I’m not a 5K kind of girl. In fact, I use a walker and a wheelchair. I’m in severe pain most days and not what you would call "sporty." I do, however like a good challenge. When I was walking to strengthen my legs, my friend Mccourtt challenged me to walk a 5K. Well, it was on! So I set out to walk one.
Cindholm talked to me about pedometers on our first mall walk. I bought a good one with what I thought was a sturdy bull clip by Omron. It works very well but does have a tendency to fall off, so I recommend buying the safety strap with clip for it.
I knew I needed help, so my nephew Josh and I would take walks over the summer for training, walker in tow. He is quite the taskmaster! I would do anything for him, so when he says he wants to go, I go! That’s good inspiration. I would count steps at first--miles were far away. We rested frequently, as my walker has a seat and I drank a lot of water.
Vettechinhippie helped me train three times a week, walking with my walker through shops and malls. We did errands, walked all of the aisles of some stores, and took rest breaks frequently. Eventually my pace got quicker and my legs stronger. Vettechinhippie is a very sweet friend who worked out with me through thick and thin, whether I had a painful day or she had many errands. We adjusted.
BB_4_ME helped me train in the water and on recumbent machines at the gym to strengthen my muscles. She is a great source of positive energy. She is full of ideas and has been through chronic pain herself, so she is familiar with modifying exercise to fit individual needs.
Kind_heart101, my husband, then set up my iPod to do very accurate step, distance, and calorie counting for me. After seeing how much pain I was being caused by my training, and how tired he got trying to train with me ONE day, he declared I couldn’t do a 5K. I declared if I did, I got a Tiffany bracelet!
Like my new bracelet?
It took over a year of working up to it and sitting for breaks, but I finally reached my magic number while walking the mall with Cindholm. I honestly didn’t think I would make it, but Cindy was very encouraging. She has inspired me for a long time with her walks for charities and penchant for daily LONG walks. 10,000 steps a day is nothing to her. It was an honor to have my walking hero at my side at the very moment of my victory.
When the pedometer clicked over, I felt so proud, like jumping and yelling to everyone. I can’t describe the jubilation in my heart or the severe pain of my body by that point. The jubilation won out though. I felt like anything is possible and I wanted to tell you all that. Part of the reason I wanted to do a 5K is to show you that YOU can do anything you set your mind to do. If a woman with herniated, degenerated disks, pinched nerves, bad knees, fibromyalgia, and arthritis can walk a 5K with a walker, YOU can take courage that you are capable of aiming for better every day.
The first thing I did was call my husband to tell him I walked a 5K with the walker. Then I called Mccourtt (my inspiration) and Vettechinhippie (my trainer). My best friend from college, Hoosiergirlindy was so very proud of me, as was my other best friend from high school, Lioness822.
With all of these SparkPeople on my side, I beat the odds. The sense of community is beautiful here. Join your regional teams and look for people to support your efforts to explore new challenges--you can do it!
Start our Spark Your Way to a 5K program today!
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