I Just Wanted to See What It Feels Like

September 27, 2016

When it comes to running, I am fully committed to mediocrity. I run exactly three miles, three times a week, at a 6.0 mph pace–the definition of not fast and not slow. I listen to Frank Turner if I’m in a good mood, Beyonce if I’m not, and cruise along, letting my mind wander and my body work just hard enough to sweat. If I reach a hill, I go the other way.

Yesterday I hit the treadmill, because the DC weather was typically swampy and I didn’t feel like putting up with that shit. The gym TV was on and a sports thing was apparently happening, so I stared at the red wall instead. It was exactly as much fun as you think it was.

A girl got on the treadmill in front of me. She was a short and muscular, the soccer-player type. Her warm-up pace was roughly the same as my actual pace, which was slightly annoying. Then she cranked the speed up, faster and faster until her legs were going so quick they almost blurred.

Just once, I thought. Just once I would like to know what that feels like. Does it feel like flying? I bet it feels badass.

Usually a thought like that would come and go without any real action on my part, but that day I was bored enough to start hitting buttons. Seven miles per hour, and then I went up to eight. I probably should have stopped there, but I didn’t. I kept hitting that button until I was at ten miles per hour. For most people, this isn’t a big deal. For me, it was.

I probably looked like this:

But I felt like this:


I survived for half a mile at this pace.

And then I felt like death, so I kicked it back down to 6 mph, which suddenly felt a whole lot easier.

Now I know what it feels like.


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  • Reply Grace September 27, 2016 at 8:20 am

    I know what you mean! I laugh when my friends say they’re just doing an “easy” five miles. How is that easy?! But every now and then, I just want to go for it and sprint as hard as I can. You’re right. It feels badass.

  • Reply Lisa @ Lisa the Vegetarian September 28, 2016 at 9:51 am

    Way to go! I love when seeing someone else do something amazing at the gym inspires me to push my limits too. I guess that’s the benefit of going to the gym vs. working out alone!

    • Reply Art September 29, 2016 at 9:11 am

      Good point about the benefits of going to the gym vs working out alone

  • Reply Keri-Ann @ Getting Fit in Indy September 29, 2016 at 11:57 pm

    Yes!! I run a slower pace than you do. I run about a 12-13 minute mile right now and at the gym, on the treadmill, that is a comfortable 5.0mph. I’m happy there. I haven’t ventured over 6.5 yet – at 6.5 my lungs are on fire and my heart is going to beat out of my chest!
    I see other girls at the gym doing 8mph with ease. One day I hope to be there, but even if I’m not, I’m cool with that! I have to remind myself, my 5.0mph is someone else’s 8.0mph!
    Actually, when I first started running, back in April, my pace was, on average, 17.5 minute miles…
    At the gym, I was “running” at 4.0mph.
    I honestly don’t care that my 12-13 minute miles are “slow” compared to others. I will improve. If I keep going, I’ve already proven that to myself in 6 months.
    And I have to say – you doing a half mile at that pace?! I’m very impressed. I’d have lasted 30 seconds! haha.

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