Sunday, September 11, 2016

Trying to find motivation

It used to be that no day was complete without a run.  If I didn't run before work in the morning, it was the first thing I did after work.  And I wanted to run.  Every day.  I didn't get home and think to myself that maybe it would be ok to skip the run because I just wasn't feeling it.  I was always feeling it.  I've been noticing lately that that is gone.  Now I get home and just don't feel it many days.  I guess there is a combination of reasons for that.  I suspect that one of the culprits is all the time I took off for tendonitis.  I had to adapt and learn not to need the run so badly simply because it wasn't an option for so many months.  And I'm beginning to think that the other culprit is the stress factor.  Running has always been my stress reliever.  My job over the past 8 years was often high-stress, and I absolutely needed a run at the end of the day to de-stress.  It was really hard for me to deal with the inability to run during my bouts with tendonitis because it meant I was unable to really de-stress at the end of each day.  I finally left that job, and have found myself in a job that has, so far, been stress free!  It kinda weirds me out... Each day the school day ends and I find myself continuing to work because I want to.  I'm not in a hurry to leave because I am enjoying what I do and I don't mind continuing to work.  This is so opposite from my last job where I had to get home and go for a run asap before my head exploded. When I do eventually get home from work, I don't need the run, and because I don't need it, I am finding it harder to make myself do it.  I know I do and did enjoy running, but at some point I guess it became more about needing it than wanting it.  And now I have to learn how to want it again.  And I think another part of the problem right now is that I'm in a new area and I haven't found a good loop that I like.  I'm not used to the flat yet, and all the flat parts in between the hills sap my energy and make me want to quit.  I'm hoping that I'll adjust soon and be able to enjoy running around my new town.

Monday was my last day in Lewisburg for the long weekend.  I had donuts for breakfast with the kids.  I was a little worried about running after donuts, but I hadn't had a chance to run at all earlier in the weekend, and I couldn't leave town without revisiting my beloved hills.  So I set out for a run, thinking I might manage 3-5 miles.  I ran 9+ miles.  My legs were so happy to be back on the old familiar hills.  The weather was gorgeous with a chill in the air but warm sunshine.  And I didn't want to stop.  So I ran until my hip started to feel broken, and then I stopped.  It was the best run I've had in a long time!

Today I went for a "longer" run.  I had biked most of the loop, and knew it would come out to be somewhere over 6 miles, but couldn't remember exactly how long it was.  And I didn't let myself pull up the map to check, because I needed a longer run and just needed to make myself get out there and do it.  I also made myself push the pace a little bit, because I've been settling into a jog too often lately and am losing the ability to push and run faster.  The loop turned out to be 7.5, and I was hurting at the end.  I used to run 7-8 miles each day and feel great.  And now 7.5 feels like a chore.  I'd love to blame all the flatness, but that can't be the only problem.  I have got to find my motivation and start training hard again.

Last night I was looking at races in the area over the next month or two.  I found a half marathon not too far away from me, on October 1.  I think I'm going to sign up, just to give myself a reason to start training harder.  I have another half in Roanoke in November, and I'm hoping that the October 1st race will jump start my training and then hopefully I can keep it going in order to do really well in November.

I also realize that doing a group run twice a week with people who are slower than me is not helping my own training.  But, they are the only people I know in town right now, and they are fun to hang out with.  I may have to start running alone on at least one of those nights though...I can always still finish around the same time as the group and join them to socialize afterwards...not sure what I will end up doing, but something is going to have to change if I want to get my speed and endurance back.

This week : 
M : run 9.2 / 8:09 / 823 ft
T : group hills 5.5 / 8:13 / 390 ft
Creeper Trail w/ Glenn 5.6 / 8:10 / 171 ft
R : early morning speed work 4 / 8:00 / 0 ft
warm-up, 4x400 with fast jog 400 recoveries, cool-down
F : bike w/Paul 13.9 / 14.9 mph / 981 ft
Sa : bike 18.7 / 17.3 mph / 1066 ft
Su : run 7.5 / 7:36 / 446 ft

bike total : 32.7 miles
run total : 31.8 miles

There's this random bike lane on the road by my street that is almost exactly a quarter mile long.  It's really random and it doesn't make much sense, especially since it ends right before a blind curve, but it is useful for sprints...

Sprints going north, fast jog recovery going south. My times weren't super consistent, but you can tell I was dying on the 3rd one and then put in extra effort on the 4th one trying to make up for it.

I was going to do a long run on Saturday, but didn't want to set an alarm.  I went to bed at 11 and was just hoping that I wouldn't sleep too late.  I was tired though, and didn't want to set an alarm because I didn't want the long run badly enough to deprive myself of much-needed sleep.  I didn't wake up til 11 AM.  I am loving this bedroom that doesn't have an east-facing window...  It was too hot for a long run by the time I was up and moving, so I decided I should bike instead and do a slightly shorter run after church on Sunday. 

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