An update on Running. Keep pounding!

sunrise from my window in Washington DC

My running is going okay. I am still slow, but at least I’m doing it more often, which I believe is step 1. The treadmill is mostly where I run despite my constant chatter about running outside. I keep picking the easy option. Sadly, it is also better on the ego since it’s easier to run faster and longer on the treadmill and feel like I accomplished a lot. Trying to replicate these times outside is pretty much crazy talk for me.

I’m also trying to switch the times when I do my running. Instead of waiting till the end of the day when I’m completely exhausted, hungry, annoyed, and bored, I’ve started waking up early. The alarm usually goes off at 6:00am and I’m out the door by 6:15ish. This hasn’t been much of a problem so far and I’m liking the time I now have to watch mindless television in the evenings.

This morning, I took it a step further by warming up (1 mile) on the treadmill and then running outside (4 miles); Tuckerman to Old Georgetown to Rockville Pike, for those of you who live around here. It was a short run but this is what I need to ease into the great outdoors. The weather was perfect. I felt warm and cozy in my choice of layers. I ditched the ipod this time because I wanted to listen to the morning. Things went well till mile 4 when I was running on Rockville Pike with lots of cars and their exhaust. It felt like I smoked a pack of cigarettes. So even though it was 70% downhill run, I don’t think I’ll be doing this route again due to the air pollution. Plus, all downhill is a bitch too sometimes.

I am going to pair my morning runs with some free weight workouts in the evening. Perhaps some Bikram yoga too once a week to combat sore muscles and the lack of regular stretching.

The Cherry Blossom 10 miler is on April 5th and I have another 8k race in Gaithersburg on March 29th. I badly want to not suck. Hopefully my efforts between now and then will pay and I wont be embarrassed with my time.

But beside this whole running more and faster thing, there are other issues that have been on my mind:

1. How to spit properly while running outside. I’m not kidding when I say that I’ve spat on my face somehow. I can never spit far enough. It usually lands back on me. Gross, I know!

2. How to take care of my hair. Washing and drying long thick hair every single day is a bitch. Soon my head will resemble steel wool if I don’t do something. Thus far, I’m using CHI oil stuff that my sister gave me and it seems to help.

3. Chafing is becoming an issue and not in the usual spots. I now bear a “scar” on my chest from bad sports bras. I need to find time to get some new ones. Meantime, it’s hand washing the one I like every single day.

4. How can I carry my phone, keys, ipod, camera, water, metrocard, cash, and a small baby with me while on a run. Kidding about the baby of course.

5. How to not sweat like a man. I don’t think there is much help in this area for me. In all honesty though, I can easily lie and say I ran a marathon after about 2 miles of running.

I end this post with yet another view of the sunrise from my window. Have a great morning.

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Chika Gujarathi is a freelance writer based in Raleigh, NC. She writes about everything from travel, food, books, and family. Her current project includes a series of children's books to teach Hindi. She is a native Tar Heel who has also lived in Washington DC and Chicago.

6 thoughts on “An update on Running. Keep pounding!

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