don’t force it

Had a good easy long run today, with temperatures in the low 70’s and low humidity. A lot of people out on the downtown greenway enjoying an early fall Sunday afternoon. My easy pace training runs are ever so slowly getting faster. I’ll often hit a mid 7 minute mile pace on small downhills. I’ve learned to not lean back and brake during a downhill. Instead I try to increase my cadence to accommodate for the increase in speed, leaning back only when the hill is too steep.I’m finally starting to get in shape enough to be able to “listen to my body” as they say. Being aware of what kind of effort is needed, to be able to make plans and stick to them, but also to be adaptable enough when the circumstances change, it’s a good feeling. The more I work out, the more I’m getting the feel for it.

I had to hold back today. I’m still in a base building phase and don’t want to overdo it. Years of injury and bad “training” have made me overly cautious. I want to be faster and better, but I’ve got more patience now. So long term goals are more important. Blowing a workout because I want to impress some random stranger on the trails. Well, that’s the old me. Keeping the ego in check has been a valuable lesson. There’s a time and place for the ego and being competitive. It’s not during training runs. It’s for races. And even there, you have to keep it in check.

So, not forcing it is my mantra for the coming months and years. If I have the ability to get faster, it will come of its own accord with hard, consistent work. Forcing things only leads to disappointment, lackluster performance, injuries and burnout. Chasing highs and living as a bi-polar runner just isn’t my style.

cheers and happy running