Thursday, July 19, 2012

Running, Part 1:

Running, as it were, holds a very special place in my heart.  Both as the thing I hate above all other things, and one of my favorite things to do.  I know this may sound strange, but I think many new-to-running individuals would agree.  You see the first time you go out running can potentially be one of the most defeating experience a person can go through.  Because you start out with these expectations of doing a couple miles, maybe two or three if your smart.  If your like me you think you'll just be able to kick the ground until you've gone 10 miles the first time out.  What actually happens though, is more like 100 yards or so before you feel like vomiting all over your shiny new running shoes and you are sure you're going to die since you have somehow lost your ability to breath!!  Gasping for dear life after such a short little jog may make you feel humiliated and alone there on the side of the road, but it shouldn't.  Actually, this is the biggest mistake new runners make: going to far to soon and overdoing it.

When you start out, running is some seriously HARD stuff!  I am not exaggerating when I say 100 yards broke me down to the point where I was bent over on the side of the road, leaning on my knees, staring at the ground and my beautiful yellow laces wondering when in the world I got so old and fat!!  The truth however, will set you free from this overwhelming feeling of failure.  Most good running coaches will tell you even 100 yards when your getting started is way to far.  These guys know what's up too.  We need to start with something much smaller.  I would say go outside and walk for 2 minutes, and then run for 30 seconds before dropping down to another 2 minute walk.  Do this for 15 minutes or so and then go home.  That's more like it.  Grab an app like Couch to 5K, or 5K to 10K from the app store if your an iPhone user or something similar and get started gradually. Then you won't injure yourself early on. I know, to my ears, hearing that I only had to run 30 seconds at a time was like manna from heaven, but believe it or not there is better news still for you aspiring runners!

The most amazing thing happens after some time doing this, as you push past the inability to breath suddenly running starts to feel good. The walking breaks become more annoying and less welcome and BAM, you can run!! This is something called cardiovascular fitness, or in other words your heart.  What has happened is your heart has become strong enough to support you and your running and is no longer the weak link in the chain of required metabolic processes required for you to continue putting one foot in front of the other at a a rate faster than walking!  I want you to have a health respect for your heart here so take a moment and do a little exercise (no pun intended) a gym teacher in high school made my class do.  Take something in your hand that is roughly the size of a baseball and squeeze it once ever second for say, the next 5 minutes.  Can you even do it?  No?  well your heart has to do that even faster than once / second, and for how long?? only for the rest of your life.  And by the way if your heart takes a little rest, you die.  So respect it's pulmonary awesomeness.  Furthermore, your heart get's the luxury of getting much stronger much faster than the rest of your body because it already has some endurance training and some strength when you start running, since it's been beating already since before you were born.

Anyway, here is the point where it actually get's a little risky.  Summery:  your heart is strong enough to run, you feel great when you run, nothing is holding you back anymore right?  WRONG!  Remember those frail little weak toothpicks sticking out from the bottom of your hips?  That's the next limiting factor, so remember don't over do it or the next thing you'll get is a knee / running injury, like your IT band or shin splints.

So the short version is, running is hard, it get's way easier, don't get hurt by doing to much to soon, and don't hate yourself if your not where you wish you were just yet!  Go get em' champ!

Read the follow up info on Running Part 2 here:

Read the follow up info on Running Part 3 here:


  1. Right on Aaron! I don't like running, or jogging in my case, but it is a way to stay in shape, or get in shape with a minimal time. Plus, all you need is a pair of decent shoes.
    I didn't know you were up to this! You are one strong dude to begin with, so you will have this down in no time.
    Let me know how I can help. I know more about cycling than running.

    1. Thanks champ! It's mostly jogging in my case too, no worries! Hey your post says Unknown though so I really have no idea who you are Mr. Unknown! Haha! Hope you are loving the blog and thanks for the encouragement!! Look forward to hearing from you again champ!

  2. wow...dude you can publish a book when this is all done using these posts as the skeleton. It is definitely funny and engaging reading from a real guy. Keep it up

  3. Awesome! That's not such a bad idea! Stay tuned for more!

    (PS. this is the first comment I have ever posted on any blog ever in my whole life, Seriously!)


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