Hello everybody. I am finally recovered from one of the worst colds to date. As I pull myself out of the creeping crud, I need to recommit myself to my running as the last two weeks have been brutal, with little running. Last week I ran 9 miles total and this week I ran 2 miles.
The 2 miles were squeezed in because I refused to end this week with no miles. Risking the possibility of sounding like I am making excuses, I am way over-committed. I am the parent of a 7 year old, work a full time job, work a weekend job and recently joined the Board of a local non-profit, where I volunteered to take over their social media presence. (I may be hitting up my fellow running blogger and social media guru, Vanessa Junkin from She Runs by the Seashore, for some social tips! Tip #1 – shamelessly plug fellow bloggers with larger audiences.)
Nonetheless, I am slowly making gains and worry that I will backslide. Also, I have a half marathon looming and 2 miles a week is definitely not going to cut it! Between missing last week’s blog and my poor mile performance, I decided I would pick the topic of motivation and procrastination – my Achilles heels, when my actual heels are not hurting…
Last Friday, a coworker came to my office to talk to me about running. We will call her Marcy. Marcy was an avid runner and enjoyed 5Ks. She wanted to run longer distances, but quickly became breathless after the 5K mark. Knowing that she would soon become breathless, Marcy stopped attempting longer distances and felt that the half or full marathon were completely impossible distances. Life soon happened for Marcy and she stopped running. Marcy talked about running like a true lover of the sport. But the longer she didn’t run, the longer Marcy felt she could not return to running. Finally, Marcy said that she had a secret – she actually hated the running itself, but love, love, LOVED the feeling she had after she ran.
Marcy is my running soul sister. I think she summed up the entire struggle for me. I want to run, I love running – but man is it hard now. I sermonized all of the running slogans – the hardest part is lacing up, the battle is to get out the door, break the goals into little doable morsels. But i have a secret too – I also hate running – when I am running – for at least the first mile, maybe the first two… but then my body relaxes, finds itself and begins to let go. I know this. I know that getting out the door is the hardest part of the challenge for me.
I have a case of broken expectations. I want to run a 6 minute mile a la gazelle style…unfortunately, I run a 13 minute mile similar to an angry elephant – I run heavy and off cadence and I struggle for my miles right now.
The worst part of my day is the period of time I spend debating if I will run, beating myself up for not running, wanting to run, wanting to sleep, allowing myself to become overwhelmed with life’s many, many other tasks waiting for me.
But the best part of my day starts half way through my run…realizing I am doing it, feeling the sweat and effort, telling myself that I am halfway there…and then it get’s even sweeter, stretching afterwards, feeling the gains – those sweet aches telling me that my body is changing, somehow, someway, I will not be the same as when I started the run. I am happier, lighter – I am nicer. Seriously, my partner has asked me to go run before because he is not enjoying the non-running me.
So let’s get into the nitty gritty, the goals and the motivations. I really want to be a morning runner. At the end of the day, after work, as my daughter hangs on me and the ingredients for dinner refuse to cook themselves…the run seems impossible. When I run first thing in the morning, I float the rest of the day. But when that alarm goes off at 5 AM, all morning goals fly out the window…
Therefore, I am going to set three goals for the next three weeks. I would like to promise that I will accomplish all three this week, but I try not to outright lie… One morning, I will wake up early to practice my yoga as the sun rises. One morning, I will wake up early to go to spin class at my local gym. One morning, I will wake up early to run before I start my day.