I enjoyed running back in high school. I enjoyed doing the long-distance runs and regularly came in 4th place in my PhysEd class for long-distance runs. I always took pride in this because it was the only thing in PhysEd that I did well.
Recently, I've started running again. I've started trying to run at least 10 kms twice a week, and to push myself hard on the weekends. This is my plan to get back into running and enjoy it, to get a little bit back in shape.
On Friday, I planned to do the following route:
I wound up doing that route, but it took a lot longer than the original map suggested. It was suppoosed to be 12 kms and it wound-up 16. And I didn't even come close to finishing the loop.
I take a lot of pride in this because it's the classic "get yourself out of a rut" advice: get outside and start running. And I'm actually doing it.
As I run, I enjoy the act of making choices: I choose to keep running to hear the next song, or to the next intersection, or to the next kilometre, or to the next round number on the clock. Between all these little checkpoints, I get a sense of agency in the act of running. It feels good.
As long as I stay away from running injuries.
Yesterday my daughters and I followed along with this episode of Hidden Brain as we tried to make some achievable goals. I don't have my daughters' consent to share their goals, but I can share mine: I aimed to, in the next four weeks, continue running 3-4 times a week and to try not to break down when we're having family trouble at home.
Here's the gist of the podcast from the NPR page:
Through the years, Oettingen has studied dieters, students, job seekers, love seekers, people recovering from physical injuries, and other strivers. She's found they all have something in common: Those who have stronger, more positive fantasies about reaching their goals are actually less likely to achieve them. They lose fewer pounds, earn worse grades, receive fewer job offers, stay lonely longer, recover from injury more slowly.
There's a chance that my goals might be too achievable, but I'm not so sure. I battle through a lot of emotional weight most of the time and am good at giving up on well-being practices. Not crying and continuing with running are good for me.
Oh, and on the topic of running, I broke all my records on Tuesday:
I started by wanting to run just 20 minutes without stopping, but then I broke 27. Then 37. Then 45. Now I've broken an hour. However, I'm only increasing my goal by one minute a run. So although I ran an hour and seven minutes on Tuesday, my actual goal is now at 39 minutes.
Achievable goals, baby.
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