In the beginning I ran sprints. I would run 150 yards at a dead sprint, walk for awhile, run another 150 yards and so on. I ran 4 or 5 of these 3-4 mornings a week, and the other mornings I walked two miles (to give my legs to rest). Then I was diagnosed with lung disease, and the doctor told me no more than a slow jog (max heart rate 130). So for a year or two I ran a very slow jog (not much faster than a brisk walk). But my arthritis didn’t like the jogging, so for the past 6 months or so I’ve been walking only (plus going to the gym). Normally, it is okay but I am missing the jogging this week, something just a little faster paced than a walk.
It’s okay. I will survive. I will never forget the six months of being allowed no more than a casual walk (heart rate below 100) and how great it felt when the doctor increased my heart rate allowance to a brisk walk. I will also never forget that I had a 50% chance of living the rest of my life with an oxygen tank. But it’s also okay to yearn a little bit for a jog. I’m sure next week this feeling/wish will have passed.
I learned something shocking today — that most people have to fight through their minds telling them to stop during exercise. And that people feel burning in their muscles when they exercise. Whoa!!
I am in my 40s and never knew that happened – my mind never tells me to stop, and I never feel burning in my muscles (I always go until my body simply can’t go anymore, but I never feel burning when exercising). For example, if I am lifting weights that I can do 5 times, and try for a 6th rep, I might not be able to finish that rep, but it never ever hurts or burns during that attempt – my body simply just won’t lift it.
I’ve always been able to outhustle other people and have been surprisingly strong for my weight (155), and able to sprint at full speed a lot farther than most people — now I know why! It isn’t discipline – it’s that I don’t feel the misery or pain that most people do. Usually I fight the other problem – my mind doesn’t want to stop and I have to quit so that I don’t feel too much pain the next day or suffer from low blood sugar.
Wow! It must suck for most people to exercise – I can’t imagine. I suddenly feel very lucky. I can’t take credit for it – I was just born that way. SInce I was a very young child people have always commented about my ability to run and exercise forever (I remember in high schoool a teammate saying he hated guarding me in basketball because I never got tired 🙂 ).