Back in High School and College I was the super obsessed, running is everything king of person. My life revolved around running. I started running just for fun, then I realized I has something to work off of, then the goal obsessed individual in me came out. In high school, it was everything for me to run in College. I was recruited and ended up attending Akron just because it was a rebuilding year, not too far away from home, and other runners that were good were going as well. Anyway, in College, I started off great. Not to get into any major details and write a novel, I got really sick during track season (after a kick butt 3000 meter run in Indy) and it was all down hill from then. I ended up with mono and numerous knee injuries. My life was pretty much over (I thought at the time) as I knew it. I still ended up with a fairly decent college career, but I never made it to NCAA's....sigh. My ultimate goal was to be an NCAA All American....sigh. We can't always get what we want.
Soooo....I got over all that and got a real life outside of running. O my gosh...there were real people, real food, and freedom from coaches, rules, miles, and no more crying over injuries. My life was not defined by my times anymore. I loved it. I swore I'd never get caught up in the miles and times ever again.....EVER. I never planned on racing competitively again. Actually, that thought of doing a workout or running a race made me want to puke.
Fast forward. I decided to run a marathon just for fun. I ran like 4 days (maybe 5) a week and 35-40 miles and entered Cleveland. I did a couple long runs and was ready to go. I ran a 3:34 and qualified for Boston. O what the hell....I decided to run Boston. Who knows what would happen in the future. So I did the whole winter training thing on the treadmill and was ready to run Boston off of 45 miles a week this time. It was 87 degrees that race and I ran like 3:54 or something. Barely finished because of the heat. Yuck....that was my last marathon for sure.
Fast forward again. About a year and a half later....I got bored and decided to train for a fall marathon. Columbus. Ran all summer and bumped up the miles to about 50-55. Toed the line and was ready to go. 3:09!!!! What?!? Well, we may have something here. That is where is all started again.
Somehow I ran a 3:09, then trained for Chicago (3:14), and Akron (3:06). I joined a local team and peaked out at almost 90 miles last summer. The year of Chicago was a tough one. I was injured all of Jan, Feb, & July, then sick for a week in August. This past year was a miracle. Not sick or injured and ran more miles then I thought my body could ever run. I thought I could keep it rolling.
I broke my own rules. If I'm not training for a marathon I run 5 days a week. Period. 2 Days cross training. Maybe the occasional 6 days training week. 40-45 Miles per week. Maybe the occasional 50. In December I decided since I had some time off to run more. Then I just kept on going and going. I kept telling myself I would take an easy week next week.
I've been sick like 3 times in the last 6 months, and this last time was pretty bad. I started running on the verge of a 50 miles week back then I did something to my heel. I can see where this path is going and I'm afraid to tread down it. I've been down this path over and over and over the past 10 years. I need to wake up and follow my own rules again.
Sometimes I get a bit caught up in the numbers, but I should know that my body works well with lower miles and higher intensity. Lots of cross training, maintenance, and the proper training cycles. It just felt good to run so much. I really love it. I don't really think it's the best training method for me, but I just loved the feeling. I mean, in college we ran no more then 50 miles per week...and we produced a couple All Americans off of that. Plus, I ran my best Half Marathon off of 45 miles per week. Though, my marathon PR was off the mega high mileage for me...so who knows. I'll need to find that happy medium....the optimal point on the curve.
I'm not the crazy, obsessed, running is life person I used to be....but I care very much for bettering myself in my sport. It does give me a feeling of value....but doesn't define me. I do need to remind myself of this from time to time....especially when things are not going how I planned.
I'm just in a deep thought process at the moment and just spelling it all out on paper.
I just want to be the runner I know I can be, but without all the stupid crap from doing stupid stuff. I'm just waiting for THAT moment to come (that magical" I accomplished everything possible and can quit running" moment). But...like my wise hubby said...that moment will probably never come if I don't think it came yet, because I'll always think I could do better no matter what I accomplish. Plus, I just love this sport. Everything will be a stepping stone to the next great thing.
Yeah....he's probably right. Shhh...don't tell him I said that.