on taking flight

I woke up Thursday morning with a plan to run 10 miles. The night before I was excited, looking forward to it, ready. I had taken it easy the day before, only running two miles and sticking to strength stuff. My legs were fresh and I wanted to bang out 10 good ones before getting on with my day.

And then I woke up and absolutely did not want to run. I was not having my 6am alarm. I was not having the whole “it’s dark outside” thing. My feet were cold. I was really, really tired.

I got up. Stumbled to put on the hot water. Went to the New York Times. Checked my email, sipped my coffee. I was now dreading the run, trying to figure out if it was raining, wondering if my Garmin was charged, or if I even had a clean sports bra. And then I realized – Laur – you don’t have to run. If you don’t feel like running, just go back to bed.

One of my initial goals when I started writing in my BIA training journal was to stop being so hard on myself. I quickly get excited about a lot of things and make grandiose plans in my mind; since I don’t have a running coach, or any real set schedule, I kind of make up workouts in my mind the night before and try to stick to them. (For ie, why I wanted to run ten miles instead of seven or eight, I have no clue.)  Some people need others to stay accountable, yet I think my strictest coach is myself. (Where’s the #gowiththeflow Joc, Molly, Corey ?!) 

 So rather than running, I wrote. I wrote in my journal what I was feeling, and why I didn’t want to run, and explaining why it was totally fine — that I could run tomorrow if my head was in it, if my heart was in it. I took a peek at my journal to see what my training had been that week (I have never logged my workout schedule, so this was the first time I was seeing it all on paper) and could muse why I was feeling shot. Since peak training for Wineglass, I had fallen off the strength training train. I went back on it this week, but hadn’t realized I lifted three times in six days. Was that the culprit for my tired body and worn out head? Maybe. Who knows. Either way, I took off Thursday and enjoyed the rest. I told myself if I woke up on Friday and felt up to it, I’d try again.

On Thursday night I got a record of 9 1/2 hours of sleep, and when my alarm went off, I felt like my normal self. I jumped out of bed, did the whole coffee thing, had a small breakfast, and most importantly, was looking forward to running. I told myself I’d head over the bridge and go down the East Side Highway. If I felt great, I’d go five miles before turning around. If I wasn’t, I’d turn around whenever I felt like it. No big.

Luckily, and most likely because I had taken the prior day off, I felt wonderful. I was running slightly under sub 8 pace, which felt really comfortable. I ran over the Williamsburg bridge, downtown, through South Street Seaport, and to South Ferry. That was about five miles. I said hello to all the Staten Island commuters, and headed back. By mile seven, I was getting a bit tired at the pace I was at, but told myself, “self! Pushing a bit now will only make you stronger.” “It’s OK to go outside your comfort zone.” (Another goal I had made.) I was FULL of mantras at this point, but my favorite was probably, “You can slow down in a little bit. Just not right now.”

Long story not-too-short, I finished the 10 miles with an avg 7:59 pace, felt strong, and loved pretty much every step I took. As I wrote in my journal, “I ran this morning because I wanted to and my heart was in it.”


So thank you Believe I Am for reminding me it’s okay to slow down, that rest is so important, and if I don’t feel like running, I absolutely do not need to. I should just listen to my body and my head.

And when I am willing, I will take flight. 

About Laura

marketing director at Possible. formerly at Greatist. Still running, finding zen, and searching for the perfect bloody mary.

Posted on October 14, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. I knew there was a reason I made you my Cow Harbor running sherpa.

    Love this post. It reminds me to go with the flow more often than being a slave to my schedule, which this type-A frequently does. Going to write a little reminder to myself in my journal to do that.

  2. Loved this. I’m a big believer in the power of journaling….I use my runner’s journal for this all the time…especially when I’m in serious training. Such a tool for reflection and growth in our training.

    • this is new to me (for running) and it’s already been fantastic. It really is awesome to see all your hard work on paper…makes everything seem more tangible/real!

  3. Hello fellow BIA journalist! Glad to hear the journal is working out for you! It is definitely nice having a record of workouts for exactly your experience, figuring out why you might be having an ‘off’ feeling day.

    Can’t wait to see how you progress over the next few months! #sistersinsport

  4. how many races/months does the journal hold? yall have all been talking about it and now i NEED one 🙂 guessing still no luck with the race this weekend? train? i’ll pay for your room? yes, yes? :):) and you fish too?

    • i will double check when I get home but I know there is A LOT of space in there for races/calendars. and yea..no luck on the race 😦 So sad.

      aaand I do fish. Kind of. You should teach me your ways!

  5. 9 1/2 hours of sleep? And 10 miles at 7:59 pace? Teach me your ways.

  6. So, if I wasn’t convinced before, now I am REALLY convinced. I NEED one of these journals 🙂

    • they really are awesome! And that way you can write down all those more-than-well-deserved rest days after your 70.3!!!

  7. I found you through Runninghood, and I’m sad I haven’t been reading your blog sooner. I love all of the self-talk you write about. I have a whole lot of that happening on early mornings and especially during runs. Sometimes I even call myself “baby” and I can’t help it. It’s super weird and I wish I could stop. “Baby, don’t stop! You got this!” Not sure why there is a creepy old man living in my head. Anyway, LOVE the blog!

    • Hahhah best comment ever. Personally, I am a fan of using the word “darling”…aka “Darlin’, you got this!”

      Are these the things we’re supposed to keep in our heads? 🙂

      Anyways, thank you SO much for the kind words about the blog, and I cannot wait to explore yours!

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