Monday! How quickly you sprang upon me! Oh, what a lovely and busy week I experienced! Much of my running took place inside due to the snow and lack of sidewalks in Fairfax, but Jamie and I managed to run together once or twice outside in the cold.
Saturday morning we ran fairly early because we both had busy days ahead of us. It was a milestone day for Jamie, who made it (running) all the way up a beastly hill for the first time! I am certainly not any fantastic or super experienced runner, but I remember the feeling of making it up my first big hill a few years back, one that I had always stopped to walk up. Before I knew it, it was just another (very large and steep) bump in the road! The small gains made every week, or sometimes daily, can be easily overlooked, but when noticed they are so encouraging. We also ran the farthest together to date, and continue to push the distance each time we run.
In general I’m a really positive person, but I am also a perfectionist and often tend to focus on what I’m doing poorly in my runs. This week I made it a point to look for my strengths, and then try to improve as a runner through study and encouragement. Something I do that’s really helpful and positive is to look for achievable goals. I structure unit plans the same way for students: make the ultimate goal very clear up front, and then take small steps to get there, each day building on a skill from the day before. It can feel very overwhelming to say, “okay, today I need to run fourteen miles,” (or today you’re reading a book, taking a test, and writing an essay!) especially when I’ve never run that distance before. When I’m out there at mile two, twelve more miles can seem terrifying and dreadful, and I’m tempted to stop sooner rather than later. But if I just say, “okay, I am going to run to the brick house,” and then once I get there, make a new goal of reaching the next street sign, it becomes more and more achievable and even fun. I’ve started to add in intervals as well, sprinting to one landmark every mile or so.
This weekend I will be in my hometown weeding through my father’s basement as we clean it out in preparation of selling. I am heartbroken that we have to say goodbye to our childhood home, and our parents in some ways, but I’m also excited to run my most favorite running route in the world (and for potentially the last time). I’m shooting for 15-16 miles this weekend. Wish me luck!
Here’s hoping for “real” spring weather and hearty runs…until next week, all!