Back on the running track!

I’m back at exercising and it feels great. I couldn’t exercise at all during my pregnancy apart from long walks. Every attempt gave me either a massive headache or a crampy belly. So I decided to give myself a proper break, and only walked to work and back, which amounted to about an hour of walk every day.

It took me about two months to properly recover from giving birth. The first exercise I did was cross-country skiing on our holiday in Lapland. What a fantastic sport! It’s easy to get started even for a complete novice. It’s quite low impact so I wasn’t too hard on myself after such a long break. And it was wonderful to spend time outside in the fresh air. I think most of us Finns have bad experience from our compulsory skiing classes at school as unmotivated teenagers, but it’s a sport too often ignored.

Skiing in the winter wonderland

When I returned back home I’ve started running again. I was surprised how well it went from the very start. Staying out of pubs for a year is probably the main reason. My legs felt tired much quicker than my lungs, which is usually the other way round. I started with a gentle 5K and have been running for 40-60 mins twice a week since mid-January.

Sooo.. it was time to set some goals to keep me going. I registered myself for the Bristol 10K in May to give myself the first goal. I’ve run a few 10K races before, never with particular goals in mind, and never with a proper training schedule. 10K has been quite easy, as I usually run 7-8km on Sundays. Last time I ran a 10K race was a couple of years ago, and I did it in 67 minutes. It’s not very fast, but pretty representative of the speed I like to run. Maybe this year I’ll try to set a goal. Depends a little how it starts to go after a full year’s break.  I’d love to do a 10K in under an hour. So lets say my goal is to do it in 59 minutes. Don’t think it will happen though…

Stretching's like well important, innit.
Stretching’s like well important, innit.

The 10K is really just a stepping stone for the real challenge – a half marathon. I was going to run it two years ago when my back suddenly seized. I still don’t know what happened, but I suspect a dodgy pair of boots. Running 21km sounds absolutely horrific to me, but then again so did 10K before I had done it.

I like the idea of an exercise challenge. I’ve always been a Sunday runner, which means, running when the weather is nice and at a pace that’s nice. For the half marathon I need to be a bit more disciplined and also introduce some kind of a training schedule. Let’s see how it goes!