Once again it has been awhile since I blogged. I once thought I needed to run faster or farther to really fit in with this elite group of runners I have found myself associated with. The pressure is everywhere, "What's your PR for the course?" "Did you do well?" "What's your farthest run/race?" There are articles and books galore telling us how to run faster and farther and what to eat to perform at our best. I found myself caught up in this and was really striving to run farther and faster and then I realized, I wasn't enjoying the run anymore. It felt like work and constant pressure to always do better.
I don't run to win or break any records. I turn to running for relaxation and enjoyment, not for more competition in an ever competing world. Right now I am training for a 1/2 marathon in October. I originally signed up for the 50K thinking that the commitment would make me train for it. I only found pressure and stress to find the time to run and to run fast. I run to excape the stresses and pressure of my daily life. So I backed off and decided to run the 1/2 marathon, which will be my 3rd. I don't feel like I ran my first 2 that well so my goal is to keep running the shorter distances until I am comfortable with those and then we'll see what's next. I may run my first trail marathon in April if things go well.
I do love trail running and don't think I will find myself running too many races on pavement but I never say never. I am focused on enjoying my running and if that means I run slow, well then so be it. I think I suffer fewer injuries when I go slow and enjoy it. However, I will say that after an invigorating run when I push myself to greater distances or speeds, I feel pretty awesome. So here is my take, I will stick to my plan of running with cross training and when I feel good, I will go with it and when I feel bad, I will back off. Sometimes during a run I just don't ever get into it, but I know it is important to finish that run, so I do. Sometimes I get into a run and like something wierd and crazy and unexplainable just gets into me and I go. I still don't blow anybody away or anything, but there's just a purely invigorating sense that builds inside. Ah yes, the runner's high. And as all runners know, "If you gotta ask why I run, you won't get it anyway."