I had a non-scale victory today, which is good because the scale has been brutal to me over the past couple of weeks (I've gained 4 pounds). I woke up this morning, dragging myself from the bed because it was still dark at 5:30am. I always make sure I look out the bedroom window to check for rain cuz if its raining, I am going to crawl back into bed. To my luck, there was no rain and the sky was a bright but deep red from the soon to be rising sun. With half shut eyes, I pulled on my workout clothes and brushed my hair up into a ponytail. I opened my eyes wide enough to put in my contacts and headed downstairs.
The weather guy from NBC15, David George, told me last night *via the tv* that there was a strong change of thunderstorms this morning. So I had to make a point to check the radar for rain before I left. There it was, a huge swath of thunderstorms about 20 miles west of my house. I was pretty sure I could get a 30 minute workout done before it would start raining, atleast I was hopeful. So I turned on my iPod and walked out the door. I could see the sky was kind of dark to the west but it wasn't threatening.
I hadn't run since Friday so I knew I would be able to push myself a little bit but because of the impending rain, I would have to do a shorter route than what I had been doing lately. I picked the 2.3 mi route, downhill the whole way out and uphill the whole way back in. Sometimes it annoys me that we live on the highest point in the neighborhood, just saying. I did my usual 5 minute warm up walk and starting jogging. I jog/run really really slow. But I just kept going. I was aiming to go 15 minutes without stopping. I was really hopeful I would be able to go longer than that but I didn't want to set my sights too high. At my usual turn around point, I decided to take a left and ran up the hill a little bit, just long enough to catch a bolt of lightening hit the ground to the west. That was just enough to make me decide I needed to start heading back to the house.
A little side note here. For those of you that knew me when I was younger, thunderstorms freaked me out! I was so scared of storms, I used to make my friends' parents drive me home in the middle of the night if there was a storm because my bedroom was the only safe place in the case of lightning and thunder. I know I was pretty lame. I used to hide under my covers of my bed during the heat of the summer because I thought that if I was under the blankets the lightning couldn't get to me. I've gotten a lot better, I actually enjoy the sound of thunder as long as it is not associated with rotating wall clouds. So me being outside during an impending thunderstorm with lightning is a huge thing for me.
I want to say thank you to the bug that flew down my open mouth right after I turned around. It was at that point in my throat that caused me to instinctively swallow. So swallow I did, until it got stuck and caused me to cough, hard! But I kept running. Hack hack..no bug. So I swallowed again. I have no idea what was in my stomach the rest of the day. I hope it died quickly. I wanted to stop running and walk up the hill leading into my neighborhood. Trust me, this is not much of a hill and more of a casual grade. But I kept going. I rounded the corner into my neighborhood where it flattens out for just a little bit. My legs felt good, my lungs did not. But I just kept going. I didn't let myself eye the next mailbox and say "I will run until that mailbox and then walk". I just kept looking onto the next corner. Looking at my watch, I was past the 15 minute mark. I was going to keep going.
The next time I looked at my watch, it was 2.5 minutes later at 17:30. My mind was fighting with me. I really wanted to walk so I slowed down my already snail pace. I knew I could probably walk faster than I was running. The next time I looked at my watch, I only had 90 more seconds to make it to 20 minutes of straight running. I could do 90 seconds! It was really the longest 90 seconds of my life! It was like I was looking at my watch every 10 seconds. I really pushed myself during the last 30 seconds. I'm sure my neighbors thought I was crazy talking out loud telling myself to just keep going. I counted the last 10 seconds to myself, probably a bit faster than what my watch was telling me. I DID IT! I ran 20 minutes without stopping. It was time to walk.
I finished the rest of the route with another minute of running and a few minutes of walking to cool down. It just started to barely sprinkle when I walked up my driveway. The thunder was getting pretty loud at that point. Maybe a little thrill of fear ran through me before I brushed it off.
I mapped out my distance for my 20 minute run and it came out to 1.85 miles! Go me! I ran my first mile only a couple of weeks ago. This is huge for me!