Posted on: 12 Mar 2008

In May of 2007 I quit smoking.  I smoked for 20 years, from age 18-38.

Prior to smoking, during high school, I was very athletic.  I ran varsity track and cross county.  I was a member of a second, community running team.  I played softball, took gymnastics, roller skated, and took every possible phys. ed. or weight training class available.

Then I smoked... as mentioned, for 20 years.  A pack a day or so through the week and probably a pack and a half a day on weekends.  What a nasty habit. 

So... May of 07, I quit smoking.  You can imagine my mood.  I needed to replace the smokers high with something... might as well be the runners high!  So, in June of 07 I put on an old pair of cross trainers and went for a jog.   I think my jog lasted all of about 20 yards.... so I walked.  Every day, little by little, walked, jogged, walked, jogged.  By september I purchased a real pair of running shoes and ran my first 5k with a time of 24:54.  Not bad for a first race.

Since then, I have overcome two injuries, gone through physical therapy and run 4 more races (all 5ks).  I have placed 1st in my age group twice, 2nd in my age group once, and in my most recent race... first overall female, with a new PR of 23:17.   I'm pretty proud of myself.  There is still room for improvement, but this is not a bad record for a 39 year old ex-smoker, who's been running again, for less than a year. 

I feel great.  My lungs feel great.  My body feels great.  I think I'm in better shape now than I was at 16!

While I do favor the 5k races, in October 2008, I will run my first marathon.  Wish me luck!

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