5 Weeks of Running In: Where have I gone so far?

As readers may know, I decided to sign up for a marathon in Montana this July, which is actually 3 months from today. This weekend, I completed the 5th week of training with yesterday marking my very first double-digit run at 10 miles.  A couple weeks ago I also completed my 3rd Shamrock Shuffle 8K, besting last year’s time by a few seconds. It doesn’t seem like much, but I’ll take it.

What measurable things have I accomplished so far?

  • 84 miles run (combined treadmill and outdoors)
  • 10582 calories burned

Me so happy after the Shamrock Shuffle.

Yesterday’s post 10-miler lunch went down with ease.

I’m pretty sure all of 2013 I didn’t run 84 miles! And to think there’s still 3 months of training ahead. There will be many more burgers and other high-calorie meals in my future to not feel guilty about.

What about the non-measurable stuff?

In this short period thus far, I’ve already been seeing changes in routine that would never have occurred were it not for this marathon challenge. I’m waking up before 11AM on Saturdays, actually eating something  for breakfast, and often times already out on the road and paths getting my miles in.  There was even one Tuesday that I woke up early to do my scheduled run. The cold harsh wind hindered me from doing it outside, along with my lack of proper cold weather running gear, but I hit the office gym and got it done before work. I am not a morning person at all, so this was quite a feat.

Time on the treadmill, trails, and roads certainly provides a space to think with little else to distract you, except that burning question of “Am I done yet?” No email or phone calls bother me out there and my mind is able to work out problems I can knock out later on. Honestly, the monotony is sort of therapeutic in that sense.

While my eating habits aren’t improving just yet, I do find myself sleeping quite soundly and taking more naps as my body forces me to stop and allow it to rebuild and rest my muscles and joints. The stress of the longer runs is felt, but my hope is that it gets better as I gain strength and endurance.

I also finished a book I was reading (“Perelandra” by C.S. Lewis) over the course of many months, but am making quicker progress on another one (“Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell.) Maybe it’s the required focus of the schedule or the forced physical rest running has brought, but my mind feels sharper lately. Ideas are flowing in and out of work and I’m excited for what’s to come.

More to come. Excuse me while I go buy new shoes and hit the paths again.