Runner Spotlight: Lily Calzada

Lily Calzada
Northwest Campus Coordinator of Special Services Lily Calzada.

With registration for the Toro Dash nearing the deadline (remember to sign up online by Nov. 1!), we want to take a moment each week to highlight stories of how TCC staff members began their running careers.  This week’s Buzz features Northwest Campus’s Coordinator of Special Services Lily Calzada.  Go Lily!

What was your motivation for starting a walking/running program?

My ten year old daughter ran the Cowtown 5K Children’s Marathon in February of 2012.  I wanted to join her but thought I was too old to begin running.  Then, my dear friend, Rosemarie Hammon, started a running program.  I was inspired by her to begin running so that I could then run with my daughter.  Since I started running, I have done two 5Ks with my daughter.

How did you get started?

I did the first 5K as a baseline; I ran as much as I could, then walked the rest of the way.  Then my training consisted of running for five minutes, walking for five minutes, running for five minutes, walking for five minutes, etc. until I finished 5K.  I did this three times a week for about a month, then increased my minutes of running and decreased my minutes of walking a little bit each time.  Now I am able to run four miles without stopping!

How has your life improved as a result of your walking/running?

I have much more energy now.  Before, I used to be tired all the time, but now I wake up energized and stay that way all day. I rest better at night.  Overall, I am in a better mood!

What advice would you have for others interested in starting a walking/running program?

Being in my late forties, if I can do it, anyone can do it.  Just start a little bit at a time: run one minute, walk one minute, increasing the running time in between the minutes.  Do this slowly and only about three times a week.  Your body needs to rest, too.  Give yourself time to reach the goal.  Don’t expect to be running marathons in one month!  It takes a good three months to train for a 5K.  But, start today, just for thirty minutes.  You have to make it a part of your routine.  I run on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.  I try really hard to keep to this routine.  It’s only three days a week!