, just push it until it feels like your legs are going to give out. That ended up happening at about the 23 minute mark when my body made it clear that I had had enough.

I was panting like crazy and coughing so much that there was no doubt to the people around that I had contracted Swine Flu. We ended up walking the entire way back to Grammy's house, but this time we took the beach. And if you're wondering why we didn't run on the beach, it's because we did a couple of days prior and my legs got incredibly dead very fast. I figured if I was going to give it my all that I had I would at least give myself a fighting chance.

Anyway, here's the moral of the story: When you're feeling sick, push yourself. Not only can it make you feel physically better, but you may get over a mental block as well. I know I did.

**We ended up driving our route to see how much distance we covered. I was shocked when we finished the course and the odometer read 1.5 miles!!!! Granted, I need to work I picking up the pace a little, but I'll take it!!!

2 people had something to say...:

Denise said...

You rock!!! Great job and be so proud of yourself. A lot of people who feel fine in the morning can't run a mile.

Anonymous said...

I've been waiting to hear the story behind the running the mile and a half! Good for you! Congratulations!!