Yesterday was gorgeous! It was in the 40's but the warm sun was out in a perfectly blue sky. It was one of those days that I was thankful that I am a runner and get to see the beauty of our world.
My almost-daily run ended up being later than normal because I stopped at Three Penny after school for drinks with the interns. Since I only needed a 4 miler, I figured it would be OK to do it after.
To my surprise I ran a 7:07 min/mile pace during the run, which is faster than I "normally" want. But it was during that run that I started to think about what I really can and should be doing while I'm out there.
This whole training season I have been following a schedule. I have let running articles, blogs, and this training schedule dictate how fast I run. I feel guilty when I run faster than a 7:20 min/mile pace. I feel pressure to run slower than 8 min/mile on all of my runs longer than 8 miles. And when I don't run on target I start to beat myself up.
What has gotten into me?!
Last night I let myself go. I felt great the whole run. If someone were running with me I would have been able to have a conversation. My legs were feeling great, and could have run faster. And there was absolutely no pain in any muscle (just in my right heel where the blister from last week formed).
We all have a different background and path to how we came to be the runners we are today. I used to push myself so hard in college, but since graduation have become scared (?) to. It finally occurred to me last night that I may have been holding myself back this whole time. How do I know that I'm not a faster runner than before? I wouldn't know unless I started to train like one.
I need to stay calm over the next week and not do anything crazy. But once the marathon is done I need to run for the sake of running. My blah week last week might have had something to do with this internal struggle to listen to my body versus what others (media, articles, etc) are saying.
I think it is time to kick my running up a notch!