I’ve been back running about 3 months now, since my break to kickstart my recovery from overtraining. I’ve been taking it one day at a time and just keeping an open mind about things. My main goal is to continue to fit running into my life rather than revolving my life around it and I have to pat myself on the back here, because I’ve succeeded so far.
I think sometimes we type-A people get so obsessed with achieving a goal, that we forget that there’s more to life than just that. I’m realizing now how running affected my decision-making to the extent it dictated my relationships with people, my pursuit of other interests and my mental and physical health. I wouldn’t say I was addicted like a heroine addict is addicted, but there are some similarities for sure. I was blind to so many ways that my drive to achieve running success was harming me or preventing me from fully living my life. I think you kind of have to be like that to achieve the level of success I was striving for and that can be fine for some people or for others at certain stages of their life, but it isn’t ok for me, especially not now.
The point is that with this more balanced approach, running is accenting my life and I’m feeling more content and more deeply happy than I’ve been in a long time. I’m pursuing other goals and so much more capable of dealing with the rest of my life. It’s really good and I’m happy, which I fully realized after I raced a 5k last weekend.
Ok. I’m not going to lie. I did not want to race a 5k last weekend! I’ve hardly done more than jog these last three months and I know myself and I know I couldn’t come close to the 19:17 I ran at this race last year, which at that time felt kinda sucky even after struggling with low iron for three months leading up to it. I only even considered racing last week because I signed up for the stupid thing months ago. But I sucked it up and made myself go with the single goal to have fun. And I did! I even ran about the exact time I expected I would, got out-kicked down the homestretch (again) and still had fun! I made a new friend (the woman who out-kicked me), caught up with old ones and hung out with others. It was really really fun!
Even the racing part. I felt pretty good and enjoyed pushing myself. I had no gears to use really. I could talk, but I just couldn’t run faster. I felt fired up after the race and considered training for a later 5k, because if I just wake up my fast-twitch fibers and work on all my different gears, I think I could flirt with a sub-19 before the end of the year.
I slept on that idea and thought about it, but I don’t think I’m ready yet to commit to any kind of training plan. I’m happy with where I am, but I do know and can feel in my bones, that I will some day train and compete seriously again.
Week ending 9/6
Gunning for my 50 mile week! But feel short.
Tue: 8 easy
Wed: 8 easy with the stroller on trails with James.
Thu: 8 easy with the stroller and Margaret!
Fri: 5.5 with Julie. Felt sick!
Sat: Off. There goes the 50 mile week. Sick.
Sun: 13 on the trails with Jasmine, Mina and Marisa. Feeling better.
Week ending 9/13
Mon: 7.5 easy from home.
Tue: 8 to a park with a 1.3-1.7 mile loops (I think). Did one long loop easy, then 1 loop with 1:00/1:00 hard/easy and then one loop easy before heading back.
Wed: off – long story, but zero time to run!
Thu: off – no time!
Fri: Exhausted! But crammed in 6 on the treadmill because I couldn’t stand another day off of running. I haven’t run on the treadmill since February. Ouch.
Sat: 7 easy
Sun: 9 with 5k in 20:39.
Week ending 9/20
Tue: 8 miles with Julie.
Wed: 8 miles with sick 2 year old in the stroller.
Thu: 6 miles with the stroller again.
Fri: 8 miles with 10 x 1:00/1:00 (longer break in the middle) and then 4 x 15-20s HARD! Felt good to move!
Sat: 6 easy
Sun: 14 with first 10 mostly on trails with Jasmine and last 4 solo on the paved path. Felt good, had fun and miles, even the solo ones flew by. Longest run since May!
Total: … 50! Finally!