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Thrive Stories

Jeri Dube's Learning to Run Diary (Part 1)  (Click here for part 2)

April 17, 2012

I'm thinking about signing up for the No Boundaries  - Learn to Run program. I actually have very little interest in running. My main motivation is so I can write this diary and post it on the Thrive site. However, my coworker mentioned shoes as another excellent reason to start.  She says all the kids are wearing Nike Frees in the really bright colors.

April 17, 2012 - a little later that day

Checked out the Nike Frees. I guess they're cute. For a running show. I'm not into the lime green or peachy pink colors. I like white.

I'm now also considering seeing a physical therapist before I start. Or then again, maybe I should just check out Fleet Fett, which I keep referring to as Fleet Street.

April 28, 2012

After a city hike with our dogs, my husband and I stopped at Fleet Feet. My friend was right. The running shoes are spectacular. What a rainbow of choices. I also talked to one of the sales people there. When I expressed concern about my knees, he told me the impact actually makes the knees stronger. Now that's a view I hadn't heard before. He did tell me to contact my doctor to make sure he's okay with  me joining the progralm.

May 1, 2012

I am getting excited enough about the No Boundaries program that I nentioned it to my daughter, an avid runner. She was excited for me. I like to think that one day we'll run together, but she's a real pro -- having done several half-marathons and marathons. When she lived in Berkeley, she ran the Big Sur International Marathon, famous for its crazy, hilly route. Somehow I don't see myself ever doing that!

June  4, 2012

I attended the No Boundaries information session at Fleet Feet's Monroe Ave. store. It was packed. My husband Roger was meeting me there and he was late, so he stood in the back of the room.

I found it interesting and surprising that 4,000 people have gone through the program in the past two years.

I liked the spirit of the what the coaches were saying. The running wasn't about competing or being the best, but rather about doing something good for you. Each coach had a different story about how they got involved with No Boundaries and what running did for their life. I don't think I was quite as inspired as they wanted me to be, but it added some motivation.

I kept looking to see how Roger was reacting to the stories. He looked totally dispassionate and I was pretty sure he was going to say forget it. But he didn't. He was still game, even though the Learn to Run program required running for 40 minutes six days a week. 

I was a little scared of the time commitment, but we decided if we got up at 5:30 a.m. on the days we weren't running with the group, we could manage it. Yeah, 5:30 is early, but I need to get some aerobic activity in my life and this is a good way to force a commitment.  

June 8, 2012

Roger and I both signed up for the program today. I can't wait to go buy my new running shoes.

June 9, 2012
Late in  the afternoon Roger and I went to Fleet Feet to get our shoes and various other running accoutrements. It was a more complex process than I anticipated. Fleet Feet records your feet as you run on their treadmill.

Our sales person took us through an analysis, showing us what she saw on the video. I landed on each foot  pretty straightly. Roger had an angle, so they adjusted for that with padding.

The shoes I bought -- a neon blue Nike -- wouldn't have been my first choice if style was my only criterion. But it was so soft, I felt like it would be great for my knees.

I was also surprised that my typically shopping-adverse husband got into the whole process, even buying himself shorts and a shirt!

June 15, 2012

At 7:33 a.m. we arrived at Genesee Waterways and walked into a sea of blue shirts that all read, Running Changes Every Thing. (This is the shirt that Fleet Feet gives when you sign up for the No Boundaries Program.) While we waited for the workout to begin, we mingled a bit. I was excited to run into Unity's Ann Llewellyn, who I had spoken to on the phone, but never met in person. 

So our first run wasn't a run at all. We walked for 15 minutes, then turned around and walked back. It was pleasant enough, the weather was perfect -- overcast and cool. 

I enjoyed talking to people and chatting with Roger, who mentioned something he had learned earlier in the week. At first contact between Native Americans and  the Europeans, the Europeans were surprised to find that the Native Chiefs were all around 120 years old. What a testament to the pre-contact lifestyle of Native Americans. That certainly helped motivate us on our quest for fitness.

After the workout, there was an orientation session. The most cogent point for me was to be patient. Ellen, one of Fleet Fee'ts owners, made clear her rule, "No whining -- always be happy." Well, I just want to say that just because you whine doesn't mean you're not happy. I actually enjoy whining. 

On our way to Starbucks after the orientation, Roger and I realized this first session had left us frustrated. Maybe it was a bit of a letdown. I wasn't challenged by the walk at all. At times, we were moving as slowly as we don when we walk our dogs. We didn't even run for 30 seconds. 

 Or maybe it was the orientation, which was mostly a repeat of what we heard during the Information Session. Or maybe, just maybe, being patient is the thing that's going to change for us.

June 20, 2012

Our first workout actually running: Wow, what a workout. I felt great afterwards. It seemed like I was experiencing a runner's high, but since I only ran for a total of three minutes in 30-second increments over a total of 40 minutes, I doubt it. Given the 90-some degree temperature, it was probably a sweater's high. (Sweater as in someone who sweats, not a knitted garment you wear when the temperature is cool.)

I also had a lot of energy all evening long. Finally I see why people run.

Click here for part 2