As soon as I walked in the gym, Trainer Dan said “You’re going to hate me…” I was instantly nervous because there’s a threshold that I cross during just about every single one of our training sessions when I decide that I “don’t like him.” So, when he so brazenly announced “You’re going to hate me” I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.  I used to let my Type A personality try to mentally plan out what my training session would be like, but it would never end up be anything like I had imagined. So, now I just go in wondering “what will be on the gym menu for today?”

He told me that we had to test my mile time, which typically happens outside. Thank God he was nice enough to let me do it on the treadmill since it was below freezing outside.  He opened his notebook with all of my past measurements and said that I had to beat my last mile time of 15 minutes and 47 seconds. I decided right then that I wanted to finish in 14 minutes and 50 seconds. I spent the first few minutes on the treadmill trying to figure out what speed I would need to run/walk at the reach that goal. Math has never really been my strong point, so I just did a brisk walk at 4.0.  Then towards the end, I realized that wasn’t quite fast enough and I bumped it up to 5.0.   Then for the last minute or two, I really sped it up and I broke out into a full run at 6.7.  I really surprised myself,  I don’t think that I’ve ever put the treadmill past 6.0. I was really running, I felt like a real runner again,  and that burst of excitement pushed me through to the end.

The treadmill distance tracker rolled over to 1 mile and the time tracker stopped right at 14 minutes and 50 seconds! I reached the EXACT goal that I had set for myself. I have shaved nearly 3 minutes off of my mile time from when I first started training.  Dan was very excited and said that I would be under a 10 minute mile in a few months. I can’t imagine what that would be like! My fastest mile time during 5K training has never been under 10 minutes….

Dan gave me a few minutes to recuperate while sitting on a big bouncy ball. He reminded me that my Cheat Day would not be my regular Wednesday, but instead  Thanksgiving Thursday. Gently reinforcing that I should not have a Cheat Day followed by a huge Thanksgiving meal. I was surprised that I didn’t have to get on the scale which I have kind of avoided since the cookie binge debacle. I took a week off from the scale, so that it wouldn’t tinker with my mind and get me discouraged…. We did lots of core exercises, push-ups planks, side planks and then for the first time he had me do sit-ups. “I don’t like this” I panted as more sweat dripped, and he replied “but you do like that your pants are getting too big, do two more sets.” He always has an appropriate come back for my low key sassy mouth. “But we’ve never done sit-ups before” I told him, and he said “That’s because when you first started training with me, you could not do them.”  His advice always works, so I eventually just shut up my whining and do what he says.  It’s amazing to see my body grow and change and do things I couldn’t do before. I can lift more, do sit ups (without someone holding my feet),  hold a side plank and even run a faster mile.  It’s good to measure my progress with the scale, but it’s also really cool to see that I’m getting a strong and fierce new body!


P.S. My eBook Running Into Shape: The Official 5K Training Guide will be on Sale Black Friday (11/29/13) and Cyber Monday (12/2/13) for only 99 cents! Download your instant copy and get the Race Day Podcast MP3 for free.

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