The Adventures of Now

exploring the mix of fun, fitness & health…as a diabetic

Running Summary

{myrunningstories.tumblr.com is my fitness journal of sorts: recording workouts, recapping runs and sharing tumblr finds – the snapshots….all of which can be found here as well} 

I used to dread the timed mile in gym class. It wasn’t the fear of being the last one  – there were the kids that refused to even try and would walk that held down that place. Worse, I cared. I would be the last one of my friends stumbling to the finish line gasping for air and red-faced while they had time to cool down and hang out. It seemed liked twice the effort for half the return.

I was a moderately active kid : riding bikes, pick up soccer/basketball/tennis, being a beach baby, learning to surf, ect. I didn’t join a team until 5th grade intramural soccer (unless elementary school cheerleading counts – go mini mariners!). I was the shy, quiet type who was more likely to be found playing house, with dolls or reading.

But once JV sports were offered in 7th grade it was never a doubt I would sign up – it was a question for which sport. What do you mean I can’t play soccer and tennis?? Oh, they have the same season, that’s silly. Soccer won. A new program for girls arrived just in time. Winter was for basketball (tryouts) and the cool new sport Lacrosse would be for Spring.

I stuck with Soccer and Lacrosse all the way through senior year of high school, after two years of not making it past the first cuts for basketball I gave up.

I wasn’t strong, far from the best, mostly a bench warmer. I denied offers to go to camps (far too intimidating) and never took extra initiative to practice seriously on my own.

It took a (minor) injury to my MCL senior of soccer to learn what I had in me and how to push myself. It was during physical therapy that I started jumping on the treadmill seriously. That winter I joined a gym and worked hard to be able to finish out my last year of lacrosse. It was a tough personal year for me and the gym gave me focus and confidence that was needed. It became less of not wanting to let the team down to what could I do for myself.

One indoor lacrosse practice finished off my “career.” In stubbornness, I thought I would get back out there and stayed with the team for practices and games – in reality I became the score keeper.

Throughout high school, I would go through phases of running together with various friends – usually a 3 miler out & back – plenty with walking in between.

The summer before college I jumped into the world of teaching kids yoga and I continued to explore those 3 mile runs on my own.

When I went off to college I was thrown into a whole new world of fitness. I discovered gym buddies! While in high school I convinced one of my best friends to go with me for classes (where I was asked to move to the back #rude) most of them weren’t too interested.

In college we all came from different health backgrounds, all had our issues (it wasn’t just me with the struggle of diabetes) and all had our reasons and excuses. Sometimes we all went and sometimes we were on our own.

Throughout the first two years I continued with the gym, going through spurts and phases. Picking elliptical over treadmill and classes over free weights.

During my semester abroad in Florence Italy in the winter/spring of ‘07  I lost control of the numbers. Gone were the machines and controlled environments, it was running along the Ponte Vecchio and in the crowded streets of Florence that opened my eyes. By that time I was learning to trust my body with the difficulty in nutrition labels and a new active city life.

Once I returned to the states I continued to explore running outside. Never far from home, always with my meter & cell phone. But those 3 miles extended into 5 miles every once in a while. And pulling out 5 miles after teaching kids yoga all day taught me to push through the excuses and just get out there.  

Senior year of college I did the unthinkable – I got up early to run. Still not sure what made me do it but I remember sneaking out while my roommate was still sleeping in the dark cold (and 7am in the Rhode Island winter is dark and cold for college life) morning. I forget about that period often but that was definitely another turning point. I am so not a morning person.

I took a class in psychology & sports my last semester – it was awesome. I knew nothing about the sports (try being in a class with Boston sports fans when you’re from NY) but loved the fitness and health aspect. I knew that I’m highly adaptable to my surrounds and that I had discovered the motivation to push myself … so the could was there but the big question was would I ?

When I moved into the city my first apartment had a gym in the basement which was often empty … many people would love that but I realized I thrived off the energy of a gym. While I spent plenty of time down there, I equally was out exploring the city by foot.

Then I jumped into my first job. A day would never be shorter than 11 hours, what was 8a-7p was more often 8-10/12a. Despite being beyond busy handling a few roles, I was still stuck to a desk for the majority of the time. When I was out of the office I was usually hit with pure exhaustion. However, a gym membership was offered to me from the start and I signed up. While there were some definitely some neglecting moments I have made use of that membership for the past 4 years.

But NYC gyms get crowded, so I balanced it out with some running outside, first along the lower-side of the east river and the sidewalks. The great thing about NYC is you can run outside at 10pm and there still be plenty of activity going on.

Then last spring, after many failed attempts to exercise before work, an international client unintentionally made sure I got up for my run ( a few hours early). That started a summer of morning runs, pushing myself in distance, speed, dedication and heat.

Once the sun started sleeping in, so did I. But I had discovered a new level of motivation with the support of reading many stories, stalking reading many blogs and seeing the empowerment of the runners right outside my doorstep. Marathon Monday struck and it was decided : I was going to run the 2012 NYC Marathon!

I knew I would never be able to do this alone, aside from the Diabetes I have a lot to learn as a runner. So after looking at various teams and charities I selected to fundraise Team For Kids (check out my page!) for their empowerment of healthy lifestyles for youth, a growing passion.

It’s not going to be easy getting there, running isn’t easy, but looking back on how much I’ve grown through the various phases I’m amped to soak everything up during this experience. And to divulge the good, bad, frustrating and awesomeness here!

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