Some days you’ll have a good run, and some days you’ll have such an amazing run you feel like you could run forever. And then there are those days where you feel like you’re made of lead, and running just a mile feels like the hardest thing you’ve done in your life. And so comes the million dollar question: WHY are some runs better than others?
Change? That’s the million dollar answer to the million dollar question? Yes.
Hey, I too have good days and really, really rotten days (pretty much every run since the Rock and Roll marathon in June) where I question my ability not only as a marathon runner, but also as a runner who can even finish three miles!
But then, sometimes all it takes is a change of scenery, a few extra hours of sleep and a cool-ocean breeze to give me hope that I will someday again be able to run 26.2 miles.
A weekend spent in Hermosa Beach offered me two of the best runs I have had since long before I ran the marathon in June. I felt light on my feet, I was barely breathing hard, I felt like I could run forever, and I had no aches or pains anywhere. And so again, I asked the question, “WHY were these runs so darn good?”
Maybe it was because I was out of town? Maybe it was because I was able to sleep in? Maybe it was because of what I ate or didn’t eat right before my run? Maybe it was because I have not been running as many miles as I usually do? Maybe it was because I took a TRUE day off (meaning no yoga, no running, nothing) the day before the weekend?
I don’t know exactly which change it was or whether it was a combination of the changes, but, I do know…
Not every run will be this good, but also not every run will be bad. So next time you have a bad run, or a series of bad runs, change something: your scenery, the route, what you eat before you run, what you wear, run with someone, run with someone different, run alone, run without music, run with music, run with different music, just try something different. If what you’re doing now isn’t working, try something new. And even if you still have a crappy run, you’ll have stepped out of your comfort zone just enough to make you feel smarter and stronger, and will also give you something new to talk about to your significant other/running group/mom/child/dad/friend/co-worker.
Change IS good, I promise.
What do you do if you have a really bad run?