Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The End of a Streak

Because of the 50 Miler, and all that surrounded it, I kind of forgot about another pretty major personal running achievement. The 50 mile race marked the last day of my running streak. It was 141 days, just over 1000 miles (average of 7 miles/day) and I ended it by choice and not due to illness, injury or anything else outside of my control.

I had debated about whether or not I should continue to run and I figured ultimately I would see how I felt the day after the race. Well, despite being pretty sore, I was not too bad.  I know for sure I could have easily ran a couple miles. In fact the following day when I was even more sore, I did run 2 miles, and felt better afterwards. I decided to end it because I wanted to be in control of when it ended. I like that 50 miles was the culmination of the streak. I knew going in that this thing wouldn't last forever. I figured I'd get the flu or something and that would end it and I would get all upset.  Ending it by choice has made me come to peace with it.

While it was going on, there was something cool about knowing that every single day at some point I needed to run. I imagine that may make some people feel trapped, dreading that daily run.  To me it felt like the opposite of that. I looked forward to it almost every day. Every day I ran was another day I was in control and things were going according to my plan. There is so much that I don't control in my life. This was something for myself that I would not compromise on.  I know full well that at times this was quite selfish.  Some days it would have been a lot easier for my family to not have to work around a run.  April would sometimes get sick of me asking about what time everything was happening so I could coordinate my run. But, most of the time it wasn't that big a deal to sneak in couple miles somewhere.

I had some close calls where I almost broke the streak.  I had a couple colds, some calf pain and one time when April was very sick I decided to quit, but then when she and the girls were in bed and finally sleeping at 11 pm, I snuck in a quick mile. I was back before anyone knew I had gone.

But now with my 50 mile finished, I want a solid 2 weeks of rest. I could have just done 1 or 2 miles every day for two weeks, but I really want days off of running.  I want to completely recharge before I start back up with marathon training. So that's exactly what I'm doing. Last week, I ran 8 miles, and only 3 of the 7 days. It was pretty weird to not be running, but it was a nice change too.

It looks so weird to have that short column after a 70 mile week
After my soreness wore off from my race, it left a bit of a knee injury in my left leg.  I don't think it's anything serious, but it comes at a good time when I'm resting anyway. I am not planning on starting another streak anytime soon.  I'm looking to run almost every day when I get going with marathon training, but I'm not going to be a slave to it.  Will I try to get another streak going at some point? Maybe.  Maybe I'll go for a whole year.  Who knows.  For now, I'm happy with 141 days and 1000 miles.

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