This month we are supposed to talk about our day-to-day running routine. I could talk about this for hours. I’ve toyed with my routine a lot since moving to El Paso, and I think I’ve figured out what works for me. I’ve definitely learned a lot anyway.
Morning or Night? I am strictly a morning runner. When I first moved to El Paso, I tried running in the afternoon/evenings because it was easier with my schedule. I’m not saying I didn’t have any good runs, because there were a few, but I was mostly tired and grumpy and just not feeling it. There were a lot of runs that just didn’t happen because “eh, I don’t want to.” When the weather warmed up I switched back to mornings. It’s so much better. If I am not out the door and running by 10am (at the latest) it’s probably not going to happen that day. I’m okay with that because I would rather rearrange my running schedule for the week than force a shitty run later in the day. Shitty runs will make me grumpier in the long run than a missed or rescheduled run will.
Music or Silence? Depends on my mood. Before moving to El Paso I never listened to music. Then when I moved here I picked up the habit again to help get me through the rough times (or hills). Now, I put on my headphones on the days that it takes a little something extra to get out the door. Assuming my iPod is charged. My friend, Amy, suggested listening to Podcasts. I actually really liked that. There is one, Everyday Runner’s, that are really good.
Training Plans? I love a good training plan. I love being able to cross the run off my calendar and visible proof I am one run closer to race day. The training plan I use varies depending on my goals. When my goals are to build a base, I tend to like Runner’s World Smart Coach. When my goal is to train for a race, I am starting to like the Run Less Run Faster plan. This is the plan I am going to use for my upcoming half marathon. In a new twist, however, lately I have been very lax about my training plan. I improvise when needed and feel no discomfort at all when I need to modify it. The old me was so rigid about it, I would have anxiety about not running exactly what the plan said to do. I’m not sure if this means that I am becoming less OCD/anal about things, or if I am smart enough about training plans and I know my body well enough to know what it needs and what I can do. Either way, it’s a nice change.
Solo or Group Runs? This has probably been the most drastic change since moving to El Paso. Up until recently, I was a solo runner. Not because I had something against running with others, I just didn’t live near a friend who ran the same kinds of distances and paces I do. Also, I’m a big scaredy cat and have always been too intimidated to join a running club. So I ran alone. Spending my runs solving the worlds problems and over thinking my own. Then I moved to El Paso where I met Amy in real life (we had been blog buddies for a while). We have similar running goals and run at very similar paces. Match.com couldn’t have done a better job finding me a running partner. We started doing easy runs together during the week . Then we found the Wear Blue: Run to Remember group at Fort Bliss. Now I am part of a running group! I do long runs with other people! Y’all. Seriously. This has been the most eye-opening experience! While I still enjoy my solo runs during the week, I very much look forward to the group runs on the weekend. Running with people who share my passion and excitement for running just makes me more passionate and excited about it. When it comes time for us to leave Fort Bliss, I know I will miss these people the most.
Crosstraining? Ummmm. I want to cross train. I really do. I really suck at this thing called balance. When running is my focus because I am training for a specific race, everything else seems to fall by the way side. So, yes, I cross train, but not with the consistency I would like. I try to do yoga once a week. My goal for this upcoming training cycle is to yoga once per week and do a spin class once per week and do at least one circuit/crossfit type workout per week.
So there you have it. That’s what my day-to-day training looks like.
Do you like to work out alone or in a group? Fitness classes at the gym count too!