Hello there – we’re just about half way through the week, which is always an accomplishment, right?
My head is in a running mentality lately. Distances are slowly ramping up in marathon training, and I’m already going through lots of ups and downs, which as runners know, is completely normal (I think?). As I was telling Ed, I feel like I alternate between feeling really really good on a run and feeling dead and beyond exhausted.
I’ve become somewhat discouraged about my pace more often in the last few weeks – even if I’m running and feeling good, I’ll look at my pace and see that it’s much slower than my goal race pace. Though I’m still months out and the focus right now is on building mileage, it can still be disheartening to think I have run much quicker in the past. I know our workout intensity is largely affected by the heat as Suz discussed in this post, so I am conscious that the weather is probably playing a role as well. This infograph was pretty eye opening!
Besides unbearable temperatures…
Thinking about some of my more recent runs got me off on thought tangents in that we all have moments of greatness where we may feel invincible on our runs. At the same time, there are going to be not-so-good runs too. It’s just part of the deal – not every run will be one where you’re feeling 100%.
I think it’s normal to have more clarity and better recollections of the good and bad runs. Those are what we tend to remember, right? But still, day in and day out, we continue to run. Running is always there. Not every run will be memorable – in fact, most of them won’t. Your body goes through it time and time again, and it just becomes second nature. It becomes part of us.
I find that races are often more memorable because you have a goal you work towards, a time you’re trying to make or beat, and you often remember the whole day as an experience since it’s planned out so intricately. You wake up at a certain time, you already know what you’re going to eat, what you’re going to wear, what time you’ll arrive at the race, where you’ll park, where you’ll stretch and warm up, and whatnot.
However, aside from races, there are some normal every day runs that I find memorable for other reasons.
These are the runs that are most memorable to me. The ones I can look back and remember how I was feeling at the time, for better or for worse.
If I’ve had a few bad runs in a row, I try to remember back to what made prior runs so great. Running with Ed is rare, but when we do run together, he inspires me in running and in life. He is so uplifting and positive – it’s no wonder he was a Division 1 college coach for 10 years. I become so motivated after chatting with him, and sometimes just changing that mentality is all I need. Running is very mental so sometimes, I just need to a) stop feeling sorry for myself, b) stop making excuses or c) just accept that I’m having an off day.
You may not know this about me, but I love running at night. I think it’s similar to those who love early morning runs – the streets are bare, people are either asleep or just inside, there’s minimal outside noise and banter. I’m alone with my thoughts, my podcasts, my music, what have you. I’m better able to focus on my running form, my breath, and just putting one step ahead of the other. This is enjoyable to me.
Thirdly, I love running with a clear mind – where I embrace the thoughts that enter, but don’t let them bother or affect me. At the same point, life is life and we can’t always run with a clear mind. Emotions are completely normal.
Have you ever turned to running when you’re frustrated? Or happy? Or stressed? Confused? Just Blah?
Emotions have totally transformed some of my runs, and if I’m being honest, gotten me through some runs I may not have gotten through otherwise. If I’m pumped up, excited, stressed or frustrated, I can take it out on my run. This built up energy may fire me through a tough workout, or I may use that time to “cool down,” gather my thoughts and come back to a problem or situation that is bothering me.
Running is there through all of the ups and downs, trials and tribulations, and good and bad times in life. Even if we don’t remember every run, it’s a sport we owe respect to for helping us be who we are.
[Tweet “Despite ups and downs, trials and tribulations, good times and bad times, #running is there. #runchat”]
You tell me:
Have you been discouraged about pace during your training?
What are some of your more memorable runs?