Life of Johanna

A milestone

This Saturday I did something I have never done before – I ran 10 kilometers. I took it really easy and it was only the last kilometer (which was very hilly) that I felt truly exhausted. All in all the run was really joyful, on a dirt track in a beautiful forest and ended up taking me 70 minutes. The actual 10k race is in late August and I guess I am ready now. However I did expect to feel a tad bit more excited, since this is a huge accomplishment for me – I was the chubby child that always came last in school runs and couldn’t even muster a 2k run without stopping several times. I can still remember the feeling of sandpaper in my throat and a heart that felt like it was going to explode.
But I think I have been so into training and chasing times lately that I haven’t really put things in perspective. I have tendency to get single minded about things and now I have this goal of keeping a speed that is less than 6 min per km. I know for many this is easy, but speed is so not my thing. Even my 9 year old daughter can sprint faster than I do, and she hardly exercise at all. I think I need to remind myself that while I am not naturally athletic I do make gains. And I feel proud that I have been so consistent – running twice a week every week since the beginning of May, increasing the distances and speed slightly every week. 
That said, I know I will be a little disappointed if I can’t finish the race in less than an hour, so hopefully I’ll be able to get a little quicker even though training will be sparse in Croatia. Though I’m going to bring my running shoes and heat permitting I’ll try to crank out a few runs at least. The <60 min run is still on the horizon.


  • Anonymous
    July 18, 2011 at 12:57 am

    Congratulations! It's definetely a milestone worth celebrating! And the 10km event will be another celebration!

    I am still the "fat one" in the class and walked a half marathon in May. I too had trained well enough to know I would finish and I beat my goal by half an hour. I picked up a bottle of champagne (and crystal flutes) to share with the friends who also walked. I got emotional at the 12 mile mark – and it too felt disappointingly anti-climatical – rather like watching a movie trailer of the other times in my life when I had quietly taken the wheel of the ship to change course and by sheer determination kept the course change…

    Enjoy chasing "< 60"!!!


  • Joan
    July 18, 2011 at 3:02 am

    Congratulations on your first 10K! I ran my first at the age of 48, and continued to run each year for 10 years, on July 4th, Independence Day. I was very proud of the t-shirt earned by completing each race, and I now miss that great sense of accomplishment. I wasn't very concerned about speed, since the heat was always an issue and I wanted to pace myself carefully to be sure to finish the race. Nevertheless, something happens on race day – the excitement of the day, the other runners and the watching crowds, all contribute to a faster speed than all the training runs! So relax and enjoy yourself, and pat yourself on the back a few times.

  • Gail
    July 18, 2011 at 8:19 am

    I bow down to you! I'm asthmatic and can't run at all. But I can walk for miles and miles.

  • pterion
    July 18, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    Congratulations on your run! Don't worry too much about the speed – it will come. Have a wonderful time in Croatia, I've heard that it's lovely!

  • melissa
    July 18, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    Hey great job! Are you on yet? (I'm squirrellypoo con there if you are!) I've got the Runmeter app for my phone and it is SO motivating to know how fast you're going and how far you've yet to go. Don't worry about speed for your first 10k training – work at getting your weekly mileage up instead and the speed will come naturally. And besides, you'll always get a Personal Best on your first event! 😉

  • Ann's Fashion Studio
    July 18, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    Congratulations! This is truly a great accomplishment 🙂

  • KellysSewing
    July 22, 2011 at 12:48 am

    Congratulations! Quite the accomplishment. I can't run fast at all and have come to accept that. I can run far though! So embrace what you can do.

  • Texan
    August 2, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Congratulations on your run! I run too. I started running a little over 3 years ago in my mid 40s. Love it, but yes its easy to get focused on speed, when I start to think oh I wish I could run faster. I remind myself how much I have improved from when I started! That always makes me smile :O). Your doing great!

  • Antoinette
    August 3, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    Congratulations! Sometimes it is hard to shake who we were and reconcile that image with who we are now. Good luck with the race!


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