In August, I joined a running challenge headed up by GD of PostBourgie notoriety. In it’s second month, the challenge grew exponentially from 6 people running 75 or 100 miles to 33 who set goals to run between 25 and 125 miles.
All July, I’d read GD’s updates on Twitter and Facebook in the form of miles just run/total miles/goal for the month. Meanwhile, I had a lazy month despite perfect running conditions (long days, a very mild summer which included many overcast mornings). My total mileage for July was a mere 42.3 miles. I set my goal for August at 75 knowing it would be a challenge, but attainable based on past months. I also knew I couldn’t slack off.
At first, the increased running was taxing on my body. I overloaded my first week as I knew there would be a few days where I wouldn’t run due to travel. As I regularized my schedule and got to read my body’s signs better, I improved. I ran 5.5-6 mile short runs. My long runs gradually increased to 8.2 miles. As the month progressed, I got a little faster, but mainly focused on increasing endurance. Toward the end of the month, I signed up for my second race, the Long Beach Half Marathon with my sister. (That photo above is from the 5K I ran last summer). I’d previously shied from a half marathon because of the more intense schedule, but I was doing it all month long. Why not just get one fitness goal done?
I caught a cold mid-way through the month. My sleep and work was affected, but not my running. In fact, I’d have a great run, stop and then start coughing. Plus, I couldn’t slack off as I had to check in with the other PB runners twice a week. I definitely benefited from the friendly competition and the encouragement of all the other PB runners.
My final run for the month was a short 5 miles. That brought my total to 93 miles, easily surpassing my 75 mile goal*.
Now, if only I could make myself sit down and write 93 pages of that dissertation.
For September, I’ll be doing 100 miles. The group is bigger now and includes some friends who are sort of new to running, Sean (the boyfriend) and Liz. Hopefully they’ll find that they’ll get better, faster and stronger too.
*Toward the end of the month, I thought I could reach 100. I planned a 7 mile morning run with Lori while I was home last week. Twenty minutes in to the run, I felt queasy. We walked home and I went back to sleep for a few hours. Later, I realized the cough syrup with codeine was likely the culprit for my queasiness. Oh well, sometimes you need a break.