I ran 7.5 miles today! Which is my first run over 7 miles since DECEMBER. I couldn’t believe this when I first skimmed through my training log, but I guess that calf injury + the IT band flare-up really did smother my Spring and Summer training more than I’d remembered.
Part of me is really frustrated by the fact that it’s been ¾ of a year since I ran over 7 miles. However, I have noticed that I’ve been more appreciative of my runs lately and, having taken a break from workouts or structured training beyond a general mileage goal/limit each week, have become better at just running for the pure joy of running rather than with a training goal in mind.
Thinking more deeply about the last few frustrating years I am starting to see them as worthwhile contributors to my running, which is definitely not something I could have said even last year. When I consider how differently I feel about running now versus during the last few frustrating seasons of collegiate competition I can see what a difference it has made to be forced to train and plan more casually over the last few years than during any previous running seasons. Viewed as a mental re-set this span of running is much less down heartening than when viewed, more negatively, as a physical pause-rewind-pause-rewind-pause, etc.
I am of course still hoping to move forward physically, but for now I can appreciate the mental benefits and focus on carrying my improved mentality forward with any physical advances.