The easiest part about running every day for three months is that I always want to run. The hardest part about running every day for three months is that I always want to run.
At this point the sheer habit of the streak has become self perpetuating. I wake up each morning knowing I am going to run- it is just a matter of when. Maybe it will be raining, or snowing, or sleeting. Maybe it will be in the morning, more likely at lunch, and hopefully too close after dinner. But always at least 30 minutes, and always outside.
Earlier on, in December and January, my mileage was a bit lower; many of my runs didn’t last too much longer than a half hour, somewhere north of a 5k. Lately I have been able to stretch out routine runs closer to 5 miles, with some longer runs on the weekends in good weather. Speaking of which, I watch the daily and weekly forecast like a hawk. How will the running be? Do I need an extra layer? Will it be clear in the afternoon, or only in the morning? Which pair of gloves do I need? Wait now I need sunscreen?
Running on vacation (at DisneyWorld) was tough, but not impossible. At the Polynesian I eschewed the official running trail (and the crowded walkways) around the hotel and eventually ran around the entire lagoon in different segments. I am still mildly surprised I wasn’t ran off by security, but I had no problems running behind the Magic Kingdom. This may not be news to a native Floridian, but its funny how… non-scenic the immediate area surrounding the theme park is. Even when you are close enough to hear the crowds on Thunder Mountain, or one of the steam locomotives circling around the park, Cinderella’s Castle remains out of sight- along with much of anything else. Running at the Art of Animation hotel was easier, and more scenic, thanks to the nice path around ‘Hourglass Lake‘. A bit more whimsical too, since various trivia markers littered the entire course, imparting bits of pop culture or disney animation history.
As little as my legs wanted to go out for a jog after a day chasing the kids around the Magic Kingdom, I know Katie was just as excited to watch them while I was out- but her support has been instrumental in keeping the streak alive. On the day we drove back to Orlando I foolishly squandered the morning, virtually forcing myself to run 3 miles in the dead of night after a 600 mile drive. Somehow that 11pm run wasn’t that bad.
For some reason I feel like the weekends can be the hardest time to run, since I have to take time away from my family to spend on the road or trail. At best I am skipping out on nap time; at worst the kids are bouncing off the walls and Katie needs a nap. But I’m still running.
I have to admit that one side effect of my running is my shoe collection. First of all, I have one now. I have two pairs of shoes that I rotate for running every other day. I keep my older high-mileage shoes for rainy days, or just for wearing when I’m not running. Now I eagerly await for the newest version of my favorite running shoes (Currently Saucony’s kinvara and virrata) to come out, since I know that the outdated ones will go on closeout sales.
Earlier this month I eclipsed 100 days; my current goal is to run every day of 2014. For this year triathlons, and cross training in general, have taken a back seat to my new habit. Weirdly enough I haven’t paid too much attention to actually racing; I am of the belief that running a streak is not the most effective way to train for a race anyway, and running every day is at least as fulfilling as training for a race. That said I will have another marathon in a few weeks- the Raleigh Rock n Roll Marathon. I don’t expect an insane improvement over my first marathon last March, but I do hope to break 4 hours again.
ps I realize I am probably going to die of heart disease anyway.