Runners, when does running become enjoyable?



  • MzPix
    MzPix Posts: 177 Member
    Hey, we are actually in a similar boat. I also have compromised lung function. I was diagnosed with emphysema in 2009. I also experience hip and knee pain, but not *while* I am jogging. (I use the term jogging because I am nowhere near an actual “run.”) The knee pain tends to flare up more when cycling. The hip pain acts up at night.

    I actually look hysterical when I jog. I’m short and fat. I have no speed whatsoever. My full on run-as-fast-as-you-can-sprint is like 3.8 mph. I pant. I’m all bad-posture bent forward taking little baby steps like those old men shuffling down the nursing home hallway in slippers when they have to pee really bad. Yup. That’s what I look like when I’m running.

    So, based on all of that, I darn well better get some kind of enjoyment out of it! Most of my enjoyment of jogging is more when I’m done than during my workout. It is a bit grueling at the time, but the satisfaction afterward trumps any unpleasantness. I feel like it strengthens my mind as much as my body. It’s a break for me too. I can get away from all the demands of my home and family, all the demands of work, all the demands of society, and just think about me, or think about nature, or not think at all.

    Oh, and +1 to the relaxing with a drink afterward, although my choice is Merlot.
  • jenn26point2
    jenn26point2 Posts: 429 Member
    Huh. Ok, now looking up minimalist running shoes. Didn't even know they were used for running. I thought minimalist shoes were more for weightlifting! Hey, does anyone have any recommendations for places to look for pain-free or low injury running tips? I've read Chi Running, but it's not entirely clicking.

    Be cautioned, transitioning from a normal shoe to a minimalist shoe can cause a lot of calf pain as your stride and foot placement changes. Go slow in those. I would recommend going to a real running store (not a chain store) and getting fitted. They should watch you run and help you get what is right for you. Try on all sorts, and go with what feels best. A good shoe shouldn't need breaking in (the exception being your first pair of minimalist shoes if you are used to traditional heel-toe drops). A good store will let you return them if they don't work out.

    I completely agree with this. most standard sneakers have a 12MM drop (the drop is the difference between the ball of your foot and your heel when standing on a flat surface - ie the sole of the sneaker is flat, but your heel is 12MM higher than the ball of your foot). When I last got fitted in July, I got a sneaker with an 8MM drop. It seriously took me about 4 weeks before it felt somewhat normal, and my calves were CRAZY sore after my runs. There are still days now (after almost two months and more than 80 miles using them), that the drop feels a bit weird and my calves still get sore - especially on my long run days. The guy at my running store who fitted me recommended sticking with the 8MM for at least 6 months before trying a sneaker with the next drop (4MM)....and even then, he said you should alternate between the 8MM drop and the 4MM drop for at least a month, because that is even more difficult to adjust to than going from 12MM to 8MM. Then stick with the 4MM for at least 6 months (he said many people wind up staying at 4MM for a year or more) before moving down to a "true" barefoot running shoe like Vibram that has no drop....but he also said that a lot of people end up sticking with a 4MM drop and not going further.

    as far as when it becomes enjoyable, I'm hoping soon LOL :) I restarted running in May to train for a triathlon. I HATED it. WIth a fiery hot passion. I couldn't even run for 2 minutes without having to stop and walk. But I stuck with it. I've gone from a 15 minute mile to a fairly consistent 11:30 minute mile in about 12 weeks. I've gone from barely making it through 2 miles in a half hour to running 5 miles (with only about 2 minutes of walking) in under an hour. Now, I am working on my speed, because I want to get to a sub-30 minute 5k time. Are there still days when I have to walk a bit? Definitely. But there are also days where I run the entire time. Do I love running now? Not even close. But I don't hate it any more. I am starting to kinda like it a little bit. Of course, that may change once it gets too cold and snowy to run outside, and I have to run on the dreadmill...but hopefully I will survive winter and come spring, be consistently running sub-10 minute miles for 10k's :)

    I agree with most of this regarding the transition period, but I cannot say any of it is untrue, so try it and see if it works. For ME, I had quit running for about 8 months. While I was off, I wore VFFs to walk in for my daily walks and wore minimalist shoes at work. If I wasn't in VFFs or my minimalist work shoes, I was barefoot. Given all that time off and out of "proper" shoes, my dr told me I could start running in VFFs and would likely have no issues (she's a marathoner and knows a thing or two about athletics). I had no calf pain and no complications that others experience. But i was also extra cautious about stretching and backing off if things felt weird. I started running in my VFFs doing C25k and now I'm up to 13 miles in them with zero complications. I'll be running my first half in them this weekend. I love them.

    Anyhow, definitely consider changing the style of shoe for that knee/hip pain. You might find that alone will help you enjoy running. Running in pain is anything but enjoyable. My first 6 half marathons were done in an injured/recovering state thanks to stupid heel toe drop throwing things out of alignment and causing strain. Good luck!
  • USMCnetty90
    USMCnetty90 Posts: 277 Member
    I have just started running again and found this to be pretty motivating:

    I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS!!!! thank you for sharing.

    I too have just started running - ran last week just because i was super crabby and was hoping to "uncrabby" myself... it worked but more because I ran into swarms of gnats and had little gnat carcasses stuck to my sweaty face after my run!!! (last time I run by the river in the dark!
  • SRB8710
    SRB8710 Posts: 90
    Running is about beating yourself. For me it was AMAZING when I ran my first 5k. After that I was hooked with always beating my time or the distance I thought I could run.
  • lilfurson
    lilfurson Posts: 190
    If you're looking for it to become easy, that'll never happen. To me it's about staying healthy and the benefits it has. It gives me goals and things to strive towards. I find it weird to not run most days now.
  • bcf7683
    bcf7683 Posts: 1,654 Member
    When I'm finished and I crack open the first beer

  • scottb81
    scottb81 Posts: 2,538 Member
    It becomes really enjoyable after your aerobic fitness has increased to the point that you can do an easy run at a reasonable pace at a relaxed effort level.

    In my experience, to get to that point requires a lot of non-enjoyable running for a long time.
  • meeper123
    meeper123 Posts: 3,358 Member
    I like to zone out and watch the world around me it helps me feel more peaceful and honestly makes me want to go on :)
  • alison2429
    alison2429 Posts: 236 Member
    When I'm finished and I crack open the first beer

    Agree with this. I can't run at the moment but when I did I don't think I ever really ENJOYED it. I ran so that I could tell everyone I was a runner, it kept my weight under control and I could still eat (and drink) within reason what I liked. I hope to get back to it but even at my 'peak' I wasn't that great - I did get my breathing under control after a few years (yes YEARS!) and the feeling at the end when you are showered and dressed is awesome. I'll get back to it one day..........:drinker:
  • walzllw
    walzllw Posts: 105 Member
    I accidently became a runner. I started out walking faster and faster. One day I decided to jog and would jog for 3 minutes or so at a time. Now I regularly run 4 miles and sometimes 5. I hate the first 1.5 miles or so until I get a good sweat going and I think about the fact that I can run over a mile..........3 miles. When I am done and I am sweaty and feel relaxed and sore I get a sense of pride and know I have done my body good. It also helps that I am getting toned fast and my clothes fit better!
  • You talking about runners high and it can be achieved after a whole lot of work. It is addictive and makes you feel great. But you probably won't start getting runners high until you get into great physical condition. You will know when you get it. But if you have having problems with your leg and hip you might want to consider a different type of activity.
  • madmiss
    madmiss Posts: 219 Member
    Running is like a bad marriage. You end up getting hurt, you drink a lot, and you keep coming back for more.

    Haha this is awesome ;)

    I've also been doing the c25k program and am on wk 7 right now. Absolutely loving the longer runs. To think I could barely run 60 seconds a few short weeks ago is an amazing achievement and inspiration to me. I love trying to beat my personal best every time - I'm very competitive, even if it is only with myself! There hasn't been a day yet I have not wanted to run, I wish I could go every day! I never thought I could do this. It's not easy or effortless by any stretch, and my knees hurt like crazy for the first 5 weeks, even with proper shoes - but now it's starting to get better, I'm starting to get a stride, and I can see a light at the end of the tunnel which is the 5k I signed up for in 3 weeks! Oh and im pretty sure my music is the ONLY way I could do this!!!!
  • madmiss
    madmiss Posts: 219 Member
    I have just started running again and found this to be pretty motivating:

    I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS!!!! thank you for sharing.

    I too have just started running - ran last week just because i was super crabby and was hoping to "uncrabby" myself... it worked but more because I ran into swarms of gnats and had little gnat carcasses stuck to my sweaty face after my run!!! (last time I run by the river in the dark!

    Omg that stuff is funny!!!!!!