Wanting to start distance running?

Before I start, I'm a sprinter, the longest race I EVER did in high school was the 400m. The thought of running more than 1 lap made me dizzy. The main reason for that was I grew up being told that running = lows. So I decided (in my young gradeschool head) "if I spend less time running, then I'll get less lows!" and so... I became a sprinter.

But recently, I found a plaque in the basement. It was awarded to my dad for having the freshman mile speed record at his school, with a time of 4:46. I asked him about it, and he told me that all he did was run home from the bus stop "it was a mile, UP HILL both ways!" Looking at him now, you couldn't tell, but that blows my 6:30 mile time out the window!

It got me thinking, what if I was actually meant to be a distance runner? I was always pretty mediocre at sprints (at least, competitively) So now that I can manage my bloodsugar on my own, I'm thinking about starting to run distance.

The question is, how do I start? I can only go about a mile and a half before having to walk. Should I just run a mile every day like my dad did?

I started running before I knew I had diabetes… But before I started running I couldn’t run more than 100 meters before taking a walk break. You being able to run for a mile and a half without stopping is fantastic! I’d suggest running the 1.5 miles and then walking half a running a mile. That brings you up to 3miles or 5k. There are 5k races everywhere almost every weekend so you’ll be able to get out and race, network with other runners and do something very healthy for yourself.

As for incorporating your diabetes in to it. Test and test often especially when you first start so you know what your body has a tendency to do when it runs. I personally can run 3 miles with no food or sugar. But my liver will dump all it’s glucose and I’ll go low later in the day. It’s a good idea to eat a bit before and after you run with carbs and protein. Also, I never ever run without my road id bracelet cause you just never know.

There are tons of 5k plans online as well if you need more help getting started. I also like new shoes, but hey I’m a girl and what girl doesn’t love new shoes?

that mile and a half is about 15 - 20 minutes. I might be able to run longer, but Lynchburg is known as "the city of 7 hills" for a reason lol. theres nowhere to run on a flat surface. the hills around here are KILLER

Most of the 5ks I see advertised around here are for charity. (i know this sounds REALLY selfish... but i don't make enough to spend $10-$20 every weekend until i get a bit better)

thanks for the advice! I'll start tomorrow :)

The guy who won the 5K I ran in on Saturday ran 14:31 or 4:41/ mile! I have bought shoes from him at the local running store, really nice guy.

I think though that the way to run 5K is just to go out and do it. I read some running books when I started getting into running that may have some useful suggestions about form and are probably available at the library? I found the books by Jeff Galloway has some interesting suggestions, like running different ways, sort of according to how you are feeling it. He has books for running in general and more specific ones for running marathons that are also interesting. He has some stuff that sounds really cheesy but, if you imagine a giant rubber band pulling you down the street when you are smoked 22 miles into a marathon, every little bit helps?

Re diabetes, I think that it's a good idea to figure out how to get insulin on board out of your system as "pushing" yourself can sort of kick insulin into gear if you have a couple of stray units or even tenths of units going. For 5K, I also don't usually bother with a lot of snacking or insulining but have like a glass of skim milk if my BG is lower than I want it to be.

Hi Timmy..

I would read a few books, maybe join a running club or at least download a running programme to stick to, there are hundreds on the net. From couch to 5k, to plans for running ultra marathons.

Just try and get into a routine of running regularly, ensure you warm up properly and are giving yourself time for recovery.

Set yourself a goal, e.g. I want to run a 10k in 12 weeks in under 50 minutes etc etc..

Interval training helps (fartleks), doing this one day a week will really help with your speed and endurance.

I tend to run 3 days during the week and the do a long run on Sunday mornings. The thing I like about running is that you improve slowly and it's incremental.

Get yourself a decent pair of shoes, go to a proper running shop, have them look at your gait and then you can find a pair that are suitable cheap on line. I would love to support my local running shop, but they charge three times the amount that internet stores do for the same pair of trainers! I recommend Mizuno, Asics, Brooks.. Nike Air Pegasus are nice and light as well.

Get yourself a decent running belt as well if you want to do distance running, as you will want to ensure you have carbs etc with you at all times.

This site is good for the diabetes side of stuff..


Good luck.

I've been a distance runner for years. Did many marathons and half marathons. The trick to becoming a strong and consistent distance runner is slow and steady progression. When I first started running, the most I could do was about 1/4 mile. From there, I went to a 1/2 mile, and then a full mile. And, well, you get the idea. Every week I did just a wee bit more. When I started training for marathons, it was the same thing -- I ran with a training group and every weekend our "long run" got a tad bit longer, until we were ready for a marathon!

Managing D and distance running can be a little tricky. If you're not on a pump, you will have to adjust your basal insulin dosage the day before. This is one thing that I love about a pump - before my run, I can just dial down my basal rate and I will generally be ok.

ok minor setback... I hyperextended my elbow AND bruised a rib today!

I tried wrestling someone about 70lbs heavier than me... and I got bodyslammed. He picked me up and then fell on top on my outstretched arm. And I elbowed myself in the ribs with the other arm...ow

I guess I'll start running when I can take full breaths again.

Ouch! Too bad. I avoid wrestling these days. I took some Kung Fu classes after I moved but wasn't entirely comfortable being thrown onto unpadded carpeting and decided that running was enough fun for me.

ok I THINK im good to run now. my ribs only hurt when I reach up now. My elbow still hurts a bit, but I can move it a lot easier now.

I got myself some new shorts (not running shorts, but some lacrosse shorts. I refuse to wear anything with less than a 7 inch inseam. lol) and I also got some brooks running shoes.

now I just need to work on my tan so I can look good while doing this! :p

? 5 1/4" all the way!!

I think I still might be scarred from track. Those things had like 2" with a slit all the way up to the waistband.

they technically weren't allowed within the school's dress code!

On some of the longer runs I did (like 5?) last summer, I had the longer shorts and the stray fabric would sand chunks out of my leg so since then, I pretty much run in the shorter shorts...eeek!

Until I get to that point, I think I'm going to keep my modesty. I just can't do it!!! lol

you will have to graduate to compression tights ;)

That's what I was wearing in my Diabetes Forecast "centerfold" shot!

no thanks! :p

and at least I'm not wearing those 13 inch basketball shorts.. I have no idea WHY people think its cool to trip yourselves up with them.

official diagnosis: torn tendon in my bicep... at least its not broke!

Ouch! Can you run with it?