Saturday, 20 July 2013

Every journey starts with a single step...

Someone said that. Was it Jesus? It sounds like it might be something he'd have said. Or maybe Gandhi. Anyway, someone like that said something similar to that once. And I have just had to pretty much chant it to myself as I took myself on my first 'run' for a long, long time.

Once upon a time, before I moved to York and my life went extremely bizarre, I used to run pretty often. Never very far, but I liked it. It made me thinner and happier and just generally in a better mood. And then I moved to this city and I freaked out for a bit. Turns out starting a new job, living in a new place, knowing no one is pretty tricky.

A few months on and it's still up and down and somehow the running just takes a back seat to the whole getting fired and panicking about money and moving house and yada yada yada.

And then my health implodes and I keep putting off exercise until 'I get better'. I have now realised this isn't going to happen. What I need to do is manage my condition like an adult and stop waiting for some halcyon day when my ovaries stop trying to sabotage everything that is good in the world. I know if I run it will help the pain - it's proven to reduce oestrogen (or increase it - can't remember, I think I have too much rather than not enough. I don't know. I'm not a doctor. And my doctor was apparently barely a doctor either. Anyway.) and will help with endometriosis. Only problem is when the pain is too much to even think about walking you really don't fancy running.

So, as with most other things, it's all in the timing. I'm in a good part of my cycle, I'm in a good mood (just one more week of work left before I begin my career as a novelist/hobo) and it's so hot that I woke up at 5.45am. Perfect.

I went out and walked for a bit. You know, to warm up. Then I started jogging... ahhh, I remember this, this nice feeling, the nature, the breathing, the concentrated thinking, the rhythmic in and out, the meditative thinking... oh shit, what's happening? My lungs are EXPLODING. Yeah, I'd basically forgotten how hard it is to restart running. It feels like going right back to the beginning, and I guess it is. It's been a while after all.

I have a rule when out jogging - basically never walk where other people can see you. So even if my lungs are actually exploding in my chest, if I'm passing people I have to run or jog. You know, so complete strangers who don't give a shit think I'm fitter than I am. It's important. And this does count for the inordinate amount of people who are drinking Strongbow by the Ouse at 6am on a Saturday morning. Are they still out from the night before? Did they get up at dawn for a nice, early morning can of horrible cider? What, in short, gives?

Still, they were polite enough. Only stared a bit and I think one of them may have laughed.

I actually thought running at this time would help me avoid the sun glaring into my eyes and annoying me. Turns out 6am  is too late for that kind of malarkey in this new world where we have actual summers. I think I would have to get up at least an hour earlier for that.

So I ran/jogged/walked all of 3km. Pathetic, right? Except that it's not. Because it's a start. And, as Jesus/Gandhi said: you got to start somewhere.

I'm paraphrasing.

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