Yesterday was Monday. Usually a rest day for me. But since I was working a fairly tough gig in Toronto all weekend and my legs and feet were just so tired, I had to pass up my usual Sunday long run. Instead Anita and I made an unusual plan, and that was to run for two hours on Monday after work.
After work arrived (well, we kicked off a bit early to get the run in) and it was raining. And cold. And the wind started to pick up. These conditions could sometimes mess with me and make me start rationalizing my way to skipping the workout.
But having made a plan (one of my best winning strategies is to make a plan with someone to meet for a workout) and also wanting to catch up (Anita was out of town for awhile and we hadn’t really chatted in over a week) secured my commitment. Deciding in advance that we would run at an easy, chatty pace made the two hour commitment more approachable.
We decided on our route and off we went. Anita said at the beginning that the time would fly. And it actually did. And so did we. Both of us ran strong and felt amazing. We have been agonizing a bit over our upcoming half marathon. We’ve been training differently and have slightly different goals (Anita wants to do 10-1 intervals and I want to try running continuous but we both would like to cross the finish line at 2:25.
But today we both had an amazing run, despite the cold and the wet and the wind. In some ways, it was just perfect running weather. The rain stopped by the time we had changed into our gear, and it never resumed. The wind was cold, but not so terrible that we wished for more clothing than we’d chosen (capris and long sleeved t-shirts).
We ended up out for 2 hours and 11 minutes and we came in the last stretch at a tempo pace (the whole run was not at a tempo pace, but it feels good to lay it out at the end). We checked in with each other regularly about how we felt and we both kept remarking, almost not quite believing, just how fabulous the run felt.
The only tough part came right near the end. There is a gradual yet brutal hill out of the park heading back to Anita’s place. It looks almost like nothing. But it goes on FOREVER. Since we were already over our two hours, we agreed we would run to the end of that tough bit and then take a short walk break, then run the rest of the way home.
I’ve entitled this post “have you ever regretted having done a workout?” I like this question because my answer to it is an unequivocal, “no I have not.” And sometimes this one certainty is enough to get me doing a workout that I don’t want to do. The other morning I was messaging Cate and Christine about wanting to stay in bed. We are all quite supportive of whatever decisions each of us makes, recognizing too that rest is an essential part of a balanced workout strategy and not something we’re great at. But then when I said maybe I’ll go for a short one, Cate reminded me quite rightly that I would feel better.
Out the door I went. I was in Toronto and it’s especially refreshing to go running somewhere that’s not my usual turf. And guess what, within minutes of feeling the pavement under my feet, I did feel better. And by the time I got back to my hotel room, I felt positively amazing. I mean, the run was energizing for sure. So I felt literally better. But like I said, I never regret having completed a workout. I’m always happier for it.
Under the usual conditions (that is, assuming I don’t get injured because of the workout), there is no downside to getting that workout done. And often, it’s not just about having done it. As today’s run with Anita attests, there are those times when its awesomeness presents itself while it’s happening. The end isn’t always the best part of it!
Have you ever regretted having done a workout?