C25K: Week 1, Day 1

So, the Eldest Daughter and I got up off the couch and embarked upon our 5K journey today.  On the menu for this first week: three days, each one consisting of 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes.  Add in a five minute warmup walk before hand and another five minute cooldown walk at the end, and that's a good half hour of movement.

I put the free C25K trainer app from Zen Labs on my phone, and we headed out to our starting point up the road, where there's a nice little neighborhood to run in.  It has all the qualities a beginning runner could want in a course.  Quiet, virtually zero traffic, and most especially, practically flat.  The later condition is a particularly nice bonus here in western Pennsylvania.

All that we really had to do was start up the trainer, and do what it told us to do.  When the nice lady on my phone said "run", we ran.  When the nice lady said "walk", we walked.  Easy peasy!

Well.  That's the theory, anyways.  In practice, there was a whole lot more effort involved.  If I wanted to describe the actual event itself as it unfolded, I would have to haul out terms like "wheezing", "panting", and "physical wreck of a human being"... but not terms like "regurgitation", "dry heaves" and "collapse", which makes me feel quite happy.

As for Eldest Daughter, she is in far, far better shape than I am, as witnessed by the fact that she could manage to talk in between the jogging sessions. [1]  Me?  I just gasped.  Yet, despite my obvious physical flaws, we managed to finish our first day or running without any major catastrophes.  

Initial impression: They nailed this.  I am their target demographic.

I started off thinking that I might have to repeat this first week a couple of times to get up to speed.  I mean, I'm a sedentary middle aged desk jockey, for crying out loud.  I'm not even a level 1 runner; I'm more like a level 0 runner with d4 HP and a CON penalty.

However... twice while we were jogging, just as I thought, "That's it, I'm done, I can't run any more", the trainer app chimed and told me "Start walking".  A couple of other times, just as I was thinking, "Just a few more steps, come on..." the same thing happened.  Overall, it seems like the routine pushed me just as hard as it could, without pushing me to the point of feeling discouraged.

As far as I'm concerned, that's a pretty major win.  Not being able to keep up with the very first day's workout would have been incredibly demotivating.  As it stands, though, I finished up and thought, "Holy cow.  I can do this!"

Seriously.  I never thought I'd say this, but I'm excited about this now.  I'm looking forward to the next time we get to go out.  I've already done it once, so I know I can do it again... and after that, it's just a matter of doing it step by step until I get to the end.

[1] She's a teenage girl.  If she ever stopped talking for more than a few minutes, I think I'd be alarmed enough that I'd take her to the ER.

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