A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

What Running Has Taught Me This Year

For the past two weeks, I have enjoyed reading posts from various bloggers including Lacey & Meranda @ Fairytales and Fitness and  Wendy @ Taking the Long Way Home about what running has taught them this year. I figured I would jump on the bandwagon and reflect on what I have learned this year in regards to running.



Let's start with the biggest thing I learned, thanks to the Hansons Marathon Method. No matter how bad I wanted to be a 6 day a week runner, running 6 days a week is too much for me. 

Another thing I learned, which is also tied to my go at Hansons... I don't need a cookie cutter plan. I am pretty good at designing plans for myself.

Related to that is to trust myself and my instincts when it comes to my training. No one knows ME better than ME.

I didn't race much this year. I did the Last Man Standing, Capitol 10 Miler, Movie Madness Half Marathon, and the Run 4 the Sun 5k. I had ambitious but attainable goals for two of those races but didn't reach them. I felt crappy about it for a couple days, but then I got over it. I will continue to make ambitious goals. I don't like feeling crappy but the risk is worth it.

The last thing I'll share is something that I didn't learn this year, but something I continue to feel and be thankful for... Running is not my identity. I am not "a runner". Well, I am a runner, but I am many, many, many many, many other things.

I'm a daughter, sister, wife, aunt, cat mommy, teacher, puzzler, lifter, AND a runner.

I never want my identity or worth tied to one specific activity. Running means A LOT to me, but I don't ever want it to mean EVERYTHING to me.
What has running taught you this year?
How long do you feel crappy after not reaching a goal?

30 comments:

  1. Running teaches us all so much! I have learned that as much as I truly love it, there are other sports that I love too and it's OK for me to only run 3-4 days per week so I can make room to swim, cycle and do weights. I have also learned that when I start to compare myself to others (or even to myself 10 years ago) it steals my joy away. I have learned that relaxing and slowing down and not having my body get injured or even ache as much is way better than to push and regret it. I have also learned that I really enjoy listening to podcasts while I run. Its a trade off because the music often times gave me a bit of a speedier pace, but man do I find my runs way more peaceful and relaxing and for me that is the whole point because I don't race, and I really don't set goals other than: have fun and don't get injured!

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    1. I think about my body sometimes during a run and feel good and want to do MORE but then I think about... well, what if my ITB hurts later. Am I going to wish I stopped now??? "Don't get greedy," Susan says! :) Thanks for teaching me that. You definitely love running just for the sake of running just like me!

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  2. What you are saying reminds me of a sign I have in my home. It says "Dogs are not our whole lives, but they certainly make our lives whole". You could replace the word "dogs" with "running".

    I have not formally done research on Hansons, but from what I've read on blogs I know it is not for me. I wonder if there are bloggers out there that love the plan and why they do. I just feel that it is a lot of running and would eventually cause burn out or injury. Again, this is just an assumption based on what I have read from other bloggers. You had a great year.

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    1. That sign is awesome! I am sure we all have something in our lives we could replace dogs with. My cats mayyyyy be my whole life though hehe :)

      The reason I tried Hansons was because so many people found success with it! And then I read the book and was hooked. But I had to try it to know it wasn't for me. :(

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  3. And a friend. You're definitely a good friend! 😀

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    1. Aw thank you Emily! You are a good friend too. :)

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  4. I hate to admit but after finding out this week that I have RA, I realized that running is who I am. It isn't everything to me--yes, I'm a mom, a wife, a friend, an NP, but I don't want to be my disease. I'd rather be running.

    We learn so much from the road, don't we? :)

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    1. We sure do! You are not your disease for sure, Wendy. You ARE a runner- and a billion other things!

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  5. If I don't meet a goal, I let myself pout for a day or two, then it's time to woman up and get back out there. I do think it's important to process if it didn't go our way, but it also let's me see where I need to improve.

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    1. That's a very good perspective and exactly what I try to do!

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  6. Great perspective! I'm not sure exactly what running itself has taught me this year, but my body has certainly given me signs that I was running too much, so I'm in the process of finding a healthy balance with that. I learn things while I'm running, for sure. Most of my great ideas happen during a run. And after I run, I am much less likely to be homicidal, so there's that too.

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    1. Oh my gosh good point. I tend to be in a better mood after a workout and food.

      I do a lot of thinking and introspection during runs, so I guess I also could have mentioned that I learn things WHILE i run. Especially from all the podcasts I listen to!

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  7. You're an awesome runner and person, Meg. Even though Hansons plan and the marathon did not work out you had a great year of running and a very impressive 5K race recently. I love that you do it for you and don't try to fit into the mold of a plan. I really wish I had not followed that plan too because I think not taking adequate recovery probably contributed to me getting hurt :(.

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    1. Thank you so much Amy. I do really love running and am probably even more happy running for "fun". PRs and placing feel great, boy do they feel great, but I don't NEED that at all. I do want it from time to time. :)

      You know what, all you can do is learn from this and move forward. I know you felt great during training and your injury was pretty sudden. It's not like you were pounding through pain for days and weeks. We can be training as smart as we know how and shit happens.

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  8. Those are great lessons! This is one of my favorite parts of your blog, you are a runner, and a great, fast and strong runner, but it doesn't take over your whole identity. Because it's true, we run and we enjoy it, but It's not everything we are. Thank you for that!

    I'm still trying to figure out what I learn from running this year.

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    1. Thank YOU Ana! I just don't want my identity to be all wrapped up in one thing. That's not healthy. Then running is controlling my life, not enhancing it.

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  9. Great lessons! Its so important to be able to figure out what kind of training works best for you. Also, to be able to separate yourself from running. I am hoping to post about what i learned this year later this week!

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    1. I look forward to reading it! I have a feeling you learned a lot.

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  10. This was last week's Tuesdays on the Run topic. I went to link you up, alas it is closed. But yes, running teaches us a ton. I learned awhile back that high mileage a la Pete Pfitzinger is so not for me. I suspect I'd feel the same way about Hanson's.

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    1. That must be why I saw so many people post about it!

      Yup, 6 days of running and super high mileage. :(

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  11. Running has taught me that marathons are humbling :( And 6 days a week of running killed me! But, like you said, don't stop making those goals and have dreams. You can't reach a goal unless you try! PS, I'm getting the Hanson half marathon book out from the library to see if I can hack it for Spring training! Will I never learn? haha I'm hoping it's half as hard.

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    1. LOL! Well hey, you can tweak it, right? I own the book but I won't EVERRRRRR use it. If you decide to buy it just tell me and I will send you mine. :)

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  12. I love your perspective about identity. For the past couple of weeks I've had a post sitting in my drafts about how much I love your outlook on running (which is similar to Adam's outlook on MMA. He's super dedicated to his sport but he never competes). I haven't had time to flesh it out but it's coming soon :).

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    1. I'm excited to hear more about Adam's MMA and how it fits into his life. And I am tickled that you like my perspective on running. Can't wait to read the post! :)

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  13. You kicked ass at everything you showed up for :) Love it!! and got to run with your Dad, which is super cool that Dad runs!! Paul healthy is wonderful :) A lot of good did happen when we look back. You are right about being many things! I guess I am other things as like wife, mom, but I admit I struggle to enjoy those other rolls unless I can have my own thing. I need those endorphins.
    I just wrote my year in review post too, and I think I will actually post the draft eventually lol

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    1. " I struggle to enjoy those other rolls unless I can have my own thing. " <--- This is such a good point! I definitely need my "me" time so I can BE a teacher and wife and all that other stuff. Running is my primary "me" time.

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  14. I think I'm still learning to trust my gut...Actually, no, that's not it. I trust my gut but often don't listen to it with regard to training. So that's what I need to work on next year!

    I had the SAME revelation about my running identify this week and am working on a post about it...same as Kristina, it seems! This must be in the water. But lately I've found I'm not running because it's who I am or what I need to be "me"...it's just running, something I enjoy, and I'm totally fine with that!

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    1. I can't wait to read your post and Kristina's!

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  15. I love your lessons learned... especially realizing that what might fit someone else doesn't have to fit me.

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    1. Yes, it seems like no matter how many times I learn that lessno, I need to learn it again every couple years!

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