Sometimes I wish that I could think about NOTHING during my runs. I do not want to think about my day, the weekend or have random thoughts pop into my head about what I need to do, what I forgot to do or what I should write about next.
But then you have a run where you have all of these running realizations that turn into a post you want to share which is exactly what happened last Thursday so here we are today.
Running realizations…let’s discuss!
According to my training plan, the workout for Thursday was a one mile warm up followed by two x 3 miles at goal half marathon pace with 5 minutes recovery in between plus cool down.
Running Realization #1: I now prefer a two mile warm up over a one mile warm up.
When I asked Laura why this run had only a one mile warm up, she told me that I could absolutely add in the extra warm up mile if I wanted it, she only cut it to the one mile warm up for the workout to save me time.
I know I have said this before but I will say it again — I used to start my runs, especially races, way too fast, giving all that I had at the start,only to burn out later. Over the years and especially now, I have come to love not only easing into a run and finishing stronger but to embrace the warm up miles! Not just one mile, but two miles seems to be my favorite way to start a run.
I was tired during the warm up miles, by the way. I wasn’t sure if running the 10k race only days earlier combined with the cumulative effect of half marathon training was starting to set in and I even questioned how I was going to jump from the warm up pace to half marathon pace. But I did it!
Running Realization #2: Total distance of a workout is completely lost on me now.
If you run a lot like I do, I bet you can agree with me when I say that total distance of a workout is often not realized. When you add up the warm up miles, working miles and then cool down miles, suddenly you find yourself with a total of a lot of miles which you didn’t even realize until they were over!
We runners do not see total distance anymore like regular people see distance. Regular people see a 10 mile run as OMG a TEN MILE run. Not us.
We see 10 miles as, Okay so I will warm up a for a mile or two or three and then run some tempo stuff then cool down. And hey, if my endorphins are flowing and I have some time and the sun is shining, I will keep going until my GPS dies or I have to go to the bathroom.
I don’t even know what the total distance of this workout was supposed to be (it would vary depending on how fast or slow I ran the intervals) but it became 10 miles before I even knew it.
Running Realization #3: I am so capable.
Capable has become a word I hear in my head during this half marathon training cycle. I am more than capable of these workouts which makes me proud of myself. And, saying the word capable and seeing C-A-P-A-B-L-E in my head as I run the fast paces makes me feel even more capable.
I knew during the warm up miles that even though I felt fatigued, the later miles would feel the best. Try telling that to someone who doesn’t run. Us runners understand that it often takes a bunch of miles to find our groove but regular, non-running people? They think we are nuts when we say we ran a few miles before a race to warm up or we ran 10 miles, feeling our best after mile six.
Running Realization #4: What used to feel fast is now considered easy.
The more we run, the more efficient we become. What used to be a fast pace for me is now my easy range. Sometimes I can’t even believe that.
Running Realization #5: You can be tired yet still feel strong.
During the second set of half marathon paced miles of this particular run, I kept thinking to myself, I am getting tired yet I still feel so strong.
I can continue this pace right now even though I am tired.
There’s such a thing as tired yet strong.
I want to remember this during the last half of the race in a few weeks. Acknowledging your fatigue but recognizing that even through the tired feeling, you can still feel your strength which can help keep you moving along.
Running Realization #6: Every runner has a story.
And I sometimes forget my own.
My friend’s daughter asked me the other day, almost as more of an assumption looking for confirmation from me, if I ran track in high school.
No sweetie, I absolutely did not. In 9th grade, the wheel chair was summoned from the nurse’s office to come get me after I fainted (and then threw up) because I was forced to run one mile during gym class.
Every time I tell this story, we laugh until I have tears in my eyes.
Me? Fainting and throwing up from running ONE MILE?!
Yes. It really happened. If my younger self knew that she would one day become a runner, she would probably laugh and then faint again.
I sometimes forget about the runner that I wasn’t but it’s so important to remember where you came from, how you started and where you are now.
Posts of Interest:
How To Start Running – Told more like how I start running to help you start running.
Running Helps Me Think – A good round up of posts that I thought of while running.Running Realizations #running #halfmarathon #halfmarathontraining #fitfluential Click To Tweet
Does your mind think too much when you run?
How old were you when you started running?
Any running realizations to share with me?