I was really good about following the plan Mark worked so hard on for me for 2 weeks. Last week, I knew just getting out to run was a victory, so I didn’t attempt 10 miles of loops around my house. So there goes one week of being plan free. This week it is very tempting to remain plan free. I did the required 8 Monday, and today instead of 4 fast, painful miles, I ran 6 leisurely, easy miles. I know….naughty me. Didn’t I say I wanted to run a PR, and I needed to do something different? Here’s the facts: running longer than 8 miles before work is hard for me time-wise. It means I need to get out the door really, really early. I like doing easy little 6 mile runs. 4 painful miles isn’t as fun. So yes, I am torn between just making running enjoyable and possibly not progressing, and getting out of my comfort zone and trying to change it up to see some improvement. I felt better when I saw Mark on Sunday and found out he was being bad too. He hadn’t been following his own plan at all. Long runs are really easy for both of us to follow a plan on, it’s just the other stuff…and it is looking like I may have up to 3 weeks in August of doing loops around my block, so the plan goes out the window for that.
I would guess that most non-elite runners do it for the enjoyment of it, and not so much to be competitive. Isn’t just about every runner’s favorite run a leisurely, mid distance run somewhere pretty on a day with great weather? Yeah, I would rather do that than painful mile repeats.
So, time will tell how I will do with this whole structure thing. I really appreciate Mark working it all out for me, so I try to at least use it as a guideline. But, like most of my runner friends who read this, my life is busy. It can be stressful. Some days I just want to use my run as an escape and enjoy it…and that’s completely ok.