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The First Half Mile

October 4, 2011
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I had my son snap this picture with my camera phone on Sunday.

It might look like nothing much. Just me, making spaghetti.

But I felt the need to save this moment for posterity.

Because maybe half an hour prior to making the spaghetti, I finished running half a mile. All at once, not broken up with walking. In all, I went two miles that evening, including the half mile run and about a quarter mile of sprinting in spurts.

Half a mile is a big deal to me. In January, I could just barely walk half a mile. The idea of running at all (even at the barely-faster-than-a-walk pace I run at) was ludicrous. And this week, on Sunday, I’ll go a little further. Maybe three-quarters of a mile? Maybe just one more one-ninth of a mile lap. I don’t know.

I do know that running a half a mile felt like some kind of epic body vs. mind battle. And that I spent the last half unsure if I could make it. And that I was still grinning like a fool as I made dinner for my kids when I got home.

Someday a half mile will not feel like such an accomplishment. And maybe that me vs. me battle will be reserved for three miles, or five, or ten. Or a marathon. But this is a milestone, too, and I’m totally owning it.

I also know that in the last 10 months, I’ve gone from my treadmill shutting me down 10 minutes into a 2.5 mph walk to being able to run for half a mile. I’ve gone from not being able to do a single assisted pullup to doing 3 sets of 10. I’m stronger and fitter. And I still weigh the same as I did in January, nearly to the ounce.

I’ll be 40 on October 28. I’m going to run a mile that day. It’s my birthday present to myself. Stay tuned!

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. October 4, 2011 12:54 pm

    Congratulations! See, this is how people should be measuring their health: small, but steady improvements in functioning, not how or if the scale moves. If you were following the traditional health model, the fact that you are about the same weight now as you were when you began would be so discouraging that you might give up.

    Instead, you’re focusing on a better metric, performance, the improvement of which you can actually witness and get an actual sense of satisfaction from.

    Keep us posted on your ongoing journey!

    Peace,
    Shannon

  2. Fab@54 permalink
    October 4, 2011 12:55 pm

    YAY Shaunta!! You Go Girl.

    As someone who – because of physical problems- is still in your past predicament (can hardly manage a 2-block brisk walk) I admire your accomplishment! Weight be damned, who cares. You are fitter than a short time ago and motivated to be more so. That’s great! Keep us posted on your progress. Be proud!

  3. Fab@54 permalink
    October 4, 2011 5:59 pm

    And by the way… we both have the same stove. Do you love it? I love mine…..

  4. SherryH permalink
    October 4, 2011 8:23 pm

    Woo hoo! That is so awesome – congrats on your milestone. (And congrats on having enough energy after your run to come home and make dinner. Yet another sign of improving physical endurance.)

    Go, you!

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