It’s not like I haven’t wanted to run over the past 2 days, but after 28 miles last week (overkill after September 16th’s half marathon ? perhaps), a 1-day break on Sunday and 5 more delicious miles on Monday, my previously injured leg began to hurt ever so slightly.
Mid-run shin stretches have simply become part of the process.
Point taken, body. You win this round.
But first, to recount Monday’s glorious morning run.
Monday’s was one of those mornings that was unquestionably made for doing something — anything — outdoors. For one, it was the first time this season when I was able to run in a hoodie without overheating. Since many of you are not yet familiar with my fall running penchants (since I launched WRFG in the dead of winter), here is a definitive fact: I heart hoodies almost as much as I adore glitter, Haribo gummies, wine, soft white t-shirts — you get it.
The route was nothing special, but the way I felt from start to finish was.
From the moment I stepped out of my apartment and began making my way up to the 72nd Street entrance of Central Park, there was a spring in my step and my spirit that I hadn’t felt in quite some time. Those first 2 miles of “finding my stride?” Yea, they didn’t even exist; my happy place hit me within the first minute of my run, and I didn’t loose that mushy feel-good sentiment until I was back at my apartment 50 minutes later.
One of the best parts about Central Park this time of year is also one of the reasons why it is so damn hard to not run every day of the week. From the hoards of marathoners-in-training to the crunchy autumn leaves, much of the surroundings seem as though they were taken straight from a Woody Allen movie. Whereas, during the summer, it can be oh-so-difficult to find the motivation to run outdoors while practically suffocated by Manhattan’s swamp-like air, fall provides you with a refreshing change.
Naturally, I was pretty bummed when I finally admitted that my leg was kind of hurting. By Monday evening, I resolved to take Tuesday and Wednesday off.
On Tuesday, I spent 60 minutes (for once actually making it to the 60-minute mark) strength training in my living room. In need of a little variety, I peppered my typical routine with a few new YouTube videos, two of which I actually really enjoyed.
One of these things is not like the other; if you haven’t guessed it yet, it’s the addition of Ballet and Pilates Fusion 1 and 2 — videos which have never made it into my living room workouts before.
I have to say, I really liked these. While short, they offered easy-to-follow arm workouts, which I’d been on the hunt for forever. Being able to fall back on these will be great on those mornings when simply lifting my 8-pounders and swinging them in all different directions seems inefficient (which, typically, it is).
Also on the bright side: This two-day running drought seems somewhat appropriate, aligning itself with the one day a year that Jews — my people — spend 24 hours fasting and abstaining from anything else that requires energy, exertion or, in general, fun. And although I won’t be completely removing myself work, food and exercise, I will be taking the day to reflect and practice a heightened sense of mindfulness.
In the fitness world, there are few better ways to be mindful than to engage in a yoga flow. On Wednesday morning, that’s how I plan to supplement my inability to run.
Between Monday’s 5-miler, Tuesday’s 60-minute workout and Wednesday’s yoga sequence, this week is turning out to be pretty jam-packed with sweat, just like it should be. And as for that delicious fall air that seems impossible to enjoy from the confines of an apartment or house? Just open up your window! Even on mornings when you can’t run outside, you can still get your fix of fall by inviting it into your home.
An easy fast to those who participate in this ritual holiday, and a happy hump day to the rest of you beasts.