Good morning! I’m nestled in bed drinking my Bigelow’s Vanilla Caramel tea trying to warm up from the inside out after my first run since the half! I know it seems I’ve been making a big deal about this first post-race run – let me try to explain it to you (if you’ve trained for a big event you may already get it). Since August, most of my life revolved around my training runs. Cross training, strength training and rest days had to be planned around the speed work and tempo runs. Mondays, Wednesdays and one weekend day had to include a run. The running part was no big deal for me, I like it. It’s the fact that during training there’s a little constraint on when and how far you go. Sure, sometimes I would skip a speed workout in favor of a long, steady run or devote all of October to slowing down the pace but those decisions were not without a little guilt for deviating from the schedule.
The other thing about it is the big buildup to race day. All this training and focus has gone into this one race. I raced, I reached my goal – now what? It was nice for a few days to feel like I didn’t have to run at all – but it’s also a little hard to get used to just going for a run for the sake of the run…..I knew with enough time my desire to run would come back so I decided not to force it and truly wait until I was ready.
How do you know you’re ready? When your friends are gearing up for a night on the town and you want to crawl in bed so you’re rested the next morning. When it’s 28 degrees outside and instead of rolling over for more sleep you pull out your winter gear and layer up. When you grab a banana on your way out the door instead of Christmas cookies. When your partner says “Do you want to skip?” and you can’t find a reason why you should. Those were my reasons anyway.
I met Elizabeth at her house and we set off with our four-legged companion Hazel. We didn’t have a specific distance in mind so we just started running until finally I said “at least 4!” We chatted about Christmas shopping and travel plans, work and parties, complained a little about the cold and whined at how achy our joints were. With all this chatter, I tricked her into going 5 miles and it felt wonderful! My legs loved the extra bloodflow, my lungs the fresh, crisp oxygen and my spirit the freedom of the run. I’m glad to be running again!
It’s the last Saturday to shop!! I have some errands to run and the gym holiday party tonight! Have you finished all your shopping yet?