C is the Most Important Letter

bcisthemostimportantletter

Consistency

It wasn’t that long ago that I wrote a post about the ABCs of running (you can read it here), mostly to remind myself of things I would need to remember when I toe the start line of a race again. Except I still haven’t and right now I have zero plans to do so.

When it comes to the ABCs of running, though, I think C is the most important letter — especially when you pair it with consistency!

woman about to run during golden hour
The key to keeping your body used to running is running consistently | Photo by Tirachard Kumtanom on Pexels.com

By consistency I mean just keep running
Although I do advise you to mix it up — explore different locations, run on different surfaces, run easy most of the time but hard occasionally. All those things will keep running interesting.

Variety may be the spice of life, but if you’re not running at least three times a week you’re going to struggle because it’s almost as though you’re learning to run over and over and over again.

In fact, I have friend that will pretty much take the Winter off

You know what? They complain about how hard running is when they start again! That’s because it only takes a few days to start “detraining”.

You don’t have to have aspirations of running faster, or be chasing a PR — but by running consistently you are far less likely to be injured, because you body will remain adapted to running.

Be consistent with rest days, too
A friend recently realized that she hadn’t taken a true rest day in almost 2 months. No wonder she was feeling burned out — and achy.

I have to admit that lately I am getting far fewer true rest days than I’d like, as often my rest days are spent going to my mom. There isn’t a lot I can do about that, though, other than recognize that I’m not getting as much rest as I probably need to pay attention to the feedback from my body.

You should have at least one true rest day a week. That might mean some easy walking or soothing Yoga, but it doesn’t mean a power walk or power Yoga (or hot Yoga, or Ashtanga).

woman covered in white blanket lying on bed
Sleeping in once in a while is no big deal. If you want to become a early morning riser, though, you have to be consistent about getting up early! | Photo by Elvira Gibadullina on Pexels.com

Consistency is the key to almost anything in life
I always say I’d rather you do 10 minutes of Yoga several days a week, rather than an hour long class once a week. When I was playing my flute all through out my school years, that meant practicing — every single day.

Want to get up earlier in the morning? Guess what: getting up early one day a week and late the other six isn’t going to help you make getting up early a habit!

Final Thoughts
Have you ever watched your dog or cat get up after sleeping? They stretch, right? They stretch a lot! Every.Single.Time. It’s part of how they stay limber. They don’t just stretch every once in a while, they stretch after getting up all the time. It’s just their nature.

Run consistently and running will just be your nature, too

You might also enjoy:

5 Cs of Mental Toughness

PRs Don’t Just Happen

Does it Feel Like that Breakthrough will Never Happen?

Consistency is the Hobgoblin of Little Minds

What do you think the most important letter for running is?
What did you wish you did more consistently?
What have you learned you
need to do consistently to keep running?

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Does it feel like that breakthrough will never happen?

bbreakthrough

Breakthrough: a sudden, dramatic, and important discovery or development

My friends have started to say things like:

You’re so fast now!

You can’t call yourself BOTP anymore!

While neither statement is true (I’m usually heading up the rear in our very small running group — still), it does feel like I’m finally making the breakthrough I always knew I had in me. I always trained hard-ish, always did the things everyone said you needed to do to get faster . . . and yet I didn’t.

It seemed as though the cards were stacked against me in race after race. Injury, heat, humidity, crazy winds . . . they all seemed to derail my attempts at a breakthrough time and time again.

What makes it difficult for people trying to follow a dream is that the whole time you feel like you’re slamming your head against the wall. So it’s nice to make a breakthrough and not kind of lying there with your head bleeding.— Lewis Black

You can’t have a breakthrough if you don’t keep trying

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Hard work is rewarded . . . eventually

It’s not how many times you fall . . .
Seriously, it may be trite, but it’s true: it’s about how many times you pick yourself up. It’s about total belief in yourself and what you’re doing, no matter if you’re not getting results or people tell you you’re crazy.

I just knew I had a faster half marathon in me. I believed it, despite all the evidence to the contrary. When that breakthrough came at the Panama City Beach Half Marathon (read that recap here), it was, quite frankly, a huge surprise to me. And I’ve continued to surprise myself this year with more breakthroughs.

The key to the breakthrough is consistency
I truly believe that the road to breakthroughs is paved by consistent work. It applies to everything you do in life. I had a similar story with my weight loss. For years I was stuck yo-yoing back and forth the same few pounds.

It was frustrating. It was aggravating. It was disappointing. To be so close . . . yet not able to reach the finish line. It would have been super easy to give up — but I’ve been there, I’ve done that, and it’s never pretty.

So I kept on keeping on. I kept showing up, I kept doing all the things I knew that worked and one day . . . it did. I’ll be honest: unlike my running, I did question if I could do it. I still do, some days. Yet some small part of me must have believed, because eventually I got where I wanted to be (maintaining that; let’s just say that’s a whole different story). In cased you missed it, I talked about running and weight loss yesterday here.

You can’t have a breakthrough if you don’t keep trying.
— Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy

Deb Runs

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

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Tell me in the comments:

What was your breakthrough moment (doesn’t have to be running related)?

What do you believe led to that breakthrough?

Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds

Consistency

Or is it?

When I started looking at quotes for today’s Wednesday Word, consistent, that particular quote popped into my mind. I’ll bet I’m not the only blogger who thought of it.

But where did the quote come from? Obviously I am not well read enough, because, as it turns out, it’s actually a misquote from Ralph Waldo Emerson. The actual quote is:

A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

Now don’t take this the wrong way, but Emerson’s quote is exactly why I rarely join in run streaks or challenges consisting of one exercise every day. I think variety is, indeed, the spice of life, and I think anything taken to extremes isn’t necessarily a good thing.

Only you can define what is taking something to extreme for you, and what will motivate you. And don’t forget that at times I’ve been known to overexercise with the best of them.

Then I ran across this interesting article that explores consistency a bit further.

It’s what we do everyday that counts

In essence, if we want to direct our lives, we must take control of our actions. It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives, but what we do consistently.
–Tony Robbins

Getting back to consistent, though, I truly believe that being consistent is very important for runners.

One definition of consistent is “continuing to develop or happen in the same way”.

It really seems like I’m at odds here — I won’t runstreak, or do planks or lunges or squats every day, but I want things to be consistent. My definition of consistent is simple: to just keep showing up and doing the work.

That I can do. That I have done for the seven years I’ve been running. That I’ve been doing for the last eight years since I went back to Weight Watchers at my highest weight ever.

Quite simply, being consistent is the secret to my success.

Just what is a hobgoblin, anyway?

Oh God, I so need one, because according to Wikipedia, hobgoblins:

. . . are often found within human dwellings, doing odd jobs around the house while the family is lost in sleep. Such chores are typically small deeds, like dusting and ironing. Often, the only compensation necessary in return for these is food

I would love to have little guys come in while I sleep and dust and iron and maybe clean the bathroom, too. It would free me up to bake more, which is totally a win-win situation.

Deb Runs

Tell me in the comments:

How are you consistent?

What’s your definition of consistent?

Don’t you want a hobgoblin now?