Today I decided that I would start a 30-day running streak. And no, I don’t mean running naked in public as well as barefoot, get your mind out of the gutter! This challenge is to run at least one mile every day, for thirty days in a row, and see if it ends up turning into 60 or 90 days. I’ve been letting the idea to roll around in my head for a week or two now. But at some point this afternoon it donned on me that if I head out today, then I’ll actually be on day 2 already, since I ran yesterday as well. Retroactive inclusion is always a good motivator.
What inspired me to this new feat of ridiculousness, you might ask? Well, there have been many things. The first is my buddy Brad, who is just about to complete his own 120-day running streak, as part of a challenge proposed by our friend Jason Robillard on Facebook. And it wasn’t just that he did it that inspired me, it was how the streak has benefitted him over the past four months. He has become stronger, leaner and it helped him complete his first ultra marathon with almost no whining and shockingly few long training runs over 10 miles.
Another motivation is my new set of goals for running improvement. I figured that since the goal of completing my own first ultra has been completed, I might as well set up a few new ones for the summer (you know, so I don’t get bored):
- weight loss
These are three ingredients that I will use to reach my goal of becoming an overall stronger runner. While I am not obsessed with speed, I’d like to become a faster runner so my next ultra will conclude in a more reasonable time period. I’d like to build my endurance over a longer distance, so that I will require fewer walk breaks after the 10-mile mark. Working on my endurance will also help me to tackle hills better. And weight loss is an absolute must for the other two things to happen. Because, all training aside, there comes a point where your muscles may be at their peak performance, but the more weight they have to move the less efficient they are.
I have the same weight issues that 50% of the country has. Slow metabolism, heredity, lack of motivation and a gratuitous love for things with sugar in them. Running helps, but even running 25 miles a week isn’t enough if you’re still drinking beer and eating ice cream after dinner. So this last part is probably the hardest in the group. However, burning an extra 100 calories (per mile) every single day couldn’t hurt, right?
Not to mention the other positive effects a running streak would allow for. More responsive and resilient leg/foot muscles, better cardio-vascular health, extra stress relief, more frequent speed and hill training, more time to test new shoe models, and the list goes on. Not to mention my dog Oscar would get way more exercise during the week too, while I do my best to squeeze in a mile before or after work on really busy days. It’s going to be challenging, but it’s really nothing but a win-win situation.
Only downside is I’m going to either have to do laundry a lot more often or buy some more sports bras (since going braless is just not an option for me). And I might smell of B.O. more often, as I’ll not always have time to shower after running. Ahh, such is the fine stink of Eu de Running Sweat.
So, anyone wanna streak with me?
- Last to Start, Last to Finish: Pineland Farms Trail 50K Race Report (barefoot-monologues.com)
- Guest Post: Function and Fashion for Running Dudes (barefoot-monologues.com)