MY SUMMER CHALLENGE RESULTS: Mostly the words “my”, “me”, and “I “ are edited out of daily blog posts. This post isn’t possible without those words, unfortunately, and I am cringing a bit, still trying to omit as many as possible. However, this piece is an honest accounting of what went well and not so well with my personal challenges this season.
My streak started before the unofficial beginning of summer, on May 8 (22 days before Memorial Day, May 30) and stopped on August 17 (20 days before the unofficial end of summer on Labor Day). I had not meant to stop. It was a travel day with flight delays. Although transportation arrangements were made to arrive home as soon as possible, the hours slipped away, thunderstorms continued, and the opportunity was lost to get out the door.
On another earlier, train-delayed, July travel day I had not gotten home to run until 11:30pm, had quickly laced up shoes, and finished the mile with a few minutes to spare before midnight. There was no time for a warm-up or dynamic stretching. Afterward, I was proud to have gotten the run in despite the difficulties. Then, only about 3 weeks later, my streak ended.
After missing that day in mid-August it seemed like there was no point in starting over, as the streak was only intended to last until September 5. I experienced a huge sense of failure. However, with the Memorial Day to Labor Day span equaling 99 calendar days of running, my 101 day streak was, in spirit, as long as the traditional summer season.
Possibly I will trial a 1-mile-a-day walking streak this Fall to see how long it can be stretched. It might more easily be incorporated into an aggressive training plan, provide adequate recovery time, and be worked into days with scheduling issues.
2016 RUN-WALK ACROSS AMERICA, PORTLAND OR TO PORTLAND ME
This challenge was truly fun because I learned so much about the countryside along and near the virtual route. How much more I could have improved my knowledge of the USA if I had actually traveled across the country on these roads! I felt excited and encouraged to bump up the weekly mile tally some weeks as needed, to accommodate the itinerary.
The activity has spurred some serious thinking about planning an "unsupported epic adventure" (a blog topic later this month) for 2017. I hope to use the remainder of the year, if fall weather permits, to learn about my capability to hike/fast pack from point to point over long distances and arrange for food/water/shelter without organized support. I may design a spring or summer personal epic if the experiment goes well.
RUN 5K’S (FASTEST)
This challenge was successfully met in that I DID run my fastest personal 5K. I also ran a fastest personal half marathon on the Labor Day weekend. Weather conditions for both races were perfect and the courses were familiar, which helped immensely and for which I cannot take credit. I felt appropriately trained for the distances. Adding weekly speed-work sessions were the key change in training. The fastest 5K about 4 weeks earlier was a good test.
The SUMMER OF 2016 is in the books! It was a busy schedule but was worth making the commitment to accomplish new goals. Did you meet your summer challenges? What would you do differently next summer or this Fall?
BRIDGE TO PHYSICAL SELF
Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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