Returning to Running

A typical view on my morning run
A typical view on my morning run

The last post I wrote on running was back in December when I said I was taking a break for a bit.

And boy did I ever - longer than I had planned.

After the Big Sur Half Marathon last November I stopped running completely. At Christmas, I ran a few miles here and there when I was out with the dogs, and ran a total of NINE miles in the entire month of December.

When January rolled around I felt ready to start running again, but then I adopted Coco and running took a back seat for a few weeks. Besides being a puppy, and all the attention and care that required, Coco had separation anxiety making it hard for me to leave for even just a few minutes.

For the first time I actually *missed* running. I would see people out running and felt insanely jealous of them. I longed to be out there for even just a few miles.

After a lot of trial and error, training and tears (both hers and mine), Coco started to adjust to being left home alone and I was able to run a total of 29 miles in January.

Gradually things continued to improve and I ran 50 miles in February and a whopping 70 miles in March!

Although my longest run since the Big Sur Half has only been eight miles, I felt like I was on the right track and making progress. My body felt better than it had in years and I was ready to start ramping up for longer runs and more miles.

But When April arrived I got lazy - really lazy. Case in point - as of today, April 19th - I've only run 22 miles for the entire month.

There really isn't any reason why I haven't run more. While Coco doesn't love being home alone, she accepts it so I can't blame her for not running. In fact, not only haven't I been running, but I haven't been working out at all. I haven't been this inactive in about ten years.

I felt so slothful. I needed to get my act together and get some races on my calendar. So I spent the past week researching races, consulting with my running coach and then went on a race registration spree!

In putting together this schedule, I tried to be mindful of my current fitness level and give my body ample time to get back in shape. Compared to the past few years, I feel a little like I’m underachieving here but I think this is a smart schedule to have, especially after the lessons I learned last year about how I ran down my body - and spirit - into exhaustion.

So without further ado, here's what I have planned for the year:

See Jane Run 5K - June 22

DSE Golden Gate Park 10K - July 6

DSE 6-hour Endurance Run - July 13

Giant Race Half Marathon - Sept 7

Big Sur Half Marathon - Nov 16

and the...

California International Marathon - Dec 7 (which also happens to be my birthday week!)

Taking a running hiatus taught me was that I had been way too hard on myself. What I did never felt good enough for me. Ironically, I would give anything to be back at that fitness level right now! :) Hindsight is everything and now I can appreciate the joys that a simple run brings!