So, I want to get strong

I don’t care much about numbers on the scale, but I have turned into Silly Putty and I have determined that I would like to change that and get strong, use my body, be fit.

I decided this about two weeks ago and I promptly began the Couch to 5K program.

Two weeks ago exactly I tried Week 1 Day 1 of the program. I made it through a little more than half of the intervals, skipping some toward the end, and felt like total death after just 1.57 miles of mostly walking with very little running. I rested two days, tried again, and failed even harder–only made it through 2 intervals and .83 miles. That was an attempt at a morning run though…maybe I’m just not a morning person?

I decided to slow my pace and start at easier intervals of 45 seconds run / 90 seconds walking, and successfully did this “Week 0” with 4 intervals the first try and 6 intervals the second. I gained confidence here, and decided my next run I would finally complete Week 1 Day 1.

I had also started the C25K program three years ago and apparently didn’t learn from my mistakes then. I began running then in improper shoes, eventually hurting my ankles and stalling progress, and I began running now in minimalist/barefoot shoes–foolishly thinking that because I can walk for miles in them surely beginning to run in them would be great. Nope.

Vivoebarefoot Evo

Gorgeous shoes, right? I was so excited to have treated myself to minimalist running shoes. And then they screwed me. I felt great completing Week 1 Day 1, slow and steady. Just 1.69 miles at a 16:16 overall pace. About halfway through my left ankle started being angry during the running portions. I ended that run meeting Art and Lily at the park and the walk home from there my ankle was pretty angry. I iced it, kept it up, and went to bed thinking surely it would feel better after sleeping. Another nope.

I woke up for a big camping weekend hobbling around like I’ve never hobbled before. I hobbled to Target for an ankle wrap, which helped sort of, and spent a lot of camping sitting or laying (yay, hammock!).

By the end of the three-day weekend I was walking without a noticeable limp, but I still decided to hit up the walk-in sports medicine clinic just to verify that rest, compression, ice, and elevation was the best way to recovery. The PA there was kind, and not judgmental at all (I worried about looking like a fool…I mean, it’s sort of embarrassing), and he confirmed all of the above but with a mandatory 2 weeks of rest before I can start walking/biking for fitness, and 3 weeks before I can start up running again–and ONLY then if I get fitted properly for real running shoes. Yeah, I realized that myself too.

Through Dr. Google, and confirmed by the sports medicine clinic, I learned that the forefoot strike from wearing minimalist shoes puts extra stress on the achilles tendon, causing this tendonitis. Walking in minimalist shoes is awesome for me, absolutely no complaints. But running just plain doesn’t work. I’ll be hitting up a running store before I get back at C25K.

In the meantime I’m really disappointed at the limited activity. I have been doing just about every body-weight fitness thing I can think of that doesn’t put stress on my ankle. I’ve been gently stretching it too, as well as the rest of my body, to work on flexibility. Seriously, I’m still made of Silly Putty, so I’m working on reverse pull-ups, kneeling pushups, crunches, sit-ups, planks (carefully), that sort of stuff. I was super sore last night after doing a ton, but this morning I’m not nearly as noodle-y as expected.

I want to be strong. I want endurance. I don’t want to get winded. I want to be able to do legit pull-ups. I’ve felt nuggets of motivation like this before, but I don’t think they were ever this strong. I’m going to do this. I AM doing this.