Wells is 14 weeks old (on Friday when I started this post)!
Happy New Year! I’ve seen lots of bloggers posting about resolutions and/or goals. About half of them want to improve their fitness and chase some PRs. The other half want to take things easy, enjoy their exercise and not stress about distances or times. I enjoy reading both angles because I’ve been in each situation myself. After running competitively from junior high through college, I needed a break badly. I took a nice long break. I came back years later, fired up to do something great (after having Currie). I had a few years of running faster than I ever had, until I got pregnant with Wells, and got a much deserved and appreciated down year. But now I’m back and ready to turn things around again.
This got me thinking of my own running goals. It’s no secret that I want to qualify for the Olympic Trials Marathon in 2016. I also want to PR in every distance from mile through marathon in the next 2 years, if not by year-end 2014.
When I think about what I want out of my running, I consider all the things I’ll have to give up to get there. I hear runners of all levels talk of sacrifices they make to reach their running goals and I totally get it. Early bedtime means sometimes missing social gatherings. Spending hours of the weekend at races and/or getting in the long runs takes huge chunks out of our free time. Cutting back on indulgences here and there (foods that don’t sit well with running, alcohol, etc) can be challenging. This list goes on and on. But here’s what I think: everything I give up, is something I want to give up. It doesn’t feel so much like a sacrifice.
Even during my highest mileage weeks, I never feel horrible or like I don’t want to do a run. Even when I’m scared out of my mind the days leading up to the race, I have to admit I love that rush. Even when I have to give up my beloved dairy foods a few days before a long race, I know it’s something I should be doing anyway. (In fact, I’m not eating any dairy right now since it doesn’t sit well with baby Wells.)
I want to reach my goals. I believe I will reach my goals. But even if I don’t, I won’t regret the process. I won’t regret trying. I won’t regret living this lifestyle. This is something I’m doing for me. No one else. And it’s a lot of fun that way.
So with all that being said, I had another week in the right direction. A New Years Day 3 mile tempo run on the trails of Schenley Park. Some snowy runs. A meetup and run with Kristy and Mark. My longest run in over a year, 15.2 miles with Jeff. And 53 miles on the week. Another week in the right direction!
It hasn’t all been easy. Running long is really hard for me right now. I just spent the last year running mostly 2-4 miles a day with the occasional longer run thrown in there when I had company of run-friends. My pregnancy was spent staying healthy and exercising daily, but not logging many miles. Now I’m starting from scratch with the long runs and they are all really painful and much slower than I’d like. I am proud of myself for keeping level-headed about it and knowing the fitness is building and it’ll all be much easier in the coming months. Looking forward to easier-feeling, and faster long runs of the future is what encourages me to add the extra mile each week!
Here are the 14 week postpartum pics! Had to change location this week as my normal picture spot (Wells’ bedroom) was occupied.
Questions for you!
How do you stay motivated when long runs feel REALLY hard?
Did you make some resolutions or goals this year? Are they more relaxed or are you chasing some big personal bests?