For most of the last 16 years, I have been either a trainee or a group leader for a training program for walkers and runners. My primary focus has been for walkers. I started out as a runner trainee, then switched to a trainer, and when they started the walking groups, I jumped ship to walking instead of running.
Back in high school, I ran cross-country. I wasn’t the fastest, but I did enjoy it. Well, most of the time. I remember doing sand hills up from the Flint River. We ran down to the bottom of the hill and our cross-country coach yelled down for us to run up and he timed us. We sprinted up the sandy hill as fast as we could. He told us, “Great job! Now go back down and come back up even faster.” We were less than thrilled.
My other fond memory of running cross-country was when we were late getting to a meet at a neighboring school and we did not get a chance to go out on the course ahead of time. So, the first time out on the course was during the race. Oh yeah, the course was out in a field where only the race route was mowed and the grass was at least waist high. Within the first mile, I caught my foot in a hole in the route. My knees went in a different direction than what I did and I fell to the ground. At this point, though I had no choice other than to get up and continue on with the race. My knees were so painful, but I kept going. I managed to finish, but it was not a pretty sight. I immediately fell down after the finish line and needed assistance getting to the bus. It wasn’t all bad. Two football players carried me to the bus. That part did bring a smile to my face. After that point, I had trouble with my knees.
Fast forward to signing up as a running trainee, 13 years and two kids later. Luckily, the training program I signed up for had a combination of running and walking. During the training program, I participated in many local 5K races as a runner. I met a lot of friends at the races and some of them asked me to try racewalking. I went to a racewalk training class and loved it. Thankfully the training program that I participated with as a runner added walking and I switched over. I never changed back from walking to running. My knees have cooperated with me ever since.
Through the years of walking, I have read many books on walking and they have not been written by walkers, but by runners that decided to capitalize on the walkers. One that comes to mind was actually a good book and I enjoyed it, up until the last chapter. It was a good thing that I was flying when I got to the last chapter though. I was ready to chuck it out a window. It said that now that you have walked, you can now replace your walking with running.
During these years of being a walking group leader, I have had less than a hand full of people that have switched from walking to running. I have had runners that moved to walking and people that only trained as a walker. So, I found these books very discouraging.
Also, during these years, I have found walkers asking the same questions year after year.
- What do I wear?
- What do I eat?
- What do I drink?
- How do I pick out a pair of shoes?
- What do I bring when walking?
- Which watch should I get?
It did not seem to matter which group it was, the 10-mile groups or the half marathon groups, the questions were all the same. It got me thinking about what I could do to help my walkers even more than I was. I could write a book. However, I don’t want my book to be just like every other training book out there on the market. Why would anyone buy it?
Further back into middle school, I enjoyed reading books and writing. I have dabbled in writing throughout the years. Then when I got into the working world, my creative writing got pushed aside and I delved into the world of PowerPoint. I can make your PowerPoint presentation sing, dance and do cartwheels. However, that does not make for a great book to read.
More recently I have been doing a bit of traveling and have written quite a few reviews on places to where I have traveled, stayed and eaten. This has helped me with my creative writing and getting me out of the bullet points of PowerPoint.
I want to make a training book that is different and interesting but also help people. What can I do? I know! How about a fictional story that has a training schedule to go along with it? Ok, let’s expand on that. What’s the fictional story? How about taking parts of my training career and personal life? That’s it! A fictional story about a divorced mother of twin boys that is training for her first 5K walk. I can then expand it to a 10K, a half marathon and then a marathon. I can create a seminar to go along with it to help people start their own training programs throughout the United States. I can assist small groups, medium groups, and large groups.
This will take my PowerPoint skills, walking skills, writing skills and people skills and combine them all together. Bonus, travel across the United States helping people. What a great career. I have created my own career.
Do you want to walk a 5K? I can help you. How about a 10K? I can help you with that too. You have seen those 13.1 stickers on cars and would love to try it. I can help you with that. It doesn’t matter the distance. I can customize a program.
The book will be coming out soon, get a copy and let me help you achieve your walking goals.