Well, it’s been a minute, huh?? Okay, it has only been 12 days since I last blogged, but I’m not one of those people who takes long unplanned absences from blogging so this feels weird. I feel like so much has happened in the past 12 days.
I had a super busy week with our huge work event of the year last week, so not only was I not active in blogging I wasn’t doing much blog reading either. I read a few here and there but I didn’t comment much.
Here’s an update since the last time we talked:
I stopped training. It was a hard conversation to have with Laura after all she has done for me putting together my many weeks of training. She’s done a fantastic job with my training, but I finally just had to admit the truth: my heart is not into this training at all and I really, really don’t want to do it anymore. It feels pretty lousy to quit something, but I’ve felt so much better since I stopped so I know it was the right decision. I had a pretty bad 5 mile race a couple weekends ago – despite perfect running weather, I ran like crap and finished short of the very reasonable goal I had set for myself. Again. But more importantly, I hated every minute of that run, didn’t feel any exercise high afterward, and actually thought to myself that I could have just skipped the run, went straight to the beer festival that followed, and had a much better day. That thought concerned me, because I’ve never felt like it wasn’t worth it to run, and at that point I realized I could no longer deny what a rut I’ve been in and how unhappy I’ve been training for a goal I have no passion for. I knew it was time to cut the cord.
But that’s not all, because not only am I not training…
I’m not running right now. I am now 9 days sans running. In 2-3 more days, that will be a new PR for me for time off running. I didn’t intend to take time off this soon, but it just happened this way. Last week when work was crazytown and I was super stressed and busy, I ended up not running all week. And then at some point I realized – it felt great. A bunch of stress I’ve been feeling lately has disappeared. Even with a high-pressure work week, I’ve felt happier and more like myself this week than I have in months. So, I’m gonna roll with this unplanned break and see where it goes.
I’m still on the fence about what this means for the races I’ve signed up for. I’ve already registered, so I don’t want to throw that money away, but I also don’t want to drag myself to a couple of 10Ks and a 5K that I don’t want to do – especially if I’m still not running at that point. I’m going to wait and see how I’m feeling. Luckily these short local races aren’t exactly breaking the bank, but still.
Here are some updates that are a little more positive:
I quit Strava. I don’t just mean I removed the app from my phone, I mean, I straight up deleted my account and never looked back. I suddenly had this epiphany that these social training apps add nothing to my life and are only a source of negative feelings. So, I just ditched it. #ByeFelicia.
I’m signing up for my next marathon!!
Guaranteed entry registration for the 2017 Chicago Marathon opens in 8 DAYS and I am so excited! Seeing all the stories from the 2016 race really pumped me up for my own journey to Chicago next year, so I was over the moon to find out they’re opening registration early and I get to sign up soon! I have a good feeling about this one: I think it’s going to be my most fun and meaningful marathon journey yet. This training cycle has really showed me that I am a distance runner through and through, and I’m eager to return back to my strengths. My appetite for longer distances is very slowly coming back, and I know that taking some time to recharge now followed by a long break from structured training in the spring will be just what I need to be raring to go when training officially starts in June.
I’m rebranding my blog (read: creating a new one). This didn’t come from a dissatisfaction with my current blog; rather, I was just suddenly struck with a great new blog idea and decided to run with it.
Here’s the story: while I am absolutely stoked to run the Chicago Marathon next fall, there will be a lot going in my life that will require me to simplify my running and training. Budgeting will get tighter, and I won’t be able to spend a zillion dollars on workout gear and tune-up races. With a lot more going on in my life, I won’t have the time or attention for a hardcore training cycle and I can’t make running so much of a priority that it’s “like a second job” anymore.
So, how can I incorporate a “less is more” strategy into my training – doing the quality work that will prepare me for the distance without going overboard, obsessing over details, and letting training dominate my life? I think my journey to answer those questions would make a great blog, and voila – the “minimal marathoner” is born!
I’m still developing minimalmarathoner.com, and I’m not sure when I’ll make the official switch. I want to do it after I sign up for Chicago since that’s when my journey to marathon #4 will officially begin, but it seems kind of weird to have a running blog while I’m not running, so I think I will wait until later. I hope you’ll all follow along! I’ll make an announcement here when I’m making the switch and until then I will keep blogging about who knows what on here. Stay tuned!
Honestly, I have really been enjoying my time off from running – and blogging. As much as I love to blog, I often find I’m a lot happier when I’m not so immersed in what everyone else is doing all the time. I love to read about people’s running journeys but sometimes I just need a break from reading about so much damn training (no offense!). I’m not going to take time off from blogging like I am with running, but I probably will cut back a little bit until my new blog is born.
In the meantime, life has opened up for me lately. While planning for and carrying out our big work event was stressful and busy, it went great and I was really proud of the hard work I put in and my coworkers put in to make it happen. It made work feel so alive again. I drank beer, I said yes to nights out, I hung out with friends I haven’t hung out with in forever, and this weekend I even went on impromptu bike ride just to see some fall leaves. I ended up riding 20 miles! And it was easy and I wasn’t the least bit sore or tired afterward either…maybe I’m in the wrong sport? 🙂
So, I’m going to continue in this vein of just taking my life as it comes, letting things open up for me, and finding out a little more about who I am when I’m not a runner. Surely not every week will be as good as this one, but I know this is something I need to do for the time being – whether it’s for the next couple weeks or the rest of the year. Stay tuned!