TRIAL AND ERROR // 6 STRONG MILES
If I’ve learned anything about progress when it comes to running and working out, it’s that there really is no one size fits all approach.
It’s all trial and error, with a whole lot of 1 step forward 2 steps back thrown in. What really works one day to get you that super fast time or focused+intense lifting session won’t necessarily work the next day. What’s more, it is completely unrealistic to expect that your body and mind will be able to perform at 100% all of the time. Which, when you really think about how much stress and strain you put your body through over the course of just one week, sorta makes sense. However, at the same time, (when your main goal is to get stronger and faster) it can be discouraging when your progress isn’t quite as linear as you expect it to be.
Take this first week back to running+working out post shopping trip as an example. Monday and Tuesday’s run were far slower than my normal 5 and 3 milers have been lately. I even made the mistake of pushing myself way too far weight and rep wise during Tuesday’s leg day (my first leg day in a week). For me, after having two disappointing runs in a row, absolutely destroying my legs seemed like the perfect solution. It wasn’t until I woke up at 4:15 am yesterday that I realized just how terrible of a solution that was.
So, clearly I’ve got this whole error/mistake/steps backward thing down to a T.
Still, my pelvic pain was bad enough yesterday morning to force me to skip the gym, my incline walking, and running completely. There was just no way I was going to be able to do all of those things, when I was in such a huge amount of pain just laying in bed not moving a muscle. But, I still wanted to get in some type of exercise since I had only planned on getting in one rest day this week. By yesterday afternoon, I was feeling good enough to walk on my treadmill at home, and also test out my new running/working out playlist.
I seriously think I have created the greatest and most motivational playlist possible. With a mix of Cardi B, Ariana Grande, and Devon Dawson; I was able to walk on the treadmill for over 90 minutes!!! I got in 5.3 miles and felt absolutely fantastic compared to how I felt just a mere 12 hours earlier. All I could think about afterwards, was just how fun and fast today’s run was going to be. I mean, how can you not push the pace and feel super empowered listening to songs like “thank u next” and “Get up 10”?!?
Today’s 6 mile run was incredibly chilly, and a whole lot of fun.
I’m legit not even kidding. Which, for anyone out there who hates running (but still enjoys reading the random ramblings that are this running blog), that sounds insane…especially considering just how dang cold out it is right now in Iowa, at 5:20 a.m. What was so strange about today’s run, was that the cold, snot flying everywhere, and my glasses fogging over within the first 2 miles…didn’t even phase me. I never once got annoyed or wished that I could go back to the hot, humid mess that summer running entails. Nope, not even for a second. I was way too busy listening to my tunes, and continually tell myself that I could go just a little bit faster for just a little bit longer.
When it came time to make the choice of going for lap number 2 or heading towards Main Street (and the yucky min hill), I didn’t even hesitate to take that second lap. Yeah I was tired and breathing pretty heavy, but I was so in the zone that I couldn’t possibly think about just running 4 or 5 miles. Which, is pretty incredible considering I started out way too fast with a mile 1 time of 9:05. As I went through that second lap, I still had plenty of energy, motivation, and positive vibes going on. Both of my mile 2 and 3 times were in the low 9:20s, so clearly taking yesterday off had made a huge difference!
I swear, if it weren’t for that damn mini hill, I would be hitting PR’s for at least one distance every freaking week. I HATE THE MINI HILL.
First of all, there are just way too many cars driving by and watching you slowly, slowly trek up this not even that long of a hill. And all you can think about is how fast you’re not moving and that all of these people probably think you don’t even know how to run and are for sure not a “real” runner. Then, it gets worse because there isn’t a train and you can’t stop at the top of the hill no matter how bad you really want to/need to. Time slows down, and it feels like about a century has passed before you even get to the flat part of Main Street where you’re supposed to be taking off and making up for lost time.
The rest of the run went by relatively quickly. I somehow managed to eek out a 9:29 for my final mile, which is pretty great considering I had to run down the twisty trail and the roads down in that area are not good…at all. And, *drum roll* I wasn’t in any super intense/debilitating pain post run during my incline walking either. Plus, I was way, WAY more focused on my 90 minutes of lifting today thanks to this new playlist. Oh, and I even managed to run my 6.01 miles today at an average pace of 9:29. So, for once this week, I am NOT taking the L on this run and workout. Hallelujah.