Confession: For the first time in a very, very long time – like, as far back as I can remember this season – running has not been a priority of mine. Get a job? Yea, that’s up there. Hang with the family? Stop ignoring my friends? Yep — those are priorities too.
Fortunately, the lull lasted just a short – and reasonable – two weeks. As of Monday morning, I can officially say that I am back and better than ever.
Well, kind of.
Why the change of heart? It’s not the excess latkes.
(Latkes look even tastier when Instagram-ed next to apple sauce.)
Or the excess holiday sweets.
(My mom and I had this debate the other night. What is red velvet, anyway? We’re very intellectual.)
This year – the year of the four half marathons – was arguably different from my last six years of running.
Flashback to college and my first two years living in Manhattan.
I used to run pretty much every day of the week, covering between three and five miles without an impending race, for no reason at all. I amped up this distance during the summer of 2011. The result: strange new pains and a strong understanding of my limitations — and four race bibs to show for it.
(If you’re thinking I can’t count, it’s because Noah’s are up there too. Except his are for, like, marathons and stuff. Show off.)
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved every half marathon I participated in for a different reason. But now, I’m ready to return to a more moderate mindset. Not for good, but for a while. And most importantly of all, I’ve accepted this settled state of mind.
Monday morning, I woke up with the itch. I needed to run, and I wanted to log five miles — my standard morning mileage.
New York City was unseasonably warm on Monday morning, and by the time I left my apartment in just leggings and a long-sleeve thermal shirt, the air was already rising into the 50’s. Within a few blocks, I was rolling up my sleeves. At one point, I even considered removing my thermal and running in just a tank top, but decided to just deal with the heat. It’s December, after all. There’s no reason to give my body a reason to get sick again (re: yesterday’s blog).
Monday morning, I finished my first lap of Central Park’s lower loop in more than two weeks – and holy crap, was I happy to be there. While I don’t have photo evidence of my excursion (opting for a rare hands-free run on the foggy, misty morning), suffice it to say that Central Park was as perfect as ever, the residual fall leaves, damp and strewn on the pavement.
- What type of runner are you right now: a runner in training for a race or a runner who’s just happy to get out there without a watch or intention?