I miss the lung-burning climbs, my heart beating so strongly I can feel it pushing on my chest. I miss the lazy saunter of the Greenway boardwalks, the sun slipping beneath the horizon slowly. I miss the thrill of leaning into the curve of the track, ready to take flight at the straightaway. I miss that sweet spot of falling into a rhythm and losing time with my thoughts.
I miss the little things. The tightening of my shoelaces before I begin. The vibration of my watch indicating another mile. When the run is so good I don't want to stop at the traffic light. That unequivocal feeling of satisfied exhaustion.
Man, I'm addicted. Addicted to the pain. Addicted to the process. Addicted to finding those days, those days, of when it all comes together and I feel like I have found the elixir to life.
To say I miss it is an understatement. But there is no reason to pity, I'll be back again. Mentally, it will make me appreciate the unrelenting half marathon workouts at the height of summer and the unforgiving alarms that goes off earlier on weekends. Physically, I hope to be stronger and more balanced.
The sweat has been far from satisfying this month. Strava says I've logged an hour more working out that last January.
All those hours are squatting, lifting, and planking are incomparable to running though. I can only hope it leads to a faster recovery time and eventually, better running. Coupled with better nutrition and no booze, I might have found an ab muscle too!
In an attempt to do an experiment on my resting heart rate (RHR), I cute out booze from my life in January. I love a glass of wine (Oregon pinot please) or a hoppy IPA with dinner nearly nightly and my RHR has been high as long as I've been tracking it. I sleep really well, exercise (duh), limit my caffeine to no more than 2 cups of coffee per day (usually 1), and don't have any major stressors in my life. Of course, I've reduced my cardio this month, but other than that, my RHR stayed exactly the same. All that to say, SOMEONE BRING ME A BEER TOMORROW!
I also cleaned up my diet. No harsh restrictions, but I have really upped the good stuff and reduced the processed stuff. It purposefully coincided with the no booze experiment. I'll definitely stick with many of the habits - especially while I'm not running. But much like the booze experiement, I haven't noticed much in the way of physical changes.
Despite an hour more of activity hours in the month of January, I somehow gained a lot of free time this month. Some attributed to run commuting (running from my house limits my options and is not safe) and some attributed to just embracing other activities.
I did a lot of serious nerding - a giant crossword, a jigsaw puzzle, and finished 4 books. I cooked and baked a lot. I saw my nephew 3 times this month, went to dinner with friends, and actually spent 6 hours one Saturday cleaning and organizing my house. I went to a birthday party at a brewery (didn't have a beer, whaaaaaa???) and a birthday party at a Vietnamese restaurant.
It's been a good month for the soul. But now that stupid January is coming to an end, I'm ready to heal up, get back to big mile weeks, nachos, pints, and a messy house.