Tonight I started C25K week 5, and as much as it pains me to write this, it wasn't as bad as I'd expected. And maybe...just maybe...I was hoping it would be bad enough to justify quitting? I'm not claiming it was easy by any stretch, but I walked out the door this evening expecting to want to quit, and that never happened.
My week 5 day 1 routine was a 5 minute warm up then 5 running/3 walking/5 running/3 walking/5 running, then a cool down. And while I ran two 5 minute stretches all 3 days last week, doing it 3 times tonight was quite a workout. But I did it, and I didn't struggle nearly as much with it this week as I did last week. I think I actually find the routines with less intervals but longer ones to be a bit easier to manage. Just like with walking, I get into a groove and am not anxiously counting down to when I get to stop or when I have to start again.
This week is unique in that each of the 3 run routines is different. Day 2 will be 8 minutes running and 5 minutes walking, twice. And day 3 is the scary monster at the end of the road with a 20 minute run with no breaks. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't dreading those days, especially the last one. But at the same time I look at where I started, barely able to run more than 60 seconds straight without feeling totally winded and really sore, and I feel amazing and strong.
My coworker and I have talked quite a bit about the struggle to keep going, and the battling voices in our heads while training. The voice that says, "You are a fucking idiot and should just walk home right now, pour yourself some wine, and not get out of bed for the rest of the weekend." is just barely drowned out by the voice that says, "Bitch you are DOING this and you're amazing and you keep those feet RUNNING!" When it comes to motivation, I'm only mildly embarassed to admit that when I'm struggling to finish a run I've said to myself more than once, "You had a baby. In a plastic pool in your living room. If you can go through labor and deliver a human, you can do anything." And then, other times, I zone out on problems or issues I need to work out in my own head and have practice conversations with 'the enemy'. The only problem is that I'm not sure either of these tactics is going to work for 3.2 miles!
I should also note that I haven't weighed myself in 2 weeks. After 3 weeks of running I hadn't lost anything, so I sort of gave up on the scale. I'm giving myself permission to avoid the scale and focus on the non-scale victories until I hit the end of my training program. I'm about halfway through, and as long as I can maintain my routine through the holidays, I'm going to consider it a victory whether I lose weight or not.
But I can't lie: It would be nice if I stepped on the scale at the end of this and saw a loss.