Turns out that keeping a running blog together when you're not really running is tricky and it becomes quite the hindrance.
But as it turns out, I survived.
My legs have been back up an runnin' for just over 5 weeks now. Mileage hasn't been impressive when compared to the numbers I was putting in last year at this time, but that has become irrelevant. As it turns out, I seem to simultaneously be both my best and my worst encourager. I can push myself harder than I ever thought, then just not know when to stop. Seems that building myself up just as quickly as I can tear myself down is my achilles heel.
Right now I'm just getting back into a routine with the basics. 5 runs per week of easy mileage mainly without a watch, and making my best attempt to get some of the strength I've lost back through circuit training. Taking that time off was probably the best thing I've done for myself in a long while because it gave my body the chance to have a mini-reset. After months of struggling with my own mess, the legs are finally feeling like they are back to normal.
I learned a lot in 2012, most through my ugliest of moments (which there were plenty of...running and otherwise).
Racing is fun.It's taken me years to realize this, butt loads of lost race entry fees on races where my head just wasn't in the game, and plenty of self-induced heart ache for my mind to truly grasp this concept.
Racing is fun when I let it be fun.
When I don't let the outcome of the day define who I am,
when my training isn't the only thing I'm worried about,
and when I stop over thinking it and just get out there and move.
I can honestly say that even though I struck out at quite a few races last year, I never toed the line of a race wondering why I was there. I wanted to be at every single one of those starting lines, where most time I dance around like a fool trying to keep the anxious excitement I have to be moving under control.
The second racing stops being fun where I can't smile at the starting line, I know that I'm not out there for the right reasons and it's time to evaluate what the heck I'm doing.
Mileage notions and expectations are bogus.
The most important lesson I learned last year would hands down be that I can take mileage, and I can take intensity. But when I add those two together, it doesn't equal anything of quality and instead I just beat the crap out of myself.
That became pretty apparent when I finished 11 seconds off my 5k PR on no speed training, very little mileage, and a heart that was ecstatic to be racing again on Thanksgiving.
All those miles won't mean a damn thing if you can't get to the starting line healthy.
Being flexible and logical will most likely bring more successes than the bulk of a cycle.
Appearance means nada.
Looked the part last year...
and that didn't get me much further than the year before when I had more meat on my bones.
Right now I'm feeling very grateful to just be running and don't really feel like I need to set out a blue print of races I want to tackle and PR's that I'm going to hunt down in 2013. Instead I've decided to just move forward slowly and continue building my fitness back up. Don't really know what that means as of yet or where that will lead me, but for once in my life I'm not too concerned about the destination.
2013's plan as of right now...
is that there is no plan. AMEN. Hallelujah.
Just going to run. Plain and simple as that.