#RWRunStreak In Review

I almost feel weird writing this — on a day when I am so clearly in no shape to run.

I made it through 39 days of a 40 day run streak, and I have no guilt over skipping just this one.

(I didn’t intend for the first two lines of this post to rhyme.)

I threw out my back yesterday, and the streak may or may not have had something to do with it.  But I am in too much pain to care over missing just one run.

I am more upset that it’s New Year’s Eve, and I can’t run.  You see, my first official “long run” was on New Year’s Day of 2012, when a few days after learning I had been accepted to the 2012 NYC Half, I laced up to see if I could manage to get through five miles without stopping.  I did it and I was so proud!  I was positively beaming until the next weekend when my training plan had me running six.  But I did it.  I did that and so much more.

I am so proud of how far I have come as a runner in 2012.  Runner’s World Holiday Run Streak was – for me – in no way about whether I could prove something to myself as a runner.  For me, it meant only a way of keeping myself focused on health and fitness, and keeping my body in great shape, through a season fueled by temptation, excess and a good amount of stress.  So, goal achieved!

I drank more green beverages between Thanksgiving and New Year’s of 2012 than I did in all of 2011.  I racked up 140 miles during the weeks when most people sit around eating cookies and watching It’s a Wonderful Life (which is actually a great film).  I maintained my weight but toned up more than I could imagine.  I am wearing smaller clothing and the improvement in my muscle tone is significant…and obvious.

For me, these were some of the benefits of the run streak.  When I ran a streak this summer, I was rewarded with a faster 10K time and a bikini body to rock for the rest of summer.  My runs were shorter, but faster and more frequent.  So, I knew going in to this precisely what to expect.

I loved the idea of the focus and structure of running at least one mile each day.  The benefits are immeasurable.

But I will say this:  they can’t all be good days.  Inevitably, in any training cycle, you will have a few bad runs.  Running every day makes them stand out a bit more, and feel more frequent.  There are days that I panicked over losing fitness (I didn’t), and wearing out my legs (treadmills were the culprit, but road runs and trails did no harm); and days when I needed to cut runs short because of fatigue or because I was a few days away from an important race.  It’s all okay.

Even though it’s Day #40, and my fingers are running across the keyboard instead of my feet across the Central Park bridle path, I am still proud of my achievements during this run streak.

I am proud of my body – not just for the way it now looks, but for helping me log all of those miles.

I am proud of my spirit – for staying on course and running through the holiday season, unbent and unbroken by each time a friend or a family member tried to talk me out of a run.

I am proud of my mind – the cognitive benefits of running are boundless; I have stayed level-headed through what has been a rough few weeks at work and a lot of traveling around to spend time with family and friends.

I am proud of myself – running each day has given me a lot of “alone time” to get to know myself better as a person and as a runner.

I feel clearheaded and free.

Running is a gift.

Here are some of the highlights of my last 39 days in running:

Total miles ran:  140

Longest run:  10 miles

Shortest run:  1 mile

Terrains:  roads, trails, urban jogging paths, sidewalks, treadmills

Number of treadmill runs:  6

Interesting (and unplanned) numbers:  6 miles on 12/6, 8 miles on 12/8, 15K on 12/15 (okay, fine, I knew about this one)

Number of times I ran through snow:  twice, 12/22 (flurries) and 12/29 (full-on snow)

Number of races completed during the run streak:  2 (Join the Voices and Ted Corbitt Classic)

Number of PR’s set: 2

Run On™

2 thoughts on “#RWRunStreak In Review

  1. Pingback: A Healthy Start (recipe included) « Rachel On and On

  2. Pingback: A Pain in the Butt | Rachel On and On

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