I added this goal this morning after already completing it. But, it really was already a goal in my mind. I guess I just forgot to add it to my 43 things.
Anywho, I started getting back in shape (after 18 months layoff), at around the beginning of the year (2011). I was running two days per week – one day interval training, and one day distance training. All running was on a treadmill. I mostly made up my schedule as I went along, judging from the way I felt before and after runs. I was also doing a variety of other forms of exercise – weight lifting, yoga, martial arts, etc.
After about 4-5 months, I was able to run up to 10 miles in 90 minutes on a distance day, and I could sustain 10 miles/hour for four minutes on an interval day. I was determined to extend that pace for a couple more minutes and get to a six minute mile. However, every time I tried, my legs would start to give out on me at about 3.5-4 minutes.
Around the end of May I was starting to feel a little beat up from over training, so I decided to take a week off and come back easier, and more focused on specific athletic goals. I stopped running and focused more on pushups (for upper body and core) and martial arts (because I like it).
A couple weeks ago my buddy gave me Born to Run, by Chris McDougall for my birthday. It’s informative and unbelievably inspirational. After tearing through it, I couldn’t wait to get back to running (I know, I’m a sucker for that sort of thing)! Today I decided to ease back in with 20 minute jog. I felt so good after 10 minutes, I decided to push the pace to 10mi/hr and see how far I could go. To my surprise, I easily kept pace for six minutes!
Part of it was inspiration, and I think another part was an improvement in my running form. I strive for good form already, but throughout reading Born to Run, I was visualizing good form (as it is frequently depicted in the book).
I doubt this story could possibly be helpful to anyone. I would say the key take-aways should be: 1.) get in some running shape; 2.) read Born to Run for inspiration; 3.) learn, practice, and implement solid efficient running form.
Have fun, and good luck!