Half marathon training doesn’t officially start until January 31st (12 weeks before race day). However, I have been making an effort to find my running (read: jogging) legs again. My return to running has been slow to come and I am making a concerted effort to stop any self-bashing patterns before it shows up. Actually, it’s more than that; I am trying to not judge or compare my performance to anyone (even my old running self).
It’s easier said than done.
It took quite some time to get out the door to run today even though I was dressed and ready to go at least 30 minutes beforehand. Trying to psych myself up for the 3 miles I had planned, I tried to imagine myself running through the ‘hood with a sense of lightness and free from discomfort. I could see it — to some extent — I just couldn’t get my mind to believe it. So, I kept putting off leaving the house.
Out of excuses, I finally made my way outside. Before hitting the pavement, I did a couple planks and a few other core stabilizing exercises. This may not have been necessary but I wanted to convince my mind that I truly was ready to go. After each mile, I walked for 1 minute before starting again. I would have walked a bit sooner to let cars go ahead of me but the drivers all seemed to be extra accommodating today. This even cut one of my walk breaks short as I didn’t want to hold anyone up for me to walk across the street. However, in this final mile, I broke down a walked several times in that mile.
In the end, my splits actually look better than I thought they would [Mile 1 (11:37); Mile 2 (13:05); Mile 3 (12:08)] — which reinforces the approach of practicing non-judgement when it comes to my journey back to running regularly.