Well, at Least I Didn’t Throw Up

This weekend I went out and bought possibly the most expensive pair of shoes I’ve ever owned.

They’re running shoes for running and they were on sale. I was going to get a cheaper pair, but they didn’t have those in my size, so I paid the RTFN tax rather than wait for a pair to be ordered. I also bought some insoles and those little ankle socks. Many thanks to pal Josh for shoe advice, the guy at Footlocker for helping me out without trying to sell me more shoe than I needed, and to Raksa, the Cambodian child who made the shoes.

Now, what’s this about running? After several messages from my body and a scale I have decided to begin the Couch to 5k program. (It’s known as C25K, which I thought was short for “Close Encounter of the 25th Kind”, which is defined as “discussing whether the children will be raised Catholic or Blitznortz”.) I got it in my head that I would begin this week, so part of the rush for shoes was not allowing myself time to back out.

C25K is a program designed to do exactly what it says on the tin in 8 weeks. That 5K isn’t walking, it’s running. It’s a bold claim, but the program advises you to do it at your own pace. If you’re not comfortable with jumping up the pace this week, fine, just re-do last week. The 8 weeks is minimum, not necessary.

I started this morning and oh my god, I am out of shape. We started out okay, with a nice brisk walk and then some jogging. (There’s an app where a woman tells you when to do what.) You alternate walking and jogging, and things were going okay until I got to the fourth “let’s jog!” At that point my heart nearly exploded. Since it’s not called “Couch to E.R.” I slowed to a walk about a minute into that fourth jog. She soon said “now walk” so I was okay with that.

Then the fifth “now jog!” came up and I was all, “nah, I’m good.” “Come on,” the app said, sensing I wasn’t jogging, “YOU’RE HALFWAY THERE!”

So, anyway, my phone is now in the ocean.

I continued walking and my side started to cramp, so I cut it short, failing a second time. But look, it’s not like I need to deliver the One Ring to Mt. Doom. Just doing what I did isn’t a bad start. For this first week or two I’ll take her constant haranguing me to jog as a suggestion and not kill myself. (I’d like to change the voice on the app to a man because there is a potential here for Ms. Let’s Jog to ultimately make me hate all women.)

So not a totally auspicious start, but it could have been worse and it’s at least a start. Eventually I’ll earn the shoes (which performed admirably) and make Raksa’s work not be in vain.

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