When to Push On or Dial it Back

 

Good morning, friends!

First off, I am super excited because I am blogging to you this morning from my NEW LAPTOP! Yes, I’m freaking out over here. I’ve had an old Samsung laptop that has done me so well for the last eight years, but it was getting to the point where I couldn’t use it without it being constantly plugged in because the battery life was… Well, not very lively.

So, yesterday Ryan suggested we go to Best Buy. I have been looking for a new laptop on and off for the last year-ish, and so I finally broke down and decided to bite the bullet. I mean, I’m totally going to use the shit outta this (excuse the language – sorry, mom!) and it is worth the investment, but OH the price tag is painful when you are standing at the register, Visa in hand. Yikes. I mean, I get cash back points so there’s that, right?

Anyway, getting to the point of today’s post. I had an interesting run yesterday morning that sparked this idea in my head, and I wanted to share it with you.

Pushing hard is great and all, but when do you dial it in?

I originally had 7 miles on my plan for yesterday morning’s run. Now, after the 32km I ran on Monday, this was sure to be a piece of cake, right? Well, I woke up and my legs were still sore. Not unbearably sore, but noticeably tender still despite the fact that I hydrated pretty well after my run, stretched and took an ice bath. I thought to myself, “I’m just going to do five miles and give my body a break.” Then as I was getting into my running gear I decided, “Nope, six miles will be okay and I will just keep it nice and easy for an even hour.” That would mean a ten minute mile which is more than doable. BUT! This is the point of my story. What is the point of dialing it in and cutting back my run? Sure, I could swap a run from later on in the week (as some get shorter as the week goes on), but WHY? To stay in bed a little bit longer and then feel bad about it after work? Here’s the thing. It’s one thing to be TIRED and burnt out. I get it. I have been there, and it isn’t fun. However, when does it become skipping a workout out of sheer laziness? I’m all for rest days, but there is a time and place.

 

For me yesterday, as soon as I started running I made the commitment to do my seven miles because I owed myself to stick to my training plan. I am 31 days out from the marathon, and so every workout counts. Yes, I got a late start because I DID sleep in past my alarm thinking I would scale it back to five miles, but at the end of the day I got it done, and I feel 100x better that I stuck to the plan. I mean, what was my excuse not to? Much like there is a time and place for rest, the same can be said for pushing hard. Not every run has to be balls to the walls. That’s why it’s important to vary your training plan with a good mix of long runs, hard efforts, and easy runs. It all helps prevent injury to ensure we are not exhausting the same muscle systems over and over again, day in and day out.

I have probably said this before but I think it’s worth repeating. I think it’s important to stick to a plan, but you also have to have flexibility in that plan as well. Fail to plan, plan to fail. Having a training plan helps keep me accountable, and it helps to write things down so I can look back at my progress and learn from the runs that perhaps didn’t go so well. This also visually shows me if I should be scaling it back after a few hard runs in a row. Strategy, my friends! Obviously if you are sick or injured then you should for sure dial it in, but otherwise you owe it to yourself and your body to at least TRY. And if you’re not feeling it, then you’re not feeling it and sometimes you just have those days. BUT. Like I said. At least try.


I hope you guys have a great rest of your day! Let me know in a comment when YOU think it’s okay to dial it in. I’d love to hear your stories!

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