Run Fat Boy, Run

Vancouver Sun Run
Sun Run crossing Burrard Bridge

One of our new hobbies is now running.  If you know us and have been following our running training on Facebook, you will know that Frank and I have got off the couch and are going to compete in the  10k Vancouver Sun Run on April 17th, 2011.

Now going from couch potato to runners has been a bit of a journey.  And yes, we are both now hooked! Both of us like the training, the feeling of being able to run (without calling for an ambulance and oxygen mask) and most of all that feeling of feeling super fit.

It started at a New Year’s party, when the Sun Run came up in conversation, the host and hostess suddenly announced that they used to be Sun Run clinic leaders and the Sun Run clinics were the only way to learn to run. So, when we sobered up, it seemed rude not to check out our local clinic and sign up for the “learn to run” programme.

In retrospect, it was the best thing we could have done, when we turned up for the first Saturday clinic, we were wearing old trainers, M&S trackie bottoms and anoraks.  Everyone else looked like they had stepped out of an advert for the Running Room and had definitely done a marathon or two in their time. Luckily a couple of our friends were also there and one or two others who looked like they also had just got off the couch and were equally bewildered.

The clinic leaders were very encouraging and we did start off very gently at first, a one minute run and two minute walk repeated 8 times.  They also showed us how to warm up and stretch and cool down and avoid injuries.

We were given our training schedules and told to do our 2 runs during the week. So far so good, though at this point we were convinced we couldn’t run for the bus let alone around Vancouver.

We also got encouraging emails every week with tips and links and a selection of helpful people coming in each Saturday to advise us on shoes, equipment, diet, exercise and injuries.  Little by little we got our running gear, wind, confidence and ran a bit further and faster. We have the distinct advantage of running around our neighbourhood, amongst the fantastic scenery where the folks of Eagle Harbour, Gleneagles and Whytecliff are nice enough to cheer us on as we jog sweatily by.

“if you follow the programme, you will succeed” everyone told us.  This was good advice, as the only runners we know are either 20 years younger or ex-marathon runners! The leaders apart from being super encouraging, all looked super fit, slim and healthy – an added incentive!

Now we are at week 10 with 3 weeks to go and have gone from running eight minutes to running for over an hour! Sometimes the going gets tough like last week, going up that last hill with another new runner with whom I had been sharing tissues (were we the only people who’s noses run in the cold?) We were trailing at the back when half way up the hill I gasped to here “I dont think I can do this last hill!” She wheezed back “Well just put your big girl panties on and get on with it.” I laughed my way up.

I would have said “knickers” but I loved her sentiments!

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