Monday, May 5, 2014

Before What's Next, There Is Now...

So what's next has been a popular question I have been asked a lot lately.  And sure I have a plan for the summer I know what I'd like to run but sometimes I think as a runner we all get too caught up in what's next that we don't acknowledge the what's happening.  As runners most of us are meticulous planners, we plan out every detail of our training logs, know the workouts we want to run and the races we are looking to peak and train through.  For some of us this intense level of planning carries over to our regular lives, as my wife can attest as I have hundreds of To-Do lists and tons of email plans for our weekends and what I want to accomplish.  Don't get me wrong it's fantastic to have a plan and to know what you want to do in the time ahead, but I also think it's important to acknowledge the now.  As the great poet Ferris Bueller once said: "Life moves pretty fast.  If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

This is an important lesson to take with me for my current state.  I just finished a really good season with a bunch of PR's and running times I did not think I could achieve maybe ever.  It's easy to put all that behind me immediately and rush forward to the next goal but I think it's even more important to take a step back and realize how I got there  I think as runner's we are quick to call a race result good/bad just based on achieving our goal time.  The good results we immediately attribute to a well designed plan, and the bad results we write a long post in our logs and try and go over everything that could have steered us off course.  We even do this in our lives when we end up somewhere that wasn't part of the plan.  But what we don't do a good job of is, when something goes right to really step back and find out why it went right.  What did we do right this time that allowed us to achieve our goals in running or in life.  It's easy to forget to do this because once you achieve your goal in our minds it's time to get to the next goal immediately.

What I am getting at is, in life or running it's important to treat success and failure the same way.    For a runner this can be done very easily, as you finish a cycle, which us runner's are accustomed to calling a period where we build up, train, and race our peak event.  Write a recap of what happened during this cycle and what worked, what didn't work and importantly how you felt.  At the same time in a different way as you progress through life, you can do the same thing when you get that promotion at work you coveted.  Take time after these milestones to sit down and think back to what worked.  What did you do differently this time?  How you felt on workouts, any injuries or setbacks etc.  All this information should be jotted down and help you improve as a runner in the future.  Sometimes we feel the best lessons are learned in our failures, but our successes can give us equally good information to continue to improve.  Additionally we also do a terrible job of  not fully recognizing or being excited with what we have accomplished when it happened.

Achieving a goal is a huge deal, it's something we planned for and eventually achieved through our hard work and dedication.  But when we are so concerned with the what's next it will leave our accomplishments to feel as just blips on a radar where we focus all our energy on our failures.  When you achieve your goal, you should bask in it's glory.  Be satisfied that you did it, and in due time move on to the next thing you can achieve.  There's a fine line between being ambitious and not taking the time to acknowledge and enjoy one's accomplishments.  For me, I have big goals for this summer in the 5k/10k and even this fall, but for the time being I am just taking in what I have done in 2014 and being thankful I could achieve it.

Training Week 4/28 - 5/4
Monday - Wednesday - Off Post Marathon
Thursday - 5.5 mile easy run at lunch with Dave, felt incredibly sore
Friday - Off
Saturday - 6 Miles with Erik, Cory, Franco at Fiesta 5k, including some bandit miles.... shh don't tell anyone
Sunday - Long Run with a good group from Gilman.  6:45's on a hilly course for 9.5 miles, a little longer than I wanted to go but started to feel a little better

Total - 21 miles