Newsflash: It’s not always fun

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Wendy @ Takingthelongwayhome recently made the comment of why do it if it’s not fun (or words to that effect) when she decided to drop down from a 50k to a half.

This is not a rebuttal to Wendy’s post — we all have our reasons for training or not training, for skipping runs or not, for dropping distances. Hers were very valid! You can read it here. It did, however, spark the idea for this post.

Fairytales and Fitness

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Some days I’m really glad I’m not training for anything

Some days it’s just not fun
I’ve been getting out there earlier and earlier this Summer. Mostly it’s been hot & humid & it’s just what I had to do to make my runs more funcomfortable.

I made the decision early on during this Pandemic to do my utmost to run outside — unless there was truly dangerous weather or real stay-at-home orders were enacted. So far, so good.

It isn’t always fun, though. I do my best to get out on the most runner-friendly days of the weeks, but most of us have been experiencing an unseasonably hot Summer, and even upstate NY is not immune.

There have been days it’s so buggy I must look like an insane person while swatting constantly. There are days that have been so hot|sunny|humid — or worse yet, all three! — that I feel as though an elderly grandmother using a walker could pass me.

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I keep running because some days I end with a smile on face

So WHY am I out there anyway?
I say it frequently on this blog: your why is the most important thing in anything you choose to do. It’s what will keep you motivated. It’s what keeps the tough going when the going gets tough.

I am out there because I don’t want to break up with running. Oh sure, some days for sure I do want to break up with running. Ultimately, though, I want to keep running the rest of my life — even if I am never able to race again.

Running has taught me so much, has made me so much stronger, has shown me that I am stronger than I think I am. I hope to keep adding states to my tour of the States eventually. It’s all part and parcel of why I keep running, even when it’s not fun.

More about MY why:

Just Keep Running
Some days it won’t be fun. Some runs you’ll think running is really stupid and ask yourself why you’re torturing yourself this way. The answer is simple: because some days running is just what the doctor ordered. Some days you’ll feel like you can conquer the world because you ran.

Keep running through the bad runs so you can run through the great runs. — Chocolaterunsjudy

What is your WHY?

Has your why changed because of the pandemic?

Have you ever considered hanging up your running shoes? Have you ever actually done it?

 

3 Surprising Things You Must Consider . . .

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. . . if you’re planning to sign up for a Fall distance race

Most likely you are already signed up for that Fall half or marathon. But maybe you aren’t, and you’re beginning to look around at races. No doubt you think about the course, the weather, and the location.

There’s much more you need to consider before handing over the money you worked so hard for to the race director. And here are three points maybe you haven’t considered . . . but you should.

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Why are you signing up?
Your why is the most important thing about a race, hands down. Your why will get you out the door on days you don’t want to get out the door. Your why will help you to choose your fuel wisely. Your why will make you actually do the boring stuff like foam rolling and journaling.

Some great “whys”:

  • You want to challenge yourself
  • It’s in a place that you are longing to see
  • It’s for a worthy cause — one that really motivates you
  • You want to boost your confidence

Some not so great “whys”:

  • FOMO (fear of missing out)
  • The Bling/swag — these things are sweet, but will they really motivate you out the door? Only you know

I spent a lot of time during my run yesterday thinking about my why. Why is it so important to me to get faster? In the moment, as I was pushing myself hard, yet failing to come close to my paces (and I know Rachel @ Runningonhappy will say it’s okay), it seemed . . . too hard. Silly, maybe, even. And yet . . . my goal of running all fifty states motivated me to keep on getting out there.

I can run a half marathon without working so hard, I know. (Don’t worry Rachel, I actually do want to work that hard). But I do believe I need to work on my own “why”.  Why is getting faster important to me? I have some reasons, but I’m not sure they’re really good enough reasons. Stay tuned.

Your “why” is the most important thing you need to figure out. It can mean the difference between a great race and  a meh race — because if you are motivated by your “why”, you’ll be willing to do the hard work.

Do you have the time?
The first time consideration is whether or not you have enough time to train. Different runners need different amounts of time to train. If you have a month and you don’t have a good base of running, it’s probably a bad idea to sign up for a distance race.

Next there’s the question of whether or not you have enough time to race. Do you really want to arrive somewhere on Friday, race on Saturday, and hop in the car or on a plane later on Saturday to head home? It can be done; people do it all the time. But is that what you really want to do? Do you think you’ll look back on that race with fondness — or regret that you didn’t spend more time there?

Finally, there’s the question of whether or not you literally have the time. Time off from work, time off from family commitments, time away from your family.

What if I can’t run it?
Things go wrong. People get sick. People lose their jobs. You get injured. You buy a new home and have no time to train.

Which is exactly why I look for races that allow you to either defer your race to the next year or transfer your bib to someone else.  I truly wish that these options would be standard at any distance race. Yet they aren’t.

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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

coachescornerTalk to me:

Do you look for races that allow deferrals?

Do you know your “why”?

Is getting faster important to you?