First step to running was 'jolking'

Last updated 08:00 27/01/2014

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From couch potato to running bean

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Never in my 35 years did I have any interest in running - or even exercise really.

I had always been lucky enough to be able to eat and drink whatever I liked ... until I had my little girl.

Last year I decided to make an attempt at running.

I didn't know how to start and had people suggest I walk for a set distance, say between two power poles, then run the same.

My problem was I would decide that I couldn't make it that far. So I tried and gave up on running a few times.

Then a friend gave me her old iPod and I loaded up some songs that I knew would keep me amped up and tried again. I discovered two things.

1. I was trying to do too much. I had never run in my life so why did I expect to be able to run at any speed straight away?

2. Music was the key for me.

My solution to discovery number one was "jolking".

This what I've called a mix of jogging and walking. I realised I couldn't run. I could jog. Slowly. But I was still moving.

I alternated jogging with walking - at the start there was really no difference in the ground I covered doing either.

This was where discovery number two came in.

I set myself a new challenge - walk one song, jog one song.

The way it worked for me was that when I started to decide I couldn't jog further, I just thought "surely the song will finish soon".

A minute later I would still be thinking that but I would also still be jogging.

Once I got a handle on that I set myself a couple more challenges to push myself harder: I had a rule that if I was jogging when a song started then I had to keep going until the end of that song; I also now have a "do not walk" song and no matter when that comes on when I'm out "jolking" I cannot walk while it's playing.

I am now able to jog (almost to the point of running) a 2 kilometre circuit with no walking which will be increased to 3km next week, then to 4km once I can do the 3km, and so on.

My goal is to do a 5km fun run.

The trick is discover what works for you. It may take trying a few different things and end up being completely different to what works for everyone else, but if it works, then it works. 

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