Getting back into running after taking a few weeks off was harder, and easier, than I thought it would be. I ran twice this past week and it felt good to be back out there, stretching my legs out and flying along the streets.
On Thursday evening, I joined two friends for an 4-mile run along the lake. With the time change, it’s already dark out by the time I leave work, so it’s more enjoyable to run with friends at this time of year. I’m kind of afraid of the dark and imagine there is someone behind every tree waiting to steal me. Call it vigilance, or just chalk it up to my dad watching too many episodes of Unsolved Mysteries when I was a youngster, creating extreme paranoia. So, yeah, having people run in the dark with me is usually a must.
When I last ran, almost a month ago, it was still fairly warm and pleasant out. Thursday was a bit of a shock! It was on the colder side, about 45 degrees, and very windy. Brrr. My legs felt really good, but I guess after three weeks off, they are more than well rested. That was the easy part.
The hardest part was simply breathing. Maybe it was getting over bronchitis, maybe it was the cold air, maybe it was the fact that I was trying to keep up with two ladies who’s “easy” run is my “hard” run pace—but running those four miles hurt. I don’t know if I can say it hurt “in a good way,” but I suppose it was good, because it means I’m acclimating to new running weather: Winter.
I was a bit sore the next day, since I did push the effort pretty hard for those four miles, despite it being my first run back. Probably not the smartest thing to do, but ah, well.
On Friday night, I planned to get up Saturday morning to run. As the night drifted by, I began to wonder, Maybe I just want to sleep in tomorrow…
Luckily, I came across this inspiring article and it made me excited to run again. I set my alarm clock, got my beauty sleep, and then dragged my butt outta bed at 6:45 Saturday morning. I met up with my running club, which was pretty sparse as most everyone was running in a nearby race that morning. Luckily, there were a couple people I could run with, so it was a fun and enjoyable morning 4-miler! My legs were a bit sore from Thursday, but after a mile warm-up and some stretching, I felt good.
The weather was deceiving… If the boat slips weren’t all empty, you’d think it was sunny & warm out, wouldn’t you? Not at all! But, I did enjoy the sunshine, if not the strong wind off the lake.
I am running the Jingle Bell Run 5K (it supports the Arthritis Foundation) in a couple of weeks, so I’m going to map out some “training” to get me tuned up for a short race. I don’t love short races—I really don’t like running hard and fast, I prefer slower & steady. But, having a race to look forward to definitely helps me stay on track and get out to run regularly!
(That’s the hope, at least. ;))
Do you prefer 5Ks and short races, or longer?
What kind of runs or workouts do you do to prep for shorter races?