Sunday, January 5, 2014

Craft A Healthy Life: Permission Not to run a 5k

Harvest A Healthy Life: Permission Not to run a 5k

On my journey toward a healthier life I have several goals. One of them is to run a 5k. Now, I don't have a passion for running but I have always admired people who go out on a 3, 6, 8 mile run. I've wanted to be part of that club. To be able to go on a run with someone. I can picture it in my mind: running down the beach, jogging with a friend in the park, or crossing the finish line with runner numbers on my chest and arms raised in victory. 

So, last year I set out on my goal and began to follow the couch to 5k program.  I handled the first few weeks well, walking/jogging and even seeing some progress and improvement. But I have to admit, if there is a zombie apocalypse, I'm going down.

Running is painful. The extra weight doesn't help, but I get these intense shin splints every time. It's just not fun!

I need a regular fitness program that fits into a working mom's lifestyle. Jogging costs nothing and generally reaps return on investment, however, it's painful, it's boring, and it's hard for me to get away to run after having been gone all day at work.

Somewhere along the way, I had an epiphany. I don't have to run a 5k. Really. I'll be okay if I don't cross that off my bucket list. Why push it when it hurts and doesn't excite me? 

I also realized that by nature I am more of a short burst exerciser than an endurance trainer. I played tennis, swam, played soccer- all short burst. More recently, I've enjoyed HIIT, Insanity and Bootcamp classes. I like these workouts because I don't get bored and I'm challenged.

I also have enjoyed one type of exercise since about 1977, dancing. Also a short burst exercise, I began dancing when I was age 4 with creative movement and when on to take 3-4 classes a week and perform in a dance company. As a young adult I got into the whole swing dance thing and even some ballroom. Now, the only I dancing I get to do is workout DVDs and Wii but I'm all over that! Zumba, Wii dance, Hip Hop Abs, and Shazzy Fitness, as well as traditional aerobics, all make me smile. Working out should be fun, challenging and not boring. Give me a Wii controller or a couple of dance moves over a monotonous treadmill any day. So, I may never run a 5K and that's okay. Too bad they don't have dance marathons. I'd definitely get a number for that.

What are you doing just because it's on your list of things you think you should be able to do? If your not passionate about it, if it hurts, or is boring, why are you wasting your time/effort? Let go of the "should haves" and do what makes you soar. This year, don't should on yourself. Get out there and dance!