Running and Resting

Running and Resting

This week I started my new part-time job and my internship.  My week started with some car troubles due to bitter cold temperatures but improved as the week progressed.  I took two consecutive days off from running and only was able to reach a 19.5 mile week (and over half of these miles were ran on Saturday and Sunday).  This low number frightens me but I need to recognize that this was a crazy, hectic, and exhausting week.  I need to accept the fact that this was a rough week of training.  Between my internship and new job I had four consecutive 13 hour days in which I was out of my house from 7:30AM until 8:30PM.  I was eating dinner at 9 o’clock at night and I barely had the energy to even do a 10-minute core workout.  I didn’t run on Monday or Tuesday due to car troubles and my new schedule.  Thursday morning I ran at 6AM.  I was anxious to get to the weekend to log some miles even though a blizzard was about to drop over a foot of snow on my house.

Although I am disappointed I didn’t get to run on Monday or Tuesday I am accepting that these days were rest days.  I know a lot of runners who believe in “run streaks” and training 7 days per week, 365 days per year.  I am not one of these runners.  I know runners who are okay with logging miles on the treadmill. I am not one of these runners either.  I know runners who are ok with trudging through a foot of snow for 12 miles just to get in their modified long run.  I am not one of these runners.

I enjoyed my Saturday and Sunday run even though I was running on a trail with over 12 inches of snow on it.  I got to see beautiful snow-covered trees and picturesque white fields.  I got to spend time outside and got a good workout from adjusting and readjusting my stride with every step.  I love a good challenge and this weekend’s runs definitely worked muscles I never even knew I had.

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Out for a 6.5 mile run in 12+ inches of snow with dad in #blizzard2016

I would like to say I am okay with only logging 19.5 miles this week.  I’m not okay with but I have to accept it.  I can’t reverse time and go back and run 5 miles last Monday.  I must only focus on the present and the future.  It’s okay to take a rest day when your car doesn’t cooperate.  It’s okay to take a rest day if there’s 12 inches of snow on the ground and you can’t get in your scheduled long run. There’s always tomorrow or the next day or the next.  It’s okay to take a rest day and it’s okay to modify whatever training plan you’re following.

After a crazy week of new beginnings, I’ve become more appreciative of every run I am able to go on.  Somedays my schedule literally only allots 30 minutes of running time.  And for those 30 minutes, I appreciate the run.  I’m grateful for those 30 minutes where I can do something I love to do.  It’s okay to take a break from running when life gets too overwhelming.  But next time you get out on the trails or the snow-covered sidewalk, don’t forget to be grateful for the run – every mile is a gift. 

run grateful

Highest Weekly Mileage of 2015!

Highest Weekly Mileage of 2015!

Due to the fact that last week I ran my highest total weekly mileage of 2015, I decided it deserved a blog post! It was an especially special week because this past Wednesday was National Running Day!  I think I celebrated all week though and my mileage showed it!  😀

weekly goalsMy Believe journal (which is, by the way, the best running journal you could ever invest in), held me accountable for my weekly goals.  I was able to run more than 40 miles.  I went hiking this weekend.  And my dad and I tried dehydrated food for the first time to prepare for our hiking trip.

So here’s how the week went:

Monday – 3 miles fast.  My dad and I had to race a thunderstorm – this is a common occurrence for us in the summer.  We were almost 1.5 miles away from home when we heard a (way too close) boom of thunder.

Tuesday – double day!  3 miles with my friend John who was just coming off his 2 weeks of recovery.  Then just a mere 4 hours later I ran another 6.3 miles with my Dad and our ultrarunning friend and it felt easy!  I was very excited that my first double of 2015 seemed easy!

Wednesday – (AKA NATIONAL RUNNING DAY! – make sure you read my blog post about this wonderful day worth celebrating!)….I ran a mile with my mom, another 2 miles with my dad, and then 4 more miles by myself (total of 7 miles).  I decided to change the pace after mile 5 so I picked it up and my 6th mile ended up being a 7:26….it seemed like an appropriate way to celebrate National Running Day!

Thursday – this was my night run of the week which I also blogged about (check it out here!)  My dad and I ran 4 miles with our headlights on and lightning bugs lighting up the trail.

Friday – another double!  I ran 3 miles in the morning with my dog, Gwin.  And then ran another 5.4 miles with my dad later in the day.  I was feeling a little tired but I knew that I would give myself an easy Saturday to adequately recover.

Saturday – I hiked 4 miles in the morning with my mom, dad, and 2 dogs at a state park in DE with loaded backpacks (mine weighed in at 18 lbs) so that my dad and I can get used to wearing a big pack for our hiking trip in July.  Then in the afternoon I ran an easy (and slow) 3 miles.  I was feeling tired.

Sunday – LONG RUN DAY!!!!  (my all time favorite day for training runs as described in yet another previous blog post)…somewhat last minute long run plans with Angela (aka TheRoadLessRun)…we ran 11 miles and averaged 7:52 pace.  Mile 7 was the fastest (at a 7:41 mile split) due to getting a tad bit carried away with our conversation topic.  We’ve decided this is a common issue because whenever we start ranting about something the pace picks up…oops.  Long runs with friends are always so much more enjoyable and more effective for training purposes than if you do them alone – so next time you do a long run, find a buddy!

Total miles = 45.4.  It was a GREAT week of training spent with numerous different runners of all speeds, styles, and goals. But that’s what makes running amazing – no matter how fast or slow, long or short, runners who train together understand each other, and everyone can make one another the best possible runners they can be!

total mileage

For the Love of Long Runs:

For the Love of Long Runs:

Long Runs:

They build strength in your muscles to outlast pain.

They build strength in your heart to endure long durations of stress.

They make you feel stronger than you’ve ever had before.

But they’ll give you more than just physical strength.

They give you a mental boost.

Going on long runs with friends give you over an hour of uninterrupted time together.

No cell phones, just miles.  And miles.

So you start talking.

Sometimes talks transform to rants.

(And your pace may get unintentionally faster)

Sometimes rants transform to your life concerns and worries.

But in those miles you have someone to talk to,

someone to confide in.

Someone that will tell you what you need to hear.

And before you know it, the long run is over.

Your legs feel tired.

You’re ready to chug some Gatorade.

But you’re happy.

You’re stronger.

And you’re grateful for a running buddy.

And that’s what makes you come back for another long run.

Another 10, 11 or 12 miles.

It doesn’t seem so long when you know that the miles that lie ahead of you are full of life, talking, and friendship.