I remember when I started running, a friend told me if I could make it to my two mile goal, three miles wasn't going to be far behind. I thought he was crazy. Seriously, athletically crazy.
For a year, I've huffed and puffed my way--red of face and short of breath--around the two mile loop in the neighborhood behind our house. It had taken me five weeks to stretch my run from a quarter of a mile to two miles. It took me a year after that, a year of running about three days a week, to consider myself a runner.
But I wasn't seeing the results I wanted. My clothes still fit the same, and I was hovering at the same weight. Then that comment from Tony began to niggle away at me and a conversation with Ilona cemented the idea: I needed to run further.
So today, as I set out on my loop, I made the choice. I was going to stretch myself--not just up and down the next block, but much further. I was going to shoot for thirty minutes of running instead of about twenty.
When I got back to the house, the place where I usually begin a cool-down walk, I kept running. I turned around and took off down Ridgeway toward the condo subdivision at the end of the road. I ran for 5 minutes, which took me just to the beginning of the subdivision, then turned around and came back. 30 minutes really wasn't much harder than 20. Maybe Tony isn't as crazy as I thought.
I was breathing hard, sure, but not dead. And when I got into the house, I opened my computer and mapped out my route on MapMyFitness.com and guess what? 3.3 miles in 30 minutes. Woo-hoo! I'm pumped. And pretty sore. But very proud of myself.