Embracing the Challenge: My Third Attempt at Couch to 5k

Embarking on my third attempt with the “couch to 5k” app by Zenlabs, I carried a history of starts and stops never making it past the first 3 weeks on the previous attempts. My journey with running has been a roller coaster of determination, setbacks, and renewed resolve. As I laced up for this latest endeavor, I couldn’t help but reflect on my previous attempts, including the runs at the end of last year and the start of this year that were abruptly halted by a fall. It wasn’t until August that I felt ready to try again and while I started strong, for reasons I can’t fully explain, I stopped.

The Uphill Start

This time, I rekindled my commitment in late November, easing into it with four runs before officially starting the program on December 2nd. The first week’s routine was clear: a 5-minute brisk walk, alternating 60 seconds of jogging with 90 seconds of walking for 20 minutes, followed by a 5-minute cool down. On Day 1, I covered 1.86 miles it was oddly easy, snow hadn’t fallen yet so the paths were clear, but, the tickle in my throat had started and a fever developed that night. I took the next two days off still keeping a fever between 99-100. The next morning my fever had broke and while I was still sick I felt that because it was all above my chest I could still run. So, Day 2, I ran 1.35 miles and the only thing that got me through it were halls cough drops, that I used to keep my throat from being very stingy from the cold and now snow laid paths. My fever had returned that night but was gone again by morning, this time for good. My next run day was a day later. I probably should have taken off but me being stubborn and afraid I’d lose the small amount of running ability that I had, I decided to run again. Finishing week 1, Day 3, I ran 1.52 miles. These numbers were not just measures of distance but symbols of my determination to persevere.

Battling More Than Just Fatigue

The sickness added a complex layer to my already challenging endeavor. Each 60-second job was not just a fight against physical exhaustion but also a struggle against the draining effects of being unwell. The questions that haunted me were no longer just about how I’d make it to the next walk break or week which is what I questioned my day run but about how I’d continue while my body was trying to heal.

The Power of Resilience

My past attempts at this program taught me resilience, but this week tested it in new ways. The temptation to quit was there, yet something within me refused to give up. Maybe it was the lessons from my previous runs, the unfinished business, or simply the desire to see what i was truly capable of. Whatever it was, it kept me lacing up my sneakers and pressing “start” on the app.

Celebrating the Small Triumphs

Despite the illness, there were moments of triumph. Every time I completed a jog interval, it was a small victory not just over the program but over the additional challenge my body was facing. These triumphs were reminders that sometimes the most significant accomplishments aren’t about how far or fast you go but about the courage to continue despite the obstacles.

Looking Forward with Renewed Resolve

As I look ahead, I’m aware that the illness might carry into the next week, and the journey might get tougher before it gets easier. But I also know that I’ve already overcome more than I thought possible. This isn’t just about reaching a 5K anymore’ it’s about proving to myself that I can keep going, no matter what’s thrown my way.

With each day and each run, I’m not just moving towards a finish line; I’m building a resilience that extends far beyond the track. This journey is shaping me, teaching me about my strength, and preparing me for whatever lies ahead. So, as I continue with the program, I carry not just the hope of completing it but the certainty that no matter the outcome, I’ve already achieved something remarkable.

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