All this talk of ‘losing the baby weight’ doesn’t really apply to me. I had these extra kilos before I had these kids. I’ve been trying to lose weight for years and have always tried to focus on exercise. That’s been easier when I have a big goal ahead, like a half marathon (many moons ago) or a running event like Round the Bays, which I did a couple of times ‘before babies’. It was a good goal because it wasn’t as daunting as a half marathon but it felt like something to work towards, an achievement.
That was my thinking two months ago when I finally decided to run it this year. I started training way too late and with gym classes, walks with the kids and exercising with friends, I didn’t get in many runs. Not ideal.
Last Friday, with race day a mere two sleeps away, I dragged the whole fam-damily to the Panmure Lagoon where they hung out at the playground and I ran two laps, which is 6km. I arrived back to my loved ones smiling like a loon, proud as punch, thinking myself very clever.
Clever wasn’t quite the word a few hours later when I was trying to sleep and the searing pain in my back, hips, okay EVERYWHERE, was stopping me from drifting off. And I didn’t think myself too smart the next day when I was lying on the couch with heat packs, Nurofen gel, Panadol and a LOT of complaints. The poor bugger who had to listen to those complaints, my husband, suggested I call off the run the next day. I was so miserable, but he had a point. I’m fairly sure being able to move is quite important when you have 8.4km to run.
Well I’m not a quitter! Besides, I’d signed up with my best friend and we have five kids between us and we never get the chance to chat without being interrupted. I would drag this stupid, destroyed body around those bays if it killed me. My friend hadn’t been running either, although she’s in great shape. We agreed to start running and shout out if we felt like stopping.
It was one big gossip session at quite a pace. We hardly noticed we were running and when a water guy said there was only 2km to go, we wondered if he was having us on. Two kilometres! It was the fastest, easiest run I’d ever done and the last part flew by too and as we sailed to the finish line (slight euphemism there) we were mighty chuffed with our efforts. Later we discovered we’d run it in one hour and five minutes, 10 minutes quicker than my personal best (before kids!)
There’s a point to this story, in case you’re wondering. The moral is not that you shouldn’t train for a running race. Let’s be honest, your body will hate you for it and make you pay. No, the point is that exercising with friends is the BEST way to get lots done without feeling like you’re slogging your guts out. My bestie and I are signing up for another event ASAP.