Even though I haven’t brought this up for a while, thanks to everyone who shared suggestions for 5k training plans. I decided to stick with the one from Runner’s World, mostly because it is a six-week plan and at the time that I chose it, the 5k was seven weeks away (that was last week, just in case you’re keeping score for some perverse reason).
That means that this is the first week of training! It’s sort of interesting to be following a training plan for a distance I know I can already run. In the past, I have followed training plans for marathons–obviously, these are distances I can’t just get up any day and run, and it takes months of preparation. This, however, is very different, because a lot of my easy runs on this training plan are already over 3.1 miles. The point, of course, is not to finish, but to finish faster. My current 5k PR is 26:07ish, so I would like to come in somewhere in the neighborhood of 25:xx. Obviously, if I came in under 25 minutes, I wouldn’t complain! But I’m not going to hold my breath, either…
This week is a little bit wonky because of work and social (for once!) obligations. Yesterday was supposed to be a rest day, today is supposed to be speed intervals, but I won’t have time to run today so I did 4 easy miles yesterday, will take today as a rest day, and then rearrange the rest of the week to fit everything in. The 4 miles yesterday were awful! My legs felt like lead the whole time, and I never really fell into a steady rhythm. Somehow, I was running into the wind while running south, and again while running north. Once I left the park (and I guess the wall of trees that may have been blocking the wind, somewhat) the wind was so intense that I felt at times like I was standing still. I only run .3 or so miles from my apartment to the park, but it was enough. I felt like stopping and looking up at the sky–you know, because that’s where Mother Nature lives, obvs–and saying yelling, “OKAY! You win, I give up! You are stronger than I am!” Man, it was frustrating.
The thing is, though, that it seems like no matter how bad the run is, it is always better than *not running*. This week my body image issues seem to be out in full force (I guess they’re getting spring fever and don’t want to be cooped up anymore) and I feel like I was at least able to combat them somewhat by making the effort that I did. One thing I’ve noticed about myself is that when I feel like I’m not eating well or I haven’t worked out, I get a weird sensation that sort of feels like being dirty. Like I need a shower or something, to cleanse the feeling of inertia, or overindulgence (whether or not I’ve actually overindulged is another question altogether–this is mostly guilt from having what I feel is too much. It is entirely psychological). Running, eating well, and doing yoga help me maintain or regain that feeling of having a clean body. Unfortunately, the feeling didn’t dissipate entirely yesterday. I’m glad, though, that those four miles did help to diminish it somewhat. And I guess running can’t do it all–this is something that I have to control myself, without the help of any sort of crutch.