15 years ago, I stepped on a treadmill in an effort to combat postpartum depression. I had run as exercise off and on over the years, but I’d never considered myself a runner. Once I realized that running helped me cope with my emotional state and a challenging newborn, running became a regular part of my life. Slowly but surely, I began to think of myself as a runner.
15 years later, I’ve gone from a 30 minute run a few times a week to a steady runner. While I have my lower mileage months, I regularly run 100+ miles a month. And every time I think, I got this running thing pegged, I learn something new.
So, what did I learn about running in 2016?
- I learned that a strong base will carry me farther than a few long runs will. Regularly running half marathons has built my base to a point that I only need to add a few longer runs to prepare to run a full marathon. (Note that I’m not saying this allows me to race a marathon. It allows me to run one and have fun and not get injured.)
- I will never be a hot weather runner. Years of trying and failing are starting to sink in. This may or may not prevent me from running Marine Corps Marathon in the future.
- I don’t enjoy training past the 15 mile point. After that, it’s just not fun any more. Probably a good thing I no longer think that 20 mile runs are necessary.
- Sometimes it’s good to shake things up. I did a lot of half marathons this year + MCM. I need a short break. (I may have signed up for 5 shorter races with a local race company on a whim…)
- 5-6 days a week of running is my sweet spot. My legs prefer to run often. Running often makes me happy. Win/win. Now if I can just figure out how to add in some strength training to help prevent injury.
2016 was a good running year for me. 2017 may be better, but it may not. It will definitely be different and I’m sure I’ll learn something new then as well.