If I had to pick one form of exercise to do for the rest of my life, it would be running.
I really enjoy running.
I do other forms of exercise — I lift fairly consistently, I use the elliptical, I like spin classes and I still swim sporadically.
But I love running the most, and if I was forced to choose one type of physical activity for all of eternity, that would be my pick.
It wasn’t always like this.
I wasn’t a runner when I was younger (I was a swimmer) and I’m not particularly fast.
I didn’t really start running consistently until after I was done having kids. When I was about 43.
And six or seven years ago when I first started running, it was torturous.
I did not enjoy it back then. Every minute was painful, and it took me a long time before I could run comfortably for an extended period of time (like more than a mile) without feeling like I was going to die.
The last couple months I kind of fell off the running wagon.
And in November and December I really want to log some serious running miles.
I set a goal of 100 miles in the month of November.
I also registered for a Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving. That will help me to stay on track.
So this week I focused on running, and my goal was to run every day.
I almost did it — Monday was a little bit out of control with stuff to do, so I didn’t fit a run in then.
But I did on the other six days!
Here’s what my runs looked like…
Every day I started with the same route, and then I added a tiny bit onto it.
On Sunday I ran 2.01 miles and my pace was 11:18/mile. I had planned on doing at least three miles that day but I was dying. So I only did two.
On Tuesday I ran 3.11 miles and averaged 10:52/mile.
On Wednesday I ran 3.2 miles and averaged 10:46/mile.
On Thursday I ran 3.42 miles and average 10:45/mile.
On Friday I ran 3.55 miles and averaged 10:29/mile.
And then there was today.
Today we left for swim practice at 8 am and didn’t get home until 2pm. I was so tired.
Like having-trouble-staying-awake-driving-home-from-practice tired. And it’s been cold here in CT the past couple days, and I did not want to be outside. At all.
I had already decided in my head that I was going to take a nap when I got home, and then I’d go for a run.
But I am not an afternoon exercising kind of girl. I hate having it hanging over my head. And I knew there was a pretty good chance that I’d sleep until it was dark and then the run wouldn’t happen.
So I did what I do when I really, really REALLY don’t want to work out. (Today was one of those days).
I tethered to my Future Self.
I thought about Future Susie.
How will Future Susie feel if you don’t go for a run?
I knew I would be disappointed.
And I didn’t want to feel disappointed tonight.
So I sucked it up and I did it.
And I wanted it to be done so badly that I pushed myself. Because at the end of the running finish line today was a hot shower and pajamas.
And I really wanted a hot shower. And I also really wanted to be in my pajamas.
And you know what?
Today was my longest and fastest run of the week!
I did 3.65 miles and averaged 10:23 per mile!
And while the running part may not have felt totally amazing, you know what did feel amazing?
And knowing I sucked it up and did something I didn’t want to do.
And this is what that feeling looks like!
Super happy and super proud of myself.
Here are my weekly totals:
I ran 18.98 miles.
The fact that I’m two hundredths from 19 miles kind of bugs me.
But that’s okay.
Next week I’ll be over twenty miles. I’m going for 25.
I’ll let you know next Saturday how my week goes.
Until then, if you are struggling to get your butt up off the couch, think about Future You.
How do you want Future You to feel at the end of the day?
Do you want her (or him) to feel proud and productive and badass?
Or do you want to feel full of regret?
When that Gremlin on your shoulder is helping you justify seven ways to Sunday why you should blow off moving your butt, think about your Future Self.
And tell the stupid Gremlin to f*ck off.