I'm in the back row, far left. Blue jacket. Black ninja hat.
At 10 a.m. New Year's Day, I met 20 like-minded folks. People who wanted to run. Many of them were kicking off 2015, others were clocking a training run for a spring marathon. Some were running for the first time as a community team member, some starting back from injury. All were beginning something.
For me, though, I was ending something. It was the last day of the #RWRunStreak. The miles I would log would mark 36 consecutive days of running. And, the next day, I would sleep in. I would shower at home. I would go to work with finished makeup and done hair.
I wasn't expecting much out of the run. My legs have felt tired for some time, and I have lacked some enthusiasm. The weather, though, better than last year seemed uncooperative. Mid-20s with comparable wind, bringing the real feel down to zero. And, I have had a good run this pregnancy but I am feeling slower.
But I ran. Five miles, some better than others, and enjoyed the company of those around me. I relished falling into pace with another the last mile, someone who wanted to walk every so often. It was welcome as the wind thwarted any efforts to keep up with those ahead. (My normal buddies were running 8 miles, not 5.)
When I got back to the store, it was a relief to be done — with the run and the streak. They were nice challenges, and I was glad to have gone on the run and taken them on. I liked the success. I liked putting it in my running log. I liked saying I did them.
And did them I had.
Here's how the #RWRunStreak shook out for me:
36: Number of runs
146.43: Number of miles covered
8: Number of early morning runs
10: Number of runs less than 2 miles
10.05 miles: Farthest run
1: Number of runs I did in my pajamas (Christmas morning)
• It was nice to have a challenge outside of a training plan. It felt like I had something to work toward, a goal to accomplish. It was also good motivation on days that I would have deemed unsuitable — like, say, New Year's and NYE when it was just frigid.
• I liked adding a fifth day of running, a shorter run of 3 or so miles. It was usually in the early morning, on Wednesdays. It's something I can see myself keeping it on the schedule.
• The streak reminded me that exercise doesn't take an hour, it doesn't have to, but you do need to work it in. I can easily take advantage of the time while Mark bathes Miles or as dinner is cleaned up.
• Before the streak, I thought running a mile was stupid. And, guess what? I still do. The only place that it seemed OK was doing a quick treadmill run before teaching barbell class. My hips are tight and squats can be challenging, and the mile warm-up helped get blood flowing to the joints.