I shouldn’t try to excuse my poor blogging behavior, but does anyone else find it IMPOSSIBLE to blog in January? I should be brimming with updates on resolutions and waxing on about new beginnings and blah, blah, blah. But for weeks it seems like every time I have had an idea for this blog my motivation seems to evaporate. My mind turns numb and I utterly fail to write anything postworthy.
I blame January. Yes, I’m blaming the entire month for my bad behavior. I’ve never been a fan of it. It’s cold. It’s dark. It’s still full-on winter, but with none of the appeal of the holidays. So, I am happy – oh so very happy – that January is safely behind us and that we are onto a better and brighter February.
OK. Now down to the business of running.
Currently, I’m running an average of 60 miles a week.
60 miles (!!)
According to my runner’s log, I pounded 275 miles this month.
That’s a lot of miles. At least for me. I read about other runners who consistently log 70,80,90, even 100 miles a week and I am humbled. How do they do that!?
Transitioning to 60 miles a week has been bumpy. Prior to my 60mpw challenge I was running pretty comfortably at 50 miles a week. The small increase didnt seem like such a big deal at first. I felt motivated, happy and ready to run. So I put in one 60 mile week. That seemed OK. So I penciled in the second 60 mile week. It started out fine, but I began to feel tired. I was hungry constantly, much more than the mileage required, and my legs felt like slabs of salami. No worries, I thought, that’s just my body adapting. Give it time. But then last week I was exhausted. I mean, silly exhausted. And I ate a pile of frosting off a cake. I mean, it was gigantic pile of frosting. And then my shin started to hurt.
People, my shin never hurts. Ever.
So I took a moment, set aside my running log and my fixation on achieving those perfect 60 miles every week and found that I had made the following mistakes:
1. I was stingy. In an effort to save some pennies I figured I could keep running in my old shoes. How silly is that!? I have been running in a pair since November. I have a pair of trail shoes and pair of light weight shoes I use for tempo runs, track workouts and races, but a pair of Brooks Infiniti have been taking the lion’s share of my mileage. The were way past due for retirement and I suspect were the cause of much of my shin pain. I finally switched them out last week and my shin has been feeling better everyday (cross your fingers that it continues that way)
2. I was stubborn. I focused too much on seeing my weekly mileage add up to 60. I should have listened more to my body. I pushed my shin pain to the side. I ignored the days when my legs felt like lead. I didn’t fully recover between my runs. I really needed to be more conservative in my approach.
3. I ate terribly! Running 60 miles a week does not give me a free pass to eat junk.
4. I didn’t sleep enough. It has been said a zillion times, but if you don’t eat right, sleep right, and drink enough water, you’re really setting yourself up for trouble. And made all those mistakes.
So, after giving myself a stern lecture, I scaled back my running this past week and ran only 50 miles instead of 60. I feel much better. Now, if only I can remember all these great lessons the next time around.