Because the important moments in life just don’t fit in a status update! I started this blog when I was training for my first ½ Ironman, (70.3 miles) to record what I hoped would be growth and progress but ended up being a huge learning experience. Although fitness is one of the key ingredients to a happy life, it certainly isn't the only ingredient. My blog has evolved to document growth, progress and setbacks in other areas too. From my surprise proposal in Rome and wedding in the fall of 2013, to Mom's devastating stage IV cancer diagnosis and death 2 weeks after I found out I was pregnant. Who knows what shape it will take, but thanks for being along for the ride.

Friday, June 3, 2011

No time to exercise?

Sometimes, people ask why I keep signing up for marathons. Sometimes, I ask myself why I keep signing up for marathons. I guess do it because being signed up, and being in training, is the only thing that forces me to be consistent with my long runs. It is the only thing that forces me to be committed to this lifestyle. And, that's what it's all about: the 4 months of training leading up to race day, not the day of. Last weekend, I planned a weekend in Arizona with my friend. Because I couldn't do my 16 miles before I left, I had to do them on Memorial Day. Did I want to get out there on my day off after flying back from a fun-filled, sleep-deprived weekend and run for 2 hours and 42 minutes? No! But, I had no choice because of my training schedule. I landed and came home for a 45 minute nap, then headed out to do my run by myself. I finished just before it got dark. If I wasn't signed up, I would have easily missed it, blaming it on being too busy. But since skipping it was not an option, I had to fit it in.

And two days ago, I was invited to a work PLC conference in Vegas this Sunday - Wednesday. A group of people are leaving on Saturday and while I would love to travel with them, I can't because I have to get in my 20 miles before I leave. And now, I have to do my long run on Saturday instead of Sunday, so I also had to cancel my Friday night plans in order to go to bed early and meet a running partner at 6am tomorrow morning. With a little bit of tweaking, the time to exercise can be created.

It's easy to say or think we don't have time for exercise. I know, because I used to think/say I didn't have time when I was in college and working part time. People who say that, like I did, probably actually believe themselves, but it's just not true! In reality, no matter how busy we are, we can always find the time to exercise. The year I ran 4 marathons (2004) was also the year that I was working full time, in graduate school and also working on my 600 counseling internship hours. That's a little busier than being an undergraduate and just working part time...when I claimed that I didn't have the time.

Imagine if each person spent the same amount of time running (or walking!) that they do on facebook, or watching TV. It only takes 16 minutes to get out there and walk one mile. And, you burn the same amount of calories walking a mile as you do running a mile. Anyone can fit that in every day.

Everyone is busy! Exercise has to become incorporated into our normal routine or it will fall by the wayside. And if we do; if we make exercise a priority, it will happen. No one skips brushing their teeth because they're too busy! Granted, exercise takes a little longer than brushing your teeth, but you get the point.  Not only should we do it to enhance the quality of our life, but the quantity of our life. If we don't do some form or exercise on a regular basis, chances are we're ultimately gonna have less time overall...catch my drift? Yes, I'm talking about the likelihood that without exercise, you can count on dying sooner.
So, pick something! Sign up for your first 5K, 10K or half-marathon. Commit to walking a 1/2 marathon or, running your 10th marathon. I have a friend who has ran way more marathons than me and she just signed up for her 1st ultra marathon: 50 miles in celebration of her 50th birthday. Pick something and train! And, you will find the time. Then, you'll be in the same boat as me...forced to work the other details of your life around what is really important: your training. It's a good boat to be in, and it's sailing for a long time.

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