Running is not a chore

The second week of training was a slight improvement over the first week, but a solid reminder that I have a long way to go get in shape. Total distance for the week was 13.7 miles. I also decided that I would do 4 runs a week to make it easier to establish a regular routine. Previously I would rarely run two days in a row and opted for every second day but this makes for a messier schedule. However, my plan to run four days didn’t happen in week three and my weekly mileage decreased to just over ten miles.

On non-running days I did yoga, stretching and brisk walking, but these activities are a bit boring, so I need to replace them with something more interesting. I am just not sure what at this point.  Actually, exercise seems like a chore sometimes, something that I don’t want to do but have to do – not exactly  the way I should be feeling after less than a month into 2017. On a positive note, there is snow in the forecast, so I am looking forward to some cross-country skiing this week.

Off to a good start

The first week of 2017 is in the books. I was able to stick to my exercise plan in spite of some cold, wintry weather. I began the year with a 8-mile (about 12 km) cross-country ski excursion on New Year’s Day. It only takes me five minutes on foot to access the off-road trail that travels across New Brunswick. The trail is used by snowmobilers in the winter and ATVs in the other months. It is a great place to bike, run and walk in the summer and a perfect place for cross-country skiing in the winter.

After a longer than expected journey on Sunday, I had sore muscles (especially my upper body – the ones that don’t get a workout from running) and I really wanted to skip training on Monday, but decided that this would not be a good start to the new year. I managed a mere 2.3 miles in 35 minutes. I used Tuesday as a rest day to recover from  skiing. I went to bed early thinking about running. On Wednesday I got up at six and did a 3-mile session (36:31) before breakfast. The next day I did an early morning yoga workout and then shovelled snow for two hours. Yesterday, I did another 3-mile run (35:41), followed by 30 minutes of stretching. I ended the week with an easy  6-mile trek on the trails this afternoon.

Three Simple Running Goals for 2017

This past year running took a backseat to work and life in general. Some days I was focused and motivated to exercise, but other days I found a million excuses not to workout. Luckily, my jobs involved a lot of physical labour and my weight remained constant in spite of not following a regular exercise program. I completely ignored this blog and rarely tracked my running distance or progress. I didn’t sign up for any events which also contributed to my limited interest in running.

This year I am taking a new approach to training and exercise. I would like to enjoy running while incorporating some specific goals for 2017. My first goal is to run a distance of 5 miles (8km) without walking breaks. Now, I am able to run 5K. However, after a year of limited training I am extremely slow. I am like a snail, so time goals at this point would lead me down the path to complete failure. This must be avoided! Thus, I am going to concentrate on building up endurance and when I can cover 5 miles I might consider incorporating some speed-training.

My second goal is to enter two 10K races this year. At this point, I have no idea when or where – to be decided in the near future.

My third goal is to actively track my progress via this blog. My intention is to post my running data and thoughts at least twice a month. I did my last run of 2016 this morning – a slow, comfortable  3 miles in 36:31 – this will be my starting point for 2017.

These three simple running goals are intended to help me stay motivated and focused on running. In order to achieve these goals I have to be extremely dedicated, unwavering and prepared to make running play an important part of my life by setting aside enough time for consistent and quality training in 2017.