Despite a few high points (Center of the Nation series, Runner’s World Half and Festival weekend, and surviving the Marine Corps Marathon), I’ve had a rough fall when it comes to running. It took me almost two full months to recover from bronchitis and be able to breathe completely normally on a run again. Meanwhile, I was struggling with some issues in with my right hip. The hardest part of that was the pain was in a slightly different place each time I ran, so I had a hard time pinpointing the issue. So, I shut down my running for about 3 weeks. I joined a gym and worked with a trainer and set my running aside.
But I’ll confess: running is my first love. I’ll do other workouts to support my running, but I only do it because I need to. I never wake up in the morning and think “I’d really love to spend an hour on the elliptical” or “I can’t WAIT to workout with my trainer.” NEVER. Thankfully, my run has returned to me.
Because my hip had stopped hurting, but my legs were still hating every run, I decided to do the Runner’s World Run Streak from Thanksgiving until January. I know that seems counterintuitive, but somehow running every day has once again helped me fall in love with running again and made my legs happy to run.
- Low pressure – I’m not training for anything, so I don’t care how many of the days I run just a mile and I don’t care how fast I run it. I just have to do it.
- Rainbows and unicorns – The thing about running every day is that EVERY DAY you have a chance to have that run. You know what I mean – that run where you don’t want to stop. I went out for a 1 mile run last Friday and just did not want to stop. I finally forced myself to stop at mile 7.
- Accountability – When it comes down to it, I’m lazy. I’d much rather sit on the couch with coffee and a good book than get a workout in. Having to run a mile at least gets my blood pumping for a short while (and while I’ll admit that occasionally that’s all I do, most of the time I either keep running or I combine the mile with a trip to the gym.)
- It helps me make healthy choices – It’s a busy time of year. It would be really easy to get wrapped up in all that we have going on and just “forget” to work out. I’ve found that since I’m having to plan a mile (or more) every day, I’m also being more thoughtful about my eating and doing a better job of remembering to hydrate. If nothing else, it’s 10 minutes a day where *my health* is my priority and as a mom, it’s easy to make everyone and everything else a priority.
- There’s an end in sight – I know that seems odd given that I just talked about how awesome it is, but I am not someone who should streak long term. I’m afraid that I would get so attached to keeping it going that I would make some poor choices and run when I shouldn’t.
Do you streak? I’m happy with the annual Runner’s World streak, but I doubt you’ll ever see me making it a lifestyle choice. And if you want to start streaking, here are some tips to do it safely!