I ran everyday for a month

Afterthoughts: Midnight Library by Matt Haig

Shifting towards an Athlete’s Mindset

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I didn’t set out to run everyday, it just happened that way. My goal was to return from injuries that I picked up running about six weeks before as safely and as cautiously as I could. Practically, this meant running at a super low intensity as measured by heart rate. Part-way through the month, I picked up Yoga as I read that it was conducive to recovery as well as a great complementary activity in addition to running from a flexibility and mobility perspective. I am honestly astonished that I’ve made it this far while staying free from the slightest suggestions or injuries, clearly something is working.

For one, I cannot recall a period in my life where I have felt so reliably energised. I often run first thing in the morning initially out of necessity. I knew that if I ran while the sun was out, it would have an additive effect on my running heart rate. Running before sunrise ensured that it was a little colder and much easier to keep the heart rate down. After the first few times, I quickly realised that it was the source of a newfound energy I had for the day, it had to have been, I hadn’t changed anything else about my mornings. There was so much energy, and it was there everyday without fail. Normally, I would call myself a morning person, but now I am convinced of it.

For me, the last month has been record after record in terms of mileage and yet my legs feel fine. I have done about 250km in the last month, so that’s about 62.5km a week, and a smidge under 9km a day. If you told me I did that when I started running at the start of the year I’d be doing that much of it, I’d thought you foolish. There have been a handful of days here and there when I wake up and feel a slight tightness in the calves, but that is usually resolved after my comprehensive 15 minute warm-up.

I’ve never had more fun running. The low-intensity has helped tremendously with this. I can let my body run, and my mind is having fun listening to podcasts. It’s such a blast. An unexpected but pleasant thing I’ve come to look forward to each day is seeing familiar faces that also run the loop I do. I don’t know their names, and I probably never will, but it’s nice to have that shared (and imagined probably on my part) camaraderie in running before the sun rises. It’s not something people would voluntarily do, and that makes the fact that there are a handful of others out there that do people I have respect and admiration for.

While running everyday is not the goal – it is to be able to run until I am 80 – it has become my favourite part of the day. I suppose I feel this way because I am clear on why it is I want to run, and now that I am executing on that on all fronts, it is all just very motivating.

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