Discussion: How do you get running again?

This year has been interesting so far. I started off not wanting to do anything in the way of running at least, but so far I’ve run at least close to 15miles this year and it’s only February. I’ve done a couple bike rides as well, and feeling pretty good about it all. Now when I say I’ve been running, since that’s in the title of the article, I actually have been running but took some oomph to get started.

Decision Time
I have tons of runner folks on Twitter that I see tweets and posts about every day. Send my wife articles about running, diets, shoes, etc all the time. I also look outside and say to myself, I just wanna be there. I mulled it over for quite a while, Run or Bike? Hmmmm, I like biking better. But I could never find the time or remember all my stuff, so I got some cold weather tights, (and believe me it’s been *cold*), brought my backpack and my coldweather mock, put on my 3 yr old trail running shoes and just went outside and ran for a while in a familiar area so it wasn’t *too* daunting a task. Once I reached about the half way, I felt like crap, but I was at least pleased with myself that I got there.

Run, run, run
Geez, it can’t be that simple, I thought to myself the next day when faced with the same possibility of just “going outside” again. So I just did it, ran the same path, worse weather, felt better, drank more water and just went. Then I did it again the next day, and the next, then again the following week, and even got a bike ride in both those weeks on top of running. So, for now, at least, I’m pretty happy. As I write this, I’m doing my work, drinking water, and preparing to get things out of the way so I can go run at about 3pm-ish in the afternoon since I always work through lunch. I also adopted a plan to run. Run the same difficult ice and snow covered trail(s), make some small changes to keep things interesting, and try not to beat myself up, just finish the course I set out to do. Run, walk, fast, slow, just do it, find a way to dig in (without wanting to puke), and treat myself right so that I can run and not discourage myself.

Make it interesting
So I also mountain bike. I have a plan for running and biking on a regular basis because I like it, getting done running makes me happy, stronger and thus a better mountain biker, which also makes me happy. By running and biking I’m hoping these two activities can help me do better at both by breaking up the weeks monotony of running or biking(only), and also giving me results I’m happy with for different reasons. In the past I’d run over 2000 miles in one year. I hated it. It was the hardest, most displeasing thing I could ever have done, but didn’t have a choice cause I was in the military and that’s just what we did. Now I can choose and I had to rediscover the benefits and happiness I never knew I could get from combining the two activities. I love to exercise, and going to the Gym is fun, but I now know it’s almost never too cold or too snowy to get out during winter.
My plan is pretty simple, based off a 5-day work week:

Week 1: Run | Run | Run | Run | Run
Week 2: Repeat Week 1
Week 3: Run | Run | Run | Run | Bike
Week 4: Repeat Week 3
Week 5: Run | Bike | Run | Run | Bike
Week 6: Repeat Week 5

Then start the cycle over again. It’s a good base, I feel, to start running and biking in winter, outside, even in the cold. Especially all that running and biking in crappy conditions. You’ll feel like you can handle it fine after a couple weeks and might even miss the challenge when the weather is more fair. That’s just my 2 cents, hope you all like them.

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