So, you might have noticed that I haven’t really been running much. Normally, at this time of year, I’m heavily into half-marathon training. Last year, I ran the Rocktoberfest Half Marathon in Charlotte, NC and before that, I ran the Silver Comet Half Marathon for several years in a row.
There’s no real reason that I’m not training for a fall half except that I don’t want to. Typically, when I run a half-marathon, for a couple of weeks after I never want to see my running shoes again. And then the desire to run comes back and I sign up for another race. That’s how it’s been year after year until this year. That desire to run just never came back this time. Well, that’s not entirely true; the desire to run 13.1 miles, or really to train for it, is what didn’t come back.
Truth is, I hate running in the summertime. I don’t like getting up at the crack of dawn to get the miles in before it gets too hot. I don’t like waiting in line for the treadmill at the gym and then feeling like I have to get off after 20 minutes because people are waiting since it’s too hot to run outside. I could tell you a million things that i don’t like, but there’s still something that i do like and that’s running. I’m contradicting myself, I know.
My first half-marathon was in 2005. So in the past seven years, I somehow went from “casual runner who runs on the treadmill to stay fit and does a couple races for fun” to “My life revolves around getting the miles in. I need to get faster. I need to PR.” And when you’re not a particularly fast runner (let’s face it; I’m not), that’s a stressful mind frame to be in for years upon years.
Really I never was the casual, running for cardio type. I decided to become a distance runner when I could only run 3 or 4 miles at a time. I read about people who ran distances (for argument sake, let’s say distance is more than 9-10 miles) and wanted that to be me. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. And I proved it. I proved it time and time again. I kept proving it and at some point, I stopped enjoying it.
So what I’ve been doing without really realizing it is becoming that runner that I never was. The casual jogger that goes running to blow off steam (or to burn off ice cream) not to get the miles in.
Jason and I signed up for a 5K in a month. It’s one that I’ve done in the past and enjoyed it. But instead of filing my days with tempo runs and speedwork to train, I’m simply going to run.