7 miles

Tomorrow I have a 7 mile run planned. 7 miles is not the farthest distance I have run, but it is the longest for me since July 14th. 7 miles is just a weekly training run for some, and there are others who will never run this distance in their lifetime.

I remember the first time I attempted a 7 mile run. I was training for the San Francisco Half Marathon 2012 and I was elated just to watch the miles add up week after week. I knew I could finish if I just took the run slow; each step was a step closer to the 7 mile goal. It may not have been a speedy effort, but as long as I kept moving forward I would eventually get there.

The most difficult thing about being an injured runner (or any athlete for that matter) is the mental defeat that can come with having to cease activity. There is almost a guaranteed loss of fitness during a layoff, and it’s hard not to compare your recovery efforts to your pre-injured self. Even with cross-training, there is still an adjustment period as you re-introduce your body to sport.

I’m very grateful my injury was mild and I can run again, but every now and then I’m finding myself brush off my efforts. I’m “only” running 3 miles at a time, or I “only” ran 6 miles last week, very “slowly.” I will probably take several walking breaks tomorrow-and I need to be OK with that. Because 2 months ago I wasn’t able to run 1 mile. I ran a marathon earlier this year, and with patience and dedication I WILL see 26.2 again!

I read a great piece of advice earlier this week on another blogger’s site that really stuck with me. Piratebobcat writes in his post Training tip: Practice like you Play! about preparing for training runs like you would a race. He talks about fueling properly before a run, and describes how he preps all of his clothes/training gear the night before so it’s an easy transition to just wake up and get the job done. It’s such a simple concept but one that I certainly do not adhere to. What I love about this is it not only makes life easier, but gives due respect to the training run. If I approach race day with pride, why not all of the hard work it takes to get there? After all, it’s the journey not the destination.*

7 miles tomorrow is not going to be “only” 7 miles. It’s my 7 mile long run for the week and I’m ready!

photo 3

Gear is all set!

-J

*I do love getting the medal, though!

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17 thoughts on “7 miles

  1. Good luck with the run tomorrow! I’m sure that the process of recovering from an injury can be really frustrating at times. However, it’s great that you get to go for a run at all, even if it’s slower and not as far as you’d like. I always like to think that a day on which I get to run is better than any day on which I didn’t run at all.

    • Thank you, and really great advice. I have noticed I talk a little down about my runs because at one point my conditioning was better and I was faster. The thing is though, I celebrate other people’s accomplishments no matter what speed or distance they run! I know I’m just rebuilding my base, and I don’t know if I give myself fair credit sometimes!

  2. I’m so honored that I could help in some way! And I completely agree, there’s no such thing as an “easy” distance. They all have their challenges, no matter how long you’ve been running (or not). If it was easy, everyone would be doing it, right? Have fun on your 7 miler!
    *ps. I’m with you on the medals!

    • Yes, thank you! The challenge IS what is so enticing to me about running, and sometimes I forget this when things get tough-especially when I feel I should be better. You have a lot of really great advice on your site, and this particular post really spoke to me! 🙂

  3. Happy Running Jamie! Enjoy and run your run. That is my motto.
    I hear you though with how you think about being injured and how your say it was “only”. We have to try and remember that the “only” is better than none.

  4. Oy. Yes. Every time I get bummed out about the fact that I can “only” run 6-8 miles at a time and am “only” getting in 20 mile weeks, I have to remind myself that in June I could barely walk. :-/

    • Going from barely walking to running at all is definitely something to appreciate, but it’s so hard for runners sometimes! Like I said in my post, even “shorter” runs are distances some people will never run (and maybe not want to 🙂 ) in their lifetime, so it’s all about perspective!

  5. This post is awesome. I compare myself and my runs to others and I find myself saying “only 3 miles” or “a very slow 8 miles” etc as if my runs pale in comparison to someone else’s. What matters is getting out there – a mile is a mile no matter the speed, and one mile is better than no miles. Thanks for sharing this 🙂

    • Thank you! I think a lot of long distance runners can relate to this feeling. The funny thing is-we will easily root for others regardless of how far or how fast, but we are so much harder on ourselves. I completely agree, one mile is better than no miles and we should not forget this!

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