Week 3 so far has been a great mood booster. Mileage steadily increases, as do the fun, more nuanced workouts. A hectic schedule Wednesday kept me indoors most of the day, so my Fartlek run will have to wait until Saturday. Fartlek is a swedish term for “speed play,” or a training method that blends intervals of regular and fast paces to keep you on your toes (however, you should run heel-to-toe or midfoot during long distances so as not to cramp your calves).
Sunday I reached the farthest distance I have ever run - 6 miles! As some of you know, I was not a regular runner (or exerciser in general) before starting to run/walk this past April. So to feel my body carry me through 6 miles Sunday evening was a proud accomplishment. I ran at my usual, slow pace of 12:35 min/mile which allowed me to strongly complete my run without any fatigue during or after.
Then on Tuesday I reached a personal best for pacing - 4 miles at 11:35 min/mile! I admit this was too fast to try to maintain in longer distances, but it was purely accidental. I was more focused on finishing the run than paying attention to how fast I was going.
It’s been awhile since I’ve reached a personal best as quantifiable as ones you earn while training. It’s difficult to see where I’m besting a situation at work or in my relationships. Running has served as a symbol of my body’s potential to do things I never thought I’d be happy to do. I actually enjoy pushing the limits (in a safe way). I’m excited for the next workout and the one after that, partly because it’s a finite time carved out for me to fully expend all the strength I’ve built up over these last few weeks. And seeing my progress in such a short time span (still 13 weeks to go!) has inspired me to look for personal bests in other areas of my life as well.
There’s no app for being the best girlfriend or confidante, daughter or co-worker every day, but I’m more in tune with the space I’m filling on a daily basis. I feel more in control of the positive and more prepared to conquer challenges on a good day and weather them on a bad one. But lately (and I’m hesitant to say this) my days have been great. And I’m positive it has to do in part with my marathon training.