Day 23, was a mental challenge for sure. I spent the morning wondering if I would have to resort to another unconventional run inside my home. As the day went on I grew more uncomfortable with that idea. I received a phone call from a friend who shared the details of her neighborhood walk and how refreshing it was for her. She insisted it was just the thing I needed. Well just like that, I tore away from the TV, layered up with 2 shirts, leggings, joggers, compression socks, hat, gloves and oh yeah, music! Against the advice of my husband I set out in the ice and snow. Fourteen minutes later I was done! Can’t and impossible does not exist in my world! 1.17 miles
I went to bed last night with uncertainty and concern. I was reminded by every news station and forecast that a winter storm was on the horizon and had the potential to disrupt work, travel and just about any of the days plans. Immediately after waking about 6:30am I peered through the blinds and just as I feared, we were getting precipitation. I went back to bed still with the hope that I would at least be able to get in a mile run in the neighborhood as long as I bundled up. After waking to sounds of continuous pebbles hitting the window panes my hopes of an outdoor run was slowly diminishing. However, I wasn’t ready to give up and still had a little glimmer of hope which was quickly dashed by the meteorologist iterations that outside had now become a dangerous place due to ice and the lingering threat of freezing rain later in the day. I just couldn’t believe that my running streak was going to end just like this, abruptly on a random morning after mixed precipitation. I decided it was best to just lie in bed and think about everything that could’ve been accomplished but instead will end right now at this moment. The only problem with this scenario is that I have never been able to accept IMPOSSIBLE so why was I going to do it now and with little examination. The longer I lie in bed the more I began to question how to make this one mile run happen. I knew one option existed but it just seemed too crazy and the least desirable. The sleet is still coming and the streets are getting slicker and slicker. Only one thing left to do. With my digital assistant at hand I am all ready to go, the stairs and my home have now become my training camp. Yep, I became a rat in a maze as I ran for what seemed like eternity around and around and around and up and down and up and down the stairs until… 1.00 miles
I knew today would be fairly easy and a quick day at the gym. My swim coach was absent so I decided this would be the perfect time to get in my short run and still have time to visit an old friend. No strength training today. 10 minutes on the treadmill and I was winning. 1.00miles
This was going to be a long morning at the gym because since I really needed to run a few miles on the treadmill as well as do strength training. I was able to find a treadmill fairly quickly but my music stream just didn’t seem to cooperate. In spite of feeling as though I was somehow being punished by a digital master I seemed to be making it without hesitation through each mile. Yes, today just felt like a good day to switch from my usual hip hop to Gospel, encouragement without condemnation. Yep, just like that I was done. 3.00 miles
Today the morning low was 16 degrees so I guess that means running outside was out of the question. Off to the gym I go!! Not real sure what’s happening this week but once again, all the treadmills are in use!! I can’t believe this. I pondered I if I should wait around for a few minutes for one to become free or go to the indoor track and run the circle for 14 laps just to make a mile. Hmmm. After giving it careful thought, looks like I will run the track. The first four laps were easy to keep track of but after that each lap seem to literally run into the other. By lap 9 I am wondering why didn’t I just wait for a treadmill. Lap ten- I only have 4 laps left to go. Lap 13- I am in the home stretch and just waiting for my digital assistance to confirm that I have indeed ran one mile. Wait, something must be wrong because I just finished lap 14 and my app is indicating that I am only at 0.83 of a mile when the sign on the wall clearly states that 14 laps equals a mile. This seems all wrong but ok, I will continue anyway, in about 2 and half more laps I hear my digital assistant and I am done. 1.04 miles.
Mondays are usually nice and easy but yesterday was a little different. Since it was a holiday and school was out I had a gym partner. I guess we weren’t the only ones deciding to head to the gym since the parking lot was super packed. I couldn’t find a free treadmill so I decided to do my workout in reverse and started with a few weights. Finally, one free treadmill and even though I was not done with my weight training I figured I better stop everything and grab it before it was claimed. Voila, after 11 short minutes I was done with my run. 1.00 mile
Today rain was in the forecast starting pretty early so I had to move quickly. Today was a treat since I had a friend with me and we decided to take a brief run on a much scenic route through the downtown area. It started out just at sunrise and we kept a nice pace and conversation about football and the joys of motherhood. Along the way we remarked how please we were that we would make it before the precipitation. Just a few minutes later I felt a drop on my face. We continued and just as we reached 3 miles I began to feel more drops but they didn’t feel or sound like the usual rain drops. I believe we were running in the mist of sleet. We stopped talking and I could feel my pace picking up as we continue to run in the direction of our vehicles. Again we made it. 3.48 miles.
Back outside again with my running group for a long run. It was cold and dark but I was given life by the smiling faces who decided to brave the cold with me. I knew I could run 5 miles but as I continued to run all I kept thinking is when will I hear my digital assistant check in to give my pace, split time and distance. Finally, I made 5 miles and I sigh but now I know I can make it at least 5 and half miles. Ok, I made it about 5.25 miles and my digital assistant quits. Guess I didn’t recharge it long enough. Now the only way I can make this run is to hold on to my phone and watch every step that is being tracked on my app. Ok, I decided to turn around at 5.80 and just keep running back and forth in the same area until I see the reading that I made 6.00 miles. My legs felt like jelly but it’s done. 6.00 miles.
Wow, I was glad for Friday morning to arrive since it meant I would only do a short run. Although I initially planned to just hop on the treadmill for a quick 1 mile run I decided to head outside. Today I even kept a nice brisk pace, quickly finished and headed straight to the gym to jump in the pool. Today the accomplishment was not the run but swimming in the lap pool unassisted. Oh, did I mention that I swam in 9ft water. I started off in the 5ft, right at the point where if you move your big toe one inch the floor of the pool appears to drop off just like a cliff. Yes, I swam from that point without touching the wall and continued down to the 9ft. Ok, back to running, today was great. 1.64 miles
Today, I felt energized and excited about running because it was also a pool day for me. Upon stepping on the gym floor I saw a friend on the treadmill and hopped on the free one next to her. I decided to take a slow and easy pace while contemplating if I would squeeze in some lower body strength training. Before I realized it I was about a half mile into the run and in a little over 11 minutes I was done. 1.00 mile.
Today I felt full of energy and was quite eager to get on the treadmill, believe it or not. I think I was initially planning to run one mile and head off to finish cardio on the bike before moving on to strength training. I got my handy dandy Jaybirds in and tuned in to Spotify and felt ready to go. Ten minutes into my run, I believed I could run a little longer but then a strange thing happened. (Mariah Carey, Fantasy Remix ft. ODB playing in the background keeping me moving). My music stopped streaming. Ok, this has happened before so I didn’t panic because it will come back on shortly, 2 minutes later I was still waiting. Finally, the music returned and stayed on for about 5 seconds before stopping again. In total, this start and stop music streaming went on for about another 10 minutes. On a positive note, I was now about 20 minutes into what I thought would be a 10 minute run. Ok, the music is back but now I’ve just decided to spend the entire 30 minutes on the treadmill. All and all everything worked out since I was able to get in some good cardio and increase my mileage for today. WINNING. 3.00 miles
So I’ve decided to embark on my first Run Streak. Oh, and this could very well be my last one. You may be wondering why I would be interested in running at least one mile every day, particularly in the middle of the winter. Actually, I saw the challenge somewhere in a Facebook post and for the month of January and thought I could handle this for at least one month. Also, I forgot to mention that I am also training for a half marathon which we will get to later. So, my first day out I decided to attend a fun run hosted by a couple of local running clubs in the area because after all it is pretty much freezing and I would have some company to commensurate with while out on the trail. This turned out to be a great event although the trail was partly flooded from downpours the past couple of days and forced us to turn back and completing only two and half of a four mile run. I was actually a little giddy and didn’t even mind having to run a hill on the way back since it was much better than the prospect of having to run 4 miles in below 30 degree temperature. – 2.50 miles
Still can’t believe I signed up for this half marathon, but I did. Now that I am committed I can’t always run alone so I organized group runs. So back up and at it before sunrise in frigid temperatures again. Although, I wasn’t sure anyone would show, one brave soul decided to join me, at least until she had to depart for work. I continued to press on for second lap. 3.23 miles
Although, it is another frigid day I was excited because I was invited on a group run with some acquaintances from my gym. So, the group decided to run about 6-7 miles but at least two other people needed to turn around and head back early and I planned to join them. The run started out at a nice and easy pace with part trails and street scenery. We spent the first 3 miles running and conversing about upcoming races then something happened. Someone’s fancy little app notified us that we had just completed 3 miles then the talking ceased and I could feel me feet leaving me quicker and quicker with each pounding of the ground. What do you know, we were all done and back at the parking lot just like we started and finished out with a pace of a minute and half quicker. 4 miles
My legs are tired and I really didn’t feel like running outside this morning. However, I only needed to run one mile to keep my streak going, so that’s what I planned. At about 10 minutes into my run I heard my app assistant let me know that I have reached “one mile”. I should stopped but I kept going until I reach my doorstep. 1.38 miles
Still cold outside and I just couldn’t conceive of running outside today so I hit the gym for my first indoor run of the year. I wanted to run at least 2 miles so I pondered, do I run a required 28 laps around the indoor track or hop on the dreadmill. Ok, since I was really not in the mood to run like a rat in a maze, I got on the treadmill. 20 minutes later I am done. 2.00 miles
Back to the gym for cardio. Today I decided to add the elliptical and finish up with the treadmill. Today was a treat, had my good friend to join me for the elliptical and upper body and core workout. 3.00 miles
I was alone, back outside and yes, it was frigid!!! Still, I am committed so even though my mind wanted me to stop my legs pressed on until I heard my digital friend from my app announce to me in ear “4 miles”. I quickly began to slow my pace and look over only to hear a friendly voice ask “have you ran yet” and my response, almost gleefully “I’m done”. 4.00miles
Today I took it slow and easy at an 11 minute pace. 1.00 mile
Back outside for my Saturday group run and not sure who was going to show. The group is struggling to make it out today so we were down to 3 people and two of whom were walking. I was the lone runner today. Not sure if it was possible but I planned for the best. At the end of the first mile I questioned my commitment but with each additional mile my feet were beginning to relax and feel as though they knew what to do. I’m winning. 5.00 miles
Still feeling a high from yesterday’s 5 mile run so I was in no rush to head outside. I decided to stick to the neighborhood, soak up the sun and take this run at a nice pace. This must be the warmest day of my runs this year with the temps sitting right at 60 degrees. I even felt a little warm during what felt like a relatively quick run. 1.50 miles
In the gym to do some strength training alone with cardio. Feeling pretty good about arriving at the gym early enough to beat out all the crowds over on the gym floor, flexing with the free weights. 2o minutes of stationary bike riding and off to 10 minutes on the treadmill before weights. 1.00 miles
Today I had to make time for the pool and cardio but I really didn’t feel like another treadmill session. So I decided to head out for a quick run then over to the gym to practice my breast stroke in the pool, which is another story. 1.64 mile
Motivation – having a strong reason to act or accomplish something.
I can’t tell you how many times I have contemplated that word and continue to hear people say that is one of their major obstacles to completing a task. I sometimes want to break out in a chuckle when I hear that word rolling off the tips of their tongue as they wait for me to reveal the secret! Ok, here goes… there is no magic pill and I should know because if that were true I would have spent big money on it by now. The biggest task with tackling motivation is not to think of your goal as a huge task but rather think small. Get started with something really small such as committing to signing up for a gym membership by a given deadline or working out at least once in the upcoming week. Here are a few things that have worked for me and I continue to rely on some of them.
- Workouts with a friend.
- Join a group (running, cycling, swimming etc).
- Commit to learning a new physical activity.
- Set a small short-term goal that does not necessarily involve a number for weight loss such as drinking less carbonated drinks, signing up for a challenge i.e. 30 day squat challenge.
- Sign up for a race and follow a training plan such as Hal Higdon training plans.
Keep in mind that once a goal has been accomplished it isn’t over. Continue to set new goals for yourself and soon something that seemed so daunting and impossible will be a lifestyle change!