Good Afternoon Fellow New Runners!
For the past few weeks, I haven’t been enjoying my runs. At first my concern was that I was experiencing burn out. The timing would not have been worse as I have two races coming up in February and want to put my best foot forward. Plus I want to get as much running in now as the summer in Florida can be very trying on a runner’s resolve. I tried taking a day off, but that didn’t really help.
Then I figured out the real reason for my “runners non-high”. Recently I have been solely focused on improving my speed. Even on my long runs, I strive for a specific pace. While it is great to have goals, my “need for speed” was killing my joy. So today I decided to just run. I wore my Garmin, but was determined not to worry about the pace time. At first it was hard, I was so tempted to keep checking my Garmin for my speed! The good thing was it was chilly out and I was so focused on staying warm that I didn’t really have time to worry about my speed. I also saw a friend along my running path and that also took my mind off of my time. Before I knew it, I was a mile into my run. My time was not what I strive for, but you know what? It was OK! I was having so much fun on the run. Listening to music, mentally making a daily to-do list, checking out the gorgeous moon in the sky, I had plenty to focus on other than my time.
All told I did 4 miles and yep, my pace wasn’t were I wanted it to be. But I came back in from that run completely happy and content. The speed will come, it has already improved so much, so long as I continue with my speed work at least one run a week. The other 2-3 weekly runs? I am going to focus on having fun and enjoy myself. I might even try to add more miles during my long runs (an even dozen this weekend perhaps?). I am not going to worry about speed on that non-speed work day! And you know what? If I never get faster, if I can’t add any miles this weekend? I won’t beat myself up about it. I am going to be happy with where I am in my running journey and know that every single run is an improvement over where I was a year ago, a month ago. Every single run is a blessing.
Enjoy the Run!
P.S. Have you had times where running wasn’t so fun? How did you get out of your rut?