With apologies to Kenny Rogers, but sometimes you gotta know when to run ’em, know when to walk away.
Here are some instances when I struggle with not running:
- Cross Training. My running plan right now calls for four days of running with one rest day and a couple of cross-training days. Yeah, about that. The rest day is easy. It’s whatever day I just don’t have time to run or have a work or family commitment. It’s the non-running days when I just can’t make myself do what the plan calls for, whether it’s yoga or walking on the treadmill. I do it, but I don’t look forward to it and I certainly wish I were doing anything but. How do I get over it? I schedule it just like I do my runs and remind myself that it’s part of the plan.
- Injury. I am apparently injury-prone and accepting that I can’t always run the distance I had planned is a bit of a struggle. How do I get over it? I try to stick to my cross-training plan and make sure to schedule my appointments with Dr. Awesome for my manipulative medicine treatment.
- Friends’ plans. I do my long runs on Saturday mornings with a group of friends who are typically training for half, full or ultra marathons. It’s not unusual for me to plan a five- or six-mile run and end up doing, I don’t know, 10. This goes against the plan and probably increases my risk of injury. How do I get over it? This one’s a toughy. It’s so much more pleasant to run with my friends and I certainly want to support their goals. I’m still working on this one.
- Taper. Holy cow, no one warned me about tapering for my first half and I certainly suffered. While my closets were much more organized, I was a hot mess of nerves and energy. How do I get over it? I plan some fun activities that I don’t get to do when my mileage is at its peak, such as meeting up with friends for dinner, going to a movie at an actual theater without falling asleep and doing a bit of retail therapy.
It’s because I love running so much (translation: everything that surrounds running, such as my friends) that not doing it is the hardest part. It’s been a struggle to know when to take a step back to move forward, but I’ll just have to keep repeating my mantra “Trust the Plan” until I truly believe that it includes days without running to get me to the starting line in one piece.
How about you: What’s the hardest thing for you about running?