Monday, December 1, 2014

Here Goes the Off-Season...but first, let's Streak!

As much as I have been looking forward to an off-season (and, as bad as I know my body needs one), I have decided to do the Runners World 36 Days of Awesome Streak. Again. (I did the same streak last year)

What is a running streak?  Ever tried to do one?  This will be my fourth such streak. It simply means running everyday. In this case, running all 36 days from Thanksgiving through New Years Day.

Now, as most people know, I am not an advocate for daily running.  It works for some runners, but  I am not one of them. Most of the runners who streak do so because they do not do other forms of cross-training. Running is their exercise of choice and they choose to give it their full attention.

Turkey Trotting in the sub-ZERO temps--Day 1

I, however, tend to get easily bored. I love running, but I simply need other forms of exercise to keep me happy. True, running is my main form of exercise, but I need a balance of other activities as well (and so does my body). I also have realized that although the simple act of running (itself) has made me a decent runner, it wasn't until I added consistent cross-training to my life that I became an even better runner.

Yadda Yadda Yadda.

Breaking in some of the Black Friday finds--Day 2
 So, why would I chose to do a running streak, especially when I do not advocate daily running? Because it forces me out of my comfort zone. Plain and simple. And, although I am in the early stages of my self-proclaimed off-season, the daily running will give me a goal on my calendar. Also, I am desperately trying to transition from stability shoes to neutral shoes, and dong a series of short runs is probably my best option for that process to be successful (trying to do this towards the end of my 26.2 training was NOT so successful).

I have scaled back my mileage considerably since my last race (the Hillbilly Hike Half Marathon, almost a month ago). I'm running a couple times during the week (going only 2-3 miles each time) and my weekend runs have not been further than six miles. I will do an occasional longer run (maybe every three weeks or so), but that is contingent on my previous runs being pain-free and the weather being conducive (I refuse to do any long running on the treadmill...just not happening). I'm still doing cross-training (strength, stairs, calisthenics, etc.) on the other days, as well as yoga a couple times each week. My current level of fitness will not suffer from the lower mileage in my running shoes, in fact it will either maintain or (most likely) increase because of the extra attention I am giving to cross-training.

A few awesome miles with the husband! The 43-degree temps felt awesome--Day 3

If history repeats itself, this running streak will not require much of an effort on my part. I simply plan to run an easy mile on the "non-running" days.  Since I don't have any distance events on my immediate calendar, I really have no reason to be training as if I did.  I have no one to impress and nothing to gain by doing excess mileage this time of year.  And, as I have said before, my body needs a little vacation and some TLC.

Side note---Another comfort zone violation for me is my use of the dreaded "runfies."  You've seen them, the selfies a lot of runners feel compelled to post following a run.  I post them occasionally, but am going to try to post a "streakfie" during each of these 36 days of streaking....just to keep me accountable to the others who are streaking (and to see how many different and colorful outfits I can put together!). I think that's a win-win.

...and just like that, winter was back!  Sub-freezing temps with 17 mph wind --- Day 4

So, there you have it. Streaking through the holidays. Care to join me? 


  1. I love your runfies! I couldn't schedule just wouldn't allow it PLUS the effort to get dressed to run outside would take longer than me running 1-2 miles! That's my excuse...

    But I'm in this off season with you. i've got 2 months to get rested--got that Florida half in March. I'm looking forward to slowing down and enjoying the ride!

  2. I'm enjoying the "fun" runs with no pressure to crank out XXX miles each week. That's what running is all about, in my opinion. I tend to run more often and farther when I don't "have" to ;-)