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Falling in love all over again

Saturday, November 22, 2008

This week I unintentionally fell in love with running all over again and let me tell you it feels great! After the marathon I was left wondering, what's next? I didn't really get the post marathon blues that others talk about. I was all too happy to take a break from the long runs, shed the few pounds I'd gained during training (my ticker now up to date), get back to my weights, cross train and just run for fun. Still, I was kind of lost when it came to setting a new goal. It felt nice just to be running however many miles I pleased without a set plan, but without a purpose, running was losing some of its shine for me.

There have been many times where I have wished that I could erase all my running history and go back to the beginning. I know that sounds kind of weird, but sometimes I wish I could experience the newness of running again, you know, that excitement you feel, that sense of accomplishment when you're able to run that first mile and then two and then three. It's kind of like when you've been married for awhile and your single friends talk about first dates, or when your girlfriend is over and her bf calls her like five times while you're watching "Lost" because their relationship is all giggly and new. Okay, forget the last example, that's just annoying! It's not that you don't love what you already have, but occasionally you miss that feeling of newness. It's like that with running. I'm proud of all that I have accomplished and I still love it, but it's hard to get that same excitement about running anymore. Sure, training for and running races is exciting, but usually only at the beginning when you set the goal and then at the end when you run the race. All the miles in between tend to be quite uneventful and dare I say a tad boring at times. Sometimes, just a means to an end.

So, winter has officially arrived and everywhere I look there is snow. In years past this would be when I move my running inside to the treadmill and spend the next five months staring at the wall while I run, listening to the same songs over and over. Boring! Also, not particularly fun if you're training for an event and have to do your long runs on there. My treadmill record stands at 14 miles and I honestly hope I never beat it.

This week I was going a little stir crazy and felt the need to get outside. I decided that maybe I should try a run and see how bad it really was. DD was being particularly difficult and I thought some fresh air would do us both some good. I don't really have the proper attire for winter running, but I made do with what I had and suited up. You may see me on a worst dressed list in the near future, but at least I was warm. It was snowing pretty heavily, but I wasn't going to let that stop me. I bundled DD up, put her the jogging stroller and off I went. The first half mile was pretty chilly and I could barely see through all the snow which had now turned into a small snow storm, but I kept on trucking. After the first mile I had warmed up and was surprised to find that I felt great. I felt better than great. It felt so empowering to be out there in a snow storm, pushing a jogging stroller. I ran 3 of my slowest miles ever, but I didn't even care and I was so proud of myself was getting out there. I'm officially in love!

I was super excited to go running outside again today. My MIL took DD for the day so I was stroller free this afternoon. I stopped by the mall today and picked up a hat, a neck warmer thingie and some tights for a base layer since the temperature has dropped drastically in the past couple of days. Today it was -12, but it felt like -19 with the wind chill. Brrrrrr! When I stepped outside, dressed and ready for my run I started to think that perhaps I was crazy, but once I got going it wasn't so bad. My pace is considerably slower because of the snow and I had to blaze my own trail today on the old rail trail since the snowmobiles haven't packed it down yet. Slow or not, those 5 miles today felt the best! Winter running is my new challenge. Over the next several months I will be faced with even colder temperatures, snow storms, ice and deep snow and I can't wait to conquer it all. The excitement has returned. Everything is new again because I get to experience a world of firsts. My first time pushing a jogging stroller in the snow, my first 5 miles in the snow and this weekend will be my first race in the snow. I was so excited that last night I decided to enter a 10 mile race on Sunday. Kind of impulsive, but totally doable and I can't wait!

Have a great weekend everyone!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    This is so encouraging for me as I try to get back into winter running. In the past, it has been my favorite, actually :-) Keep it up!
    4499 days ago
    Your post brought back memories. I haven't run in the snow in years! One time we had snow to our knees and we ran only 2 miles panting the whole way. We were laughing so hard by the end we could barely make it in. Maybe I'll have to try a go at it again. Thanks for your post.
    4505 days ago
    Hi. Love the blog. Made me think a lot because I am still in the "newness" phase. Can't IMAGINE running 20 miles of 9.37 pace (like in your last blog - WOW). But I'm already worried about falling out of love with it once the 8 minute mile is achieved and the 2.30 half -marathon or whatever goal.

    Yesterday, I talked to a LOOOONNNNNG-time runner about how to dress for winter running and he gave me some great tips about not giving up. A couple things stuck with me - he said he takes winter running less seriously, and he says he only sets overall time goals for winter, never distance goals (cuz he says the effort is the same as if you'd run your normal distance for the given time). Anyway lots made sense, and now YOUR blog has further inspired me to just go do it. I mean i LOVE skiing, snowshoeing and skating outdoors in the winter. WHY WHY WHY do I dread running? I should just take it easy and enjoy.

    Ciao! And thanks for the inspiration - I'm gonna do it!. Mo from Ottawa
    4506 days ago
  • KISSES1959
    I, too was officially in love with your blog!

    4509 days ago
  • KISSES1959
    Honestly, I haven't tried running. I only have experienced brisk walking... and imagine at 49, it was only last month that I have tried walking seriously for an hour and I felt overjoyed! emoticon

    Your journaling inspire me a lot. Thanks.
    4509 days ago
    Thanks. Love your post. Love the thread your hosting. I am thinking of running and you gave me some inspiration. emoticon
    4526 days ago
  • ZAKAM1
    Your post was great... I am a want to be runner at 47 y.o. I am trying to talk myself into starting the C25K and glad that I stumbled upon your blog. You are very inspiring... I am really wanting to fall in "like" or even "tolerate" running at this point. I am hoping that I find the joy in it as you have..
    4526 days ago
    I love your picture--- I can totally relate to running in the snow-- it somehow isn't about how fast you go anymore.... I am very happy for you!
    4538 days ago
    Living in FL, I can't really relate to running in snow, and running in blazing heat just doesn't compare... BUT, I can totally related to falling in love with running again! I also had a big event a few weeks ago and didn't get the blues afterwards - in fact, I'm in taper now for another HM and it's driving me crazy!!

    Anyway, I hope your newfound love carries you through many happy miles this winter!

    4543 days ago
    I am tingling all over from your entry. I have long since wanted to run for that specific reason. To run outside and feel free against all the elements. This was beautifully written.

    I love it.
    I can't wait to fall in love again ;).

    4544 days ago
  • MARLIE13
    I think you should submit this to a running magazine for publication. It was a beautiful read and I'm very inspired by you!
    4546 days ago
    That IS inspiring. And thinking of firsts... that's creative! That's made me start thinking of some firsts I could apply to my life now. I personally really dislike the snow, but I want to like it... so that counts for something. I'm working on my 5k time for December, and I really need to make it outside for runs. Tomorrow is a good day to start!
    4549 days ago
  • MDEAN1177
    WOW....you are inspiring me to run out in the snow...I am in week 5 of my C25K training and I have to run a straight 20 minutes with no walks in between!!! I am SCARED! I know you are giggling to yourself thinking that 20 minutes is a breeze, and someday I hope that I think that 20 minutes is a short run, but right now, 20 minutes is my LONG run! lol My 5k is scheduled for February and I should really get used to running in the snow! You have inspired me to get out there today!
    4550 days ago
    I'm so glad you've got your mojo back! Truly though, I can't re-create the feeling I get when I run out of doors regardless of the weather. I'd really rather be out there even in a driving storm. I personally love running in the snow. Probably because I'm just visiting and can go back home to the south and not deal with it for the rest of the winter. But the quiet is trancendant.
    4550 days ago
    i am glad you are getting outside to kill some of that dreadmill boredom. i know it gets colder where you are than here.... hence the snow lol.... however i use some black long johns i got from mec that are half the price of their tights (about $35). i get so many compliments on them too. i don't share my secret though... just with you and a couple of other canadian sparkers.
    4550 days ago
    Wow! I am a cold wimp. Don't even wan to go out to get the mail, but now-right now, you have inspired me to go jog. Can I borrow your hat?
    4551 days ago
    I sent your whole blog to my Ironman son-in-law and he said "This gal should consider snowshoe running, no kidding." There you have the advice of one living in Florida where they close the pools if the air temp gets down to 45 degrees. He grew up in Newport Beach surfing. Kidding aside, he is a tremendous athlete, super intelligent and know a ton and is a PhD in Psychology and works in multiple sports. His advice is pretty smart almost all the time.
    4551 days ago
  • BRUIN2

    Sarah, this made me all teary!

    I'm so happy for you - rediscovering a passion is so....amazing....empowering....wond

    I'm thinking that the creative people are the only ones who can survive winter running on the prairies - I mean, we've got to figure out how to dress, we've got to figure out how to completely change/slow down our gait, we've got to GET OUT in this weather!!

    Have a great time at the race tomorrow!!!
    4551 days ago
    Crazy woman! I totally loved reading this blog, Sarah! How fun....
    12 below? WOW.....can't imagine...my lowest temp was about 15 above. Good for you enjoying it, no matter the pace. That's what running is all about.
    We are getting our first spits of snow today but it won't amount to much.
    Take care!
    4551 days ago
    Your blogs always make me happy...and I am so glad to hear about your "new love". I count on you in a really crazy way to keep ME enthusiastic and here you go again. You are bold and brave and a strong athlete...with heart!

    And have an adventure filled race this weekend.
    4551 days ago
  • no profile photo CD696706
    What a great blog. It's pretty cold here also and snow has fallen overnight so everything is covered. I will be running on my treadmill. But I have to add that winter running can be totally fantastic. gail
    4551 days ago
    Love it is. Most anything outside is better than inside. What a great love story. Thanks!
    4551 days ago
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