The Quiet Runner,

Hannah. 20. Los Angeles. c25k grad turned 26.2 hopeful.
Bouncing back from injury and starting at the bottom.
Becoming a runner, one run at a time.

New Level of Runner’s High

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Tonight I ran four miles - the longest since February.  Not only did I do the distance, but I’m pretty proud of those splits.  I went out calmly, knowing I had a long way to cover, but still you can see in the second mile I started to panic a little bit about how much further I had to go and pulled back too hard.  I was prepared for the third mile to be tough, but I was determined to keep a strong momentum and got myself back on track pretty effectively. 

Somewhere in the third and fourth mile I found something in me that I don’t think I’ve ever felt before.  My mind and body became a machine with a stone cold, certain determination.  I felt the tiredness in my legs, but it was sort of something exterior to me.  Every part of me was just running. I knew that mile would probably be the fastest, but 11:52 is really fast for me, especially in a long run. 

Feeling the way my body settled into the run really makes me think that I should start paying more attention to working towards negative splits.  Conscious pacing is tough and not something that happens overnight, but it’s worth being mindful of.

I know I’m a slow runner.  And though I do think I won’t always be quite this slow, I know I probably always will be.  But just because I run slow doesn’t mean I can’t run strong.  And hard.  And far.  Really, really far.  And that’s what I’m aiming for. 

Somewhere on the road I realized that tonight’s run was further than the distance between where I get on the I-10 after work and where I get off it to get home.  Even though I know four miles isn’t that long in the scheme of things, laying it out like that in my mind was a cool way to visualize the distance and realize that this really is pretty significant.

I’m trying to balance feeling awesome and on a roll with knowing that I need to keep my mileage increase gradual.  So I’ll either rest or just do 2-3 tomorrow, then go from there.  Hopefully I can get one more long run in before I leave to go back east on Sunday. 

Hannah

Hit 3.5

I’m feeling really strong tonight.  This run was comfortable and meditative.  I felt like I was gliding over the miles.  Nothing was or felt particularly fast, but everything about it just felt consistent.  I just kept thinking, this is distance running. I know I haven’t reached some kind of permanent nirvana state of running, but I caught a glimpse of it tonight and I am letting myself enjoy that. 

It’s also becoming very real to me that if I want to run a spring marathon (I’m thinking LA or Napa, I’d rather run Napa because it’s pretty with cooler temps and close enough that I could stay with my parents, but LA would be a lot more convenient) training would start October 1st.  I think I’m going to do it, it’s just daunting that it’s so soon.  But I figure I would like to be comfortably running 10k by the beginning of training and my goal is to be running 4.5-5 miles by the end of August, which makes that a comfortable goal.  It’s scary to realize that I am casually talking about training for 26.2 when 3.5 feels like an awesome accomplishment, but I really believe I can do it.  So what’s the worst that happens? I realize that maybe I’m not ready just yet and turn my attention to the half and just generally enjoying running.

In the meantime, I’m just enjoying how great I’m feeling about tonight’s smooth miles.  

Hannah 

Going strong

After a day of a 21 item to-do list (most of which actually got done) I really needed this run. I did 3 miles and found a nice cozy runners high. I wanted to stop at two, but after pushing through the initial part I actually felt at my strongest in the third mile, which is something I’ve noticed a lot. More evidence that I just need to do it and it will fall into place.

I’m definitely going to push for a 3.5 this week because I’m really scared of stalling. I have another nike mileage goal set, but it’s really just a softball to make sure I hit silver this month. So far I’ve run 7/18 miles and I have seventeen days left.

I’m trying to kick up my mileage this week to leave room for next week, which will definitely be a dip because I’m going back east so I’ll be busy frantically seeing people, etc. But it’s all good. All exciting.

Hannah

This was such a big win for me.  Not even because of the miles, but because I was able to follow through on a mileage goal - no injuries, no interruptions.  The jinx is officially broken.  Whaddup. 
The run was sort of unremarkable, but I felt good.  I had a slow first two miles but the third was both decently paced and by far the fastest, so that made up for it.  
This is also symbolic for me in proving that I can run consistently and build up a solid mileage base, which is a sign that I’ve conquered the initial mental block of returning to running.  Dare I say it, I’m feeling like a runner again.  Maybe even a better runner than I was before.  Almost. 
Hannah

This was such a big win for me.  Not even because of the miles, but because I was able to follow through on a mileage goal - no injuries, no interruptions.  The jinx is officially broken.  Whaddup. 

The run was sort of unremarkable, but I felt good.  I had a slow first two miles but the third was both decently paced and by far the fastest, so that made up for it.  

This is also symbolic for me in proving that I can run consistently and build up a solid mileage base, which is a sign that I’ve conquered the initial mental block of returning to running.  Dare I say it, I’m feeling like a runner again.  Maybe even a better runner than I was before.  Almost. 

Hannah

Morning Running

After a long and sort of strange day yesterday that ended without a run, I found myself inexplicably awake at 430 this morning. I had contemplated doing an early run then decided I needed the sleep more and set my alarm for regular time. But since I was up with no hope of going back to sleep, I went out for a quick two miles at 530.

I do understand the appeal of morning running. It is nice being out there in the quiet and it is nice and cool. I also understand that I am not a morning runner. My body just isn’t particularly well suited for it.

Interestingly, by the second mile I was unbelievably bored. Like the most bored I’ve ever been while running, just watching the distance tick by. I really really missed music for the first time since those initial runs without headphones. I think it has something to do with the fact that when I’m running in the evening I’ve lived a whole day so my mind has things to mull over (or run away from) as a sort of mental de-frag. But in the morning, the de-frag already happened by way of sleep. Added to being tired, my mind felt blank but unfocused and apathetic during this run.

That was all pretty negative, but I do feel good and I’m glad I did it. I have three more miles to run by tomorrow to hit my mileage goal. I’m considering doing a double shot and running tonight, but I’ll see how I feel. Regardless, the mileage goal is happening. Finally. Hopefully. Don’t jinx it now.

Hannah

The Quiet Runner in the Rain

LA had a nice surprise for me when I stepped out tonight: rain.  Between it being the dry season and the severe drought, I was genuinely shocked.  While I’m glad I don’t have to do it all the time, a short run in the rain was a nice treat.  Plus it’s a relief because I get really anxious about the drought situation.  I know one rainstorm won’t fix it, but it’s still good. 

I wasn’t sure if I was going to run today, but I decided to just do an easy two because I just wanted to run.  

I felt good even though my legs were a little tired.  Seven miles in three days is pretty heavy mileage for me, but I’ve been loving the run and I’m proud of myself for doing it.  I might rest tomorrow, but I also might sneak in another two even though I know I will still have these miles on my legs.  I just know I’m going to want to rest on Monday after a working all day and I’d rather not skip two consecutive days that weren’t both work days (I’d rather not skip two days at all, but the full time life can get grueling and I have learned to be a little lenient.)  

So I’ll see how I feel.  The legs are a little tired, but the body and mind feel great.  I can’t complain. 

Starting the weekend off strong

Three good miles logged tonight. Not the powerhouse type miles of last night, but rhythmic and meditative. I’m still working on breaking into that third mile and making it as strong as the other two, but I’m covering it. And all I can do is keep covering it until it’s a given.

I’m considering trying to get in a 3.5 intention this week, but I’ll see how I feel. I would be fine waiting another week. Part of a schedule-less training schedule is following how I feel as I’m going and right now that’s working really well for me. So all I have to do is keep going.

Hannah

Some shots from my very touristy (as in a little more focused on capturing the scenery than the miles) Vancouver running 

I probably could have done three but I didn’t have a whole lot of time and even though my legs felt good I just didn’t really feel up to it.  But I worked hard to make those two miles count.  I am very proud of those splits.  Two miles under 12:30 AND negative splits is a really huge accomplishment for me right now, even if it’s slow by pretty much any standard.  I was pushing to get the second mile under 12:00, but so it goes.  I’m really proud of this run and ready to kick up my mileage.  
Also I have some running photos from my weekend in Vancouver which I’ll post at some point. 
Between fall internship interviews after full days of work and being generally beat, it’s been a tough week for me as far as getting out there to run. But I’m proud of what I accomplished tonight and ready to ride this momentum through the last week of my mileage goal (still playing a bit of catch up, but I really do believe I can hit it) and into gunning for silver in August.  
Hannah

I probably could have done three but I didn’t have a whole lot of time and even though my legs felt good I just didn’t really feel up to it.  But I worked hard to make those two miles count.  I am very proud of those splits.  Two miles under 12:30 AND negative splits is a really huge accomplishment for me right now, even if it’s slow by pretty much any standard.  I was pushing to get the second mile under 12:00, but so it goes.  I’m really proud of this run and ready to kick up my mileage.  

Also I have some running photos from my weekend in Vancouver which I’ll post at some point. 

Between fall internship interviews after full days of work and being generally beat, it’s been a tough week for me as far as getting out there to run. But I’m proud of what I accomplished tonight and ready to ride this momentum through the last week of my mileage goal (still playing a bit of catch up, but I really do believe I can hit it) and into gunning for silver in August.  

Hannah

Tonight’s run was a little odd in that I felt 65% AMAZING and 35% absolutely terrible.  My legs were a little tired and there was a rock in my stomach.  I kept having to retie my shoes in the first half mile or so.  But against all odds I actually kept a really good pace.  The last mile was a push again, but I did it in decent time (for me) and felt good. 

The bronze used to be something that was a given in the first ten days or so of the month.  But this month it was an accomplishment and I’m proud of myself. Tonight also, due to forgetting to restart my running watch after one of my shoe ties, was my first 5k back. 

I’m still a little behind on my mileage goal, but I hit my mileage for this week so I’m not increasing the deficit.  I’m going away for a family reunion this weekend so it may be a little tough to get the miles in, but I’m aiming to get out at least once or twice. 

Hannah