Tuesday, May 06, 2008

My Life Now Has Purpose

It's about time! I set a small goal for myself recently: to lose 4 pounds in two weeks. I thought that would be a nice little achievement that would start the snowball rolling to some significant weight loss. After one week of semi-disciplined eating and decent exercise, I lost zero pounds. I didn't gain anything, but my goal of 4 in two weeks is in serious jeopardy. Now I have a new goal, nay, a vision quest. That goal is to run a 5k in 22:39 or better. Let me explain from whence this purpose comes.

Some of you may know that I have been known to run. I like to think I'm a "runner" but I haven't run very consistently or well for over a year. I posted a personal best 5K time last April of 24:09. I was motivated to beat another blogger's time of about 24:30, and I accomplished it. I'll admit, I was pretty pleased with myself. But now the gauntlet has been thrown down. It's 22:39 or bust! Why 22:39? Well, apparently Mike Greenberg, of ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike in the Morning and ABC's Duel ran a 22:39 5k. Mike routinely mocks himself for not having any athletic ability, and he's 40. I can't call myself a quasi-runner and have Greeny smoke my best 5K time like that. So it's time to train. I've got a pretty good start. My new neighborhood is pretty hilly, so I get a lot of uphill work in my runs, which builds leg strength and makes running a more flat 5K course much easier. The key is now adding more runs into my week, and increasing my distance. That will be tricky with family obligations going on now, but after the first week of June, it should be easier. And the fact that winter has finally left makes it easier to get the good outdoor runs in, too.

Ideally, this will lead me to run consistently for years to come, and not just off and on like I've been doing. Then I can train for another marathon, eventually qualify for the Boston Marathon and run it. That's still my dream. Also, to truly beat Greeny, I'll have to beat 22:39 at age 40, so I'll have to keep it up for at least 6 more years. The great thing about this, too, is that the weight loss I desire should come hand in hand. The only thing I need is a time frame. I think 6 years is too long to achieve my vision quest. I need something shorter to really motivate me. So what do you think? One year? Six months? Three months? Let me know what you think a good deadline is. All reasonable suggestions will be counted in the vote (under 3 months is just not feasible, I think). I'll have to find a race to enter, too, to document my success, so there will have to be a little wiggle room on the exact time frame. Thanks for your help.

BTW, I'll write a bit on TV and movies a little later.