I haven’t written one of these in a long time. So far, 2020 in my running world has been less than stellar. First I wasn’t getting in quality runs because of my schedule and then COVID-19 came along. To say that most runs have been a struggle would be an understatement. But then today came along – while the uphills were tough – there were times when i felt like my old self again. I’m hoping that as things continue, I can get stronger – even without trips to the gym – but the quote above really sums up this morning.
It is December 31 and time for several end-of-year posts. First up is a running update. This year I averaged 74 miles per month. The lowest amount of miles in any month was January with just 23. June tops the highest mileage month with 101 miles. What is rare is that I only had 1 100+ mile month. Normally, May through October are all over 100 miles.
For 2020, I am aiming for 1,000+ miles this next year and hope to average 80 miles or more a month. So that about wraps it up for the year. But I continue to Press On!
Thanksgiving has come and gone and so that means so has most of November. Today is the last day of the month, so instead of a weekly running update, which I really haven’t done in November, I’ll give you a monthly summary.
Today I got back on the track. The last time I was there was last Saturday. We had a community thanksgiving service on Sunday and I was in my dress shoes all day and developed some kind of blister on the bottom of my right foot. I wasn’t able to run until Thursday, but the Y was closed. Yesterday Pam and I walked together and today I decided I better do 5 miles.
The early part of the run reminded me of the Christmas cartoon with the song “Put One Foot In Front of the Other.”
As the run progressed, it got much better. That run brought me to 78 miles for November which happens to be the monthly average for the year. With one month left in the year – at my current average, I will end up at 925 miles for the month – anything above that will be gravy. My goal was 1,254 miles or 2,019 KM. I will fall short of those goals. But it was good to be moving again – way too much thanksgiving food. And now – we keep pressing on!
Today is the halfway point of the month and I am at 43 miles. Not the greatest effort, but compared to the last couple of months, I’m happy with my progress. This was one of my better running weeks of late, although all my runs were inside, but at least they were on an indoor track and not the treadmill.
When we got to the Y today, I really wasn’t in the mood to run, but I did anyway and was determined to do six miles once I started. It wasn’t the fastest run, but it was a run and when I was done I felt good about it.
In running circles, we say that you never regret the runs you went out on, but you will almost always regret the runs you didn’t do.
Hopefully I can finish near the 80 mile mark for the month. I’d like to be a little higher, but it’s tough without getting 4 mile walks in on the off days. However I am reminded of Paul’s words about living this Christian life, which is much like the discipline of running.
26 So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.1 Corinthians 9:26-27 | New Living Translation (NLT)
Press ON! Run with Purpose
I’ve used this before, but it is very true. It looks like November picked up right were October finished. I was able to get a run in on Tuesday and a short one on Thursday, but because we had a men’s breakfast this morning, I decided to make it a quick walk. So far my mileage is not very good for the month, but I will see what I can do as it progresses. I would imagine, I will finish somewhere between 800 and 1,000 miles this year which is well short of my goal.
The bright spot in the week, is that short fast run on Thursday – almost clocked in at a 10:30 mile pace for four miles. I feel good about that – but I do continue to PRESS ON!
All I can say is this week went much better than last. 16 miles better – that’s because last week was a zero mile week. I have struggled through October, which is strange because normally October is a good month for me. I got in a five miler on Monday and four miles on Tuesday on the track at the Y – 11.5 laps to the miles. It was raining and chilly so I preferred to stay inside.
My original plan was to just go six this morning, but I decided at the last minute to go seven. It was a good run – nothing spectacular. It was mainly overcast and chilly, but on a long run you tend to warm up. I started with gloves but took them off about mile three. I’m hoping to do at least the same amount of miles this coming week.
But for now I keep Pressing On!
For the most part my running week was sort of meh! Even though I have not been getting the kind of regular mileage I’ve wanted, I have been able to extend my long runs and I like what my long runs are doing for me.
For example, yesterday I went out for a short run of 4 miles. What was great about it is that all the miles were under an 11 minute mile and the overall pace was a 10:36. Which all things considered is pretty good of late.
It seems like I can get out for a long run every other week and today I was able to get out for a 10 miler. If completed, it would be my longest run of the year. I am happy to say I did complete it. My overall pace for 10 miles was an 11:40 – so you can see my fast run was about a minute per mile faster than my slow run and that is a good benchmark. So I was happy to complete 10 miles and hope to extend it out to 13 over the next couple of weeks.
Today’s run was also significant in that I saw a lot of wildlife; chipmunks, squirrels – black, grey and brown. I ran past a family of deer – well more than a family more like herd. It was foggy this morning, so I think that’s why more wildlife was out. But it was a gorgeous foggy morning to run. So much fun even though the last mile was more like torture. That’s something I have experienced over the last few weeks – no matter what – the last mile is tough.
That about wraps it up – my schedule looks good for this week, so I should be able to get some quality mileage in. So I do keep pressing on!
This past week, was in between when it comes to running. I was able to get in three quality runs – two six milers on Tuesday and Thursday and was able to run my longest distance of the season yesterday – 9 miles. I remember a time when a nine miler was my usual long run. Running nine miles on a long run was always my goal because it seemed to make the short runs feel better. I’m hoping to continue to expand my long run until the weather gets colder, which they way the leaves are already changing color and falling, it might be sooner rather than later.
I wish my schedule would allow me to get out on a regular basis. As you can tell I’m writing this on a Sunday morning – yesterday was busy and by the time I got done, I was too tired to write. I got in 21 miles for the first week of September – nothing spectacular but 21 miles is 21 miles.
The long run was interesting yesterday. Through 7 and 1/2 miles everything felt really good, but that last mile and 1/2, it was tough, but I pushed through – I had no intentions of quitting. It’s something that I need to regain – that sense of perseverance – that sense of pressing on. It was rewarding to finish even when everything hurt. Hopefully we do 10 next week, but for now we PRESS ON!
After a couple of pretty frustrating weeks on the running front, I was able to have a decent week. I put up 26 miles – most of them running miles. August has been a bit of a frustration. I’ve not been able to establish a good running pattern. Two weeks ago I was able to up up 21 miles, but last week was paltry. One of the highlights this week was this morning’s 8 miler.
Here in NW Pennsylvania, we have something known as dendritic fog. The word dendritic means vein-like. NW PA (especially this time of year) has many fog-filled river valleys. When viewed from a satellite, they look like tiny veins. This morning was one of those mornings we had a dendritic fog. It always burns off by 9 or 10. At 7:30, we had quite the fog bank, but by 9, the fog was clearing off.
About three miles into the run, I took off my shirt – it was about 55 degrees, but I was sweating. About twenty minutes later I passed a female runner in all long sleeves and pants. She looked at me like a was crazy and asked, “Cold?” I said, “no.”
The run went well until mile 6. My pace was almost the same as my faster/shorter runs this week, and I told myself not to push it. Miles 7 and 8 were tough, but I kept pressing through and made it the full 8 miles. It’s probably only the second time I’ve run that far this year and I used to run 8 miles all the time. I’m hoping to extend it out another mile next week, because I know long runs help your over all pace and I have been missing them.
I have 59 miles for the month and with some success, I could be close to 90 for August. I would be happy with that, but to get to 1,000 miles for the year, I’m going to have to work hard in the fall and early winter. But for now, I keep PRESSING ON!
I’m going to have to use this song as inspiration this next week. To be sure, I have been knocked down. I only scored a 4 mile run on Monday and a 4 mile walk Friday. Yuk! But Monday is coming and it will be a new week. Even though I’m down – I am Pressing On!