If I Can Do a 5K, So Can You


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  128 comments   :  25,903 Views

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! 

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    WOW what a great story Congratulations šŸ‘ Well done girl!!! I have a similar story with similar body aches & issues and Iā€™m 71. I joined a senior mall walking group who have access to malls at the crack of dawn. I was thrilled when I hit 5k as my usual was 2k or less. I hit 8k two weeks ago so now my goal is 10k when the weather gets nicer. I even bought trekking poles. I am thankful for my Fitbit & Spark, that keeps me honest. - 2/20/2018   11:26:31 PM
  • 127
    Congratulations Beth. What a wonderful achievement. You are truly an inspiration to all of us. - 1/16/2018   1:36:29 PM
  • 126
    Beth, congratulations!! Good luck and keep up the good work! The Lord bless you! - 1/6/2018   1:02:01 PM
  • 125
    Thanks Beth. You are amazing. - 12/29/2017   6:07:26 PM
    I am very happy for you! I am a firm believer that we can do whatever we put our minds to, Congrats on your progress! - 12/22/2017   9:46:23 AM
  • 123
    Beth, I'm so happy for you! - 11/13/2017   1:54:46 PM
  • 122
    AWESOME!!! - 10/19/2017   4:31:40 AM
  • 121
    You are beautiful and amazing! An inspiration to me and so many others! Keep on Sparking! - 10/18/2017   7:33:46 AM
  • 120
    Amazing! You go Girl! - 10/15/2017   12:51:52 PM
    Thanks for the encouragement. I now believe if you can do it with all of your ailments, I know that I can do more. - 9/26/2017   9:00:07 AM
  • 118
    Way to go! - 8/25/2017   3:38:22 AM
  • 117
    You are inspirational. I have tears in my eyes over your success. I do believe that I can do it. Thank you thank you. - 8/17/2017   10:10:35 PM
  • 116
    Thank you for sharing and being an inspiration. Time for me to stop making excuses and run the Peachtree Road Race next year - 8/17/2017   8:45:22 AM
  • 115
    Very inspiring! - 7/28/2017   8:24:25 AM
  • 114
    Beth, YOU are SO AMAZING AND INSPIRATIONAL !!!!! I take my hat off to you for your FANTASTIC ACCOMPLISHMENTS { AND YOU ALWAYS WRITE A GOOD, INTERESTING AND PERTINENT BLOG!!!!!!} Kudos to you !!!! You keep us SParkers going!!!!! Excellent blog!!!!! - 7/22/2017   9:20:29 PM
    Thanks - 7/16/2017   7:24:48 AM
  • 112
    Thank You so much for your blog full of inspiration for me. I got all filled with tears of joy. I am so proud of you and your words have given me encouragement to go for the 5K. Thank You again - 6/6/2015   10:46:27 AM
  • 111
    I did my first 5K for my 50th. Like you I was in a lot of pain so it took a long time before I was ready... but deciding to do it, the IMPOSSIBLE, was exciting and motivating. Thank you so much for sharing and I hope your journey continues with all the help you got from your friends... I think it is the journey that is really what it is all about. Justyna - 2/20/2015   10:07:19 AM
  • 110
    I new that was a Tiffany sterling silver charm bracelet go girl! - 1/19/2014   7:38:40 PM
  • 109
    Your story is so inspiring. I will remember your words when it is tough to keep going. Your bracelet is beautiful and so are you. - 4/19/2013   8:29:28 PM
  • 108
    Thank for sharing your story and inspiring others including me to let go of their excuses and push forward towards their goals...step-by-step.

    You have shown all of us that we can challenge ourselves to achieve what may seem impossible to others and that although it might not be easy; we can in fact realize our goals through on-going hard work, by persevering, with the help and support of friends that believe in us.

    And, yes--I love your Tiffany bracelet! Awesome job! What a great reminder for you each day that you can achieve your goals--congratulations! - 1/1/2013   11:39:14 AM
  • 107
    Hi Girl,

    I only saw this blog today! I am so proud of you! You rock! And you are looking gorgeous! Actually on days where I can't run due to joint pain, or when I was trying to mentally get used to doing run-walk-run instead of run-run-run I think of you and get motivated!

    Steph - 1/3/2012   1:05:15 PM
  • 106
    Congratulations! And I love to read your blogs - they are so inspiring. :) - 12/29/2011   3:04:08 PM
  • 105
    How awesome are you!!!!! :-) - 11/19/2011   2:12:21 PM
  • 104
    You are amazing...you will wear that bracelet and have a reminder of your great efforts every time you wear it...so sweet :) - 11/11/2011   5:04:06 PM
  • 103
    Love your bracelet. I bet it makes you proud all over again every time you look at it. You go, girl!
    Linda - 11/11/2011   4:37:38 PM
  • 102
    This actually left me in tears. I am so happy for you! You are an inspiration to many. Thank you so much for sharing this with us. May God bless you. - 11/9/2011   1:51:00 PM
    Congratulation on exceeding your goal! You definitely leave no room for excuses and that is priceless. I struggled through 11 months of Zumba with pain but so worth it because I am able to do Salsa and other Social Dances. Keep shooting for the moon! - 11/8/2011   10:33:53 PM
  • 100
    congrats!!!!!! you are an inspiration. - 11/8/2011   2:17:44 PM
  • HUP2345
    Just when I was getting down about the chronic pain I have, not to mention the gloomy weather, I came across your story. WOW!!!! You won't even believe how inspiration you have given to me in just one short little story! I thought about a 5K but figured "nawww...", now I now I can do a 5K! In fact, I think I'm going to start training tonite!!!! THANK YOU FOR SHARING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    !!!! - 11/8/2011   11:25:44 AM
  • 98
    You are an inspiration to many!
    Congrats Beth! - 11/8/2011   9:40:18 AM
  • 97
    You inspire me and others! Keep up all of your hard work! - 11/7/2011   7:05:18 PM
    congrats!!! You are very inspiring!!!! - 11/7/2011   6:54:18 PM
  • 95
    You rock! I am so amazed by your perseverance and motivation, way to go! :') - 11/7/2011   4:08:51 PM
  • 94
    Thank you soooo much for sharing honest details about your journey! I too have dealt with chronic pain at varying degrees in the last 15 years, and am training for my first 5k also. =)

    Because at one time the pain was so debilitating and chronic, and doctors gave me no hope of ever overcoming it, I got into a stage of fearing the pain. By the grace of God, I believe I've been able to surpass all that my doctors told me was possible. I say by the grace of God because I tried avoiding ANYTHING that increased my pain- even for a day- even if it would have been useful for recovery or therapeutic. The first time I tried walking a mile, my hip flexors seized and my poor husband had to go back to get the car and come pick my up. I didn't want to try that again for close to a year! I was so determined to avoid the pain.

    The reason I mention all of this is because your story is so encouraging because you continued on toward your goal regardless of the pain. There is so much hope in your story for folks like us that have dealt with chronic pain.

    So, thanks again for sharing the struggle during your journey and not just the beginning and end results.

    Your are an inspiration! - 11/7/2011   3:00:01 PM
  • 93
    Way to go, Beth! You really deserve that beautiful bracelet! You are a true inspiration to all! - 11/7/2011   2:09:46 PM
  • 92
    Wonderful story . you are an inspiration for me too. - 11/7/2011   10:29:10 AM
  • LADY114
    Way to go!!!! I'm so happy for you that you were able to achieve your goal! Keep up the great work, you are an inspiration to all of us!! - 11/7/2011   8:39:25 AM
  • 90
    Congratulations!! You are such an amazing inspiration! : ) - 11/7/2011   12:42:23 AM
    WOW! - 11/6/2011   7:18:42 PM
  • TARAE98
    you are an inspiration! - 11/6/2011   3:19:01 PM
  • 87
    Terrific! and Job Well Done! You set a goal, made a plan to achieve it and then did it!
    Nice bracelet. Keep up the great work! - 11/6/2011   3:05:37 PM
  • 86
    AWESOME...I know absolutely that you are Enjoying The Journey!!! Nice bracelet too! :-)) - 11/6/2011   1:06:27 PM
  • 85
    WOW! What a story of persistence and dedication. Enjoy your bracelet!!! - 11/6/2011   12:00:56 PM
    What a wonderful, inspirational journey. Thank you so much for sharing - and congratulations on your beautiful bracelet. - 11/6/2011   11:44:15 AM
  • 83
    I am soo proud of you!!!!! Pushing through pain is no easy thing!!! You have accomplished a great thing and I am so glad you have a wonderful support group! Much love - 11/6/2011   11:29:08 AM
  • 82
    Nice Job Mrs 5K.............Good 4 U............ My goal is to walk or run a 1/2 marathon with me, Jesus and my arthritis. - 11/6/2011   11:26:22 AM
    You are so fabulous!!! - 11/6/2011   1:41:32 AM
    I look forward to your blogs!! Awesome !! Congratulations on your 5k!!! Hugs!
    You are an inspiration to me! Love your bracelet!! Well deserved!!! - 11/6/2011   12:41:37 AM
  • 79
    You are amazing! Congratulations on defying the odds!

    Thanks for sharing - Now there's no room left for whiners!!! - 11/6/2011   12:39:03 AM

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