Sunday, September 12, 2010

Couch to 5k: Week 2 & Running Goodies

Week two of Couch to 5k is now just a notch on my running shoes. I began the third week today, and am now in the company of my awesome sister-in-law Emily. She's much more athletic than I am, so was able to jump right into my routine without starting from week one. I'm so grateful for her company.

I love the way I feel after a good run. While I appreciate the day off in between each session, there is something inside me feels like I should be running when I'm not. I suppose that will help my heart grow fonder for it... something that I never thought would happen (but here it is... happening).

I've always had zero problems finding nice quiet, relaxing hobbies. I'm excited that I've now found an active hobby. Running (er.. jogging) isn't easy, but it's not turning out to be difficult either. I am finding little ways to reward myself through - with what else, but - shopping. I have to remind myself that these are things that help me stick to the routine. Time to bust out with that Amazon.com credit card. Really, I have made some exciting purchases, but I'm trying not to go too crazy.

Petzl Headlamp: Most days, we're out the door around 5:30 in the morning. The stars, moon, sparse street lamps, and occasional blinding car headlights are the only sources of light at that hour. I was tired of fumbling through the darkness, and this thing really does the trick. It has a few different light settings, but the best feature is that it tilts to a few different angles so I can point it in just the perfect place to see where I'm going. I just have to be careful not to blind people with it when I look up to talk to them. The only thing I didn't care for was the mark it left on my forehead for a little while, but that was only a minor annoyance.



Ultimate Direction Fastdraw Plus Hand-held Bottle: I wasn't expecting to spend more than a couple bucks on a water bottle, but this is a must-have for runners, walkers, or really anyone who exercises regularly. You hardly notice that it's stuck to your hand (thanks to the handle with an adjustable elastic band), it has a zippered mesh pocket to cram in a few necessities, and a perfect little spout to make sure you get just the right amount of water to keep hydrated during your workout. Also - it doesn't leak!!  My mom had one when she was visiting, and I had to get one too. I'm so glad I did. They have a few different versions depending on what you're looking for, and this one was just right for me.



Mueller Jumper's Knee Strap: I have knee issues, but I wasn't going to let it be an excuse to not run. People have done so much more under circumstances of extreme severity, so I knew this was no big deal. I've tried Cho-Pat, McDavid, and Mueller straps, and for me, the Mueller was by far the best of the three. I'd like to see anyone try to find a better deal than at Amazon. I got my orange one (of course I'd choose orange!) for $6.49, but only after we had gotten a black one (that Jeff uses) at Walgreens for $13.99. I wish I had known sooner.



So what's next? Next I get through at least few more weeks before I buy anything crazy. Maybe after week 9 I'll splurge on some running pants/tights. Man, those things are expensive, but I've heard they're SO worth it.
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