I’ve decided to take up running. Jogging. Or, at the moment, jalking (a hybrid of jogging and walking that currently is far more walk than jog). There is, as far as I am aware, nothing major that has sparked this decision, merely a feeling that I should be doing more to get fit and look after myself. A bit about me – I’m 23, female, live in rural England near to Wales and am a pharmacist-in-training. I’m also looking for a new job, which is one of my least favorite activities ever.
I am currently in three minds about this. Well, three parts. My mind (the sensible, internal voice that believes it has most of the say in these matters) is all for it. My body has the sneaking suspicion that it is going to be called upon to do most of the work, and is therefore relatively unenthusiastic. However, Mind keep pointing out how good jogging will be for Body and how much better it will feel. My brain (the squishy chemical ridden blob that does its own thing whatever, and likes undermining Mind) is unconvinced. Mind is doing its best to bribe Brain with the thought of some nice endorphins, but it is unclear how successful this is going to be. We will see.
I have, like many people I would imagine, had this desire for fitness and health before. For me, deciding to jog has never ended well. Honestly, I just find it boring and hard work. I prefer sports where you get to chase little balls around and hit them, preferably at high speed. Tennis – perfect. Hockey – jolly good fun. Running – do I have to? So its odd that I keep coming back to jogging as a sport. I think its a convenience thing. You need a pair of shoes. Thats about it. Other bits and bobs are nice/useful, but when you get down to it, shoes is it. And an outside (or gym… I dont have one of those). Everyone has an outside. My outside is particularly nice, which I imagine is another reason I feel I should jog. So I’m not going to go into this project pushing myself to run miles, break through pain barriers and do a 5K in a month. No. Nonono. I plan to jalk my way along, working steadily to more and more jogging and less walking until I can do a good 30min run. I dont mind how long it takes. I dont want to crush this delicate desire to be a fit runner by doing to much and meaning that jogging = pain. So slow and steady is the plan. I am aiming to get out 2 to 3 times a week. Again, not pushing myself with unrealistic goals to run 5 times a week or anything, becuase I wouldnt. And then I would feel guilty and stop trying. Mind is doing its very best not to give Brain any reasons to quit. Besides, its cold and dark out when I’m at home, so really weekends are going to be my best bet. I havent reached a level of enthusiasm where I will run in the cold and dark. Fingers crossed for next winter.
So, I happily set out for my first jalk. And it was happily, the sun was shining, and I havent seen sunshine for weeks. In fact daylight is something that only happens to me when I’m driving to and from work at the moment – the NHS doesnt believe in lunchbreaks long enough to go outside (well, not when your nearest exit is down a seemingly endless corridor). I have to say, despite being a relatively active person, I felt really really unfit. And cold air hurts, even in the sunshine. However, 30 mins of jalking later I was feeling pretty happy, and very glad to defrost my ears against the aga. Yes, I looked as strange as that sounds.
So we will see where this new resolution takes me 🙂