Monday, January 9, 2012

Castaway Cay 5k

Last summer I started running with the Couch to 5k training program, and the whole reason I started that was to run in the Castaway Cay 5k on our next vacation!

Castaway Cay is Disney's private island in the Bahamas where the cruise ships stop for a day (or in the case of our cruise, for 2 days). And in the morning there is an optional 5k run on the island. (This blog has pictures and more details of the run). I can't imagine a more beautiful place to run a 5k.

I have a rocky history with running. As a kid, I wasn't very active,and although I had to run some at soccer practice my breathing was always very labored. When I was in my mid-20s living in California, I decided I wanted to become a runner and I set a goal of running a half-marathon. I used Hal Higdon's 3-month training program and successfully ran my first half-marathon in Las Vegas. To be honest, it was brutal. I lost a few toenails and got bruises in unmentionable places. Following that, I ran a half-marathon in Kansas City and another one at Walt Disney World. And to be honest, all of them were miserable. Running was always very difficult for me...I never seemed to cross over that threshold where it became easy. After those, I ran some local 5ks and 10ks but never had any speedy times. And then I moved to Texas, and somehow got out of running.

Until last year. When I decided to pick it up again to run in the 5k on our cruise. (Because if there's anything that can motivate me, it's a Disney vacation). And despite my running experience of 10 years prior, it was like I was starting all over again from scratch. The first few weeks of the Couch to 5k program were brutal. I thought I was in good shape from walking and doing the elliptical at the gym, but I wasn't in running shape.

But, after sticking with for a while I started to get back into the swing of running again. I ran a 5k a few months ago in October and did ok. And it still is not easy for me. But I love how I feel after running. I love that running is a sport I can do anywhere with minimal equipment.

And I can't wait to run on Castaway Cay!

Question for you runners out there: Where is the most beautiful place you've run?