100 days of running

I survived the 100 day running streak … barely. Today I fell HARD. At 6km into an 8km run, I slid across the sidewalk like a baseball player diving for home base. Luckily it was 6:15 am and no one in sight. I hobbled over to a stoop, assessed the damage (cut knee and some minor road burn on my palms, shoulder and hip) but I was okay and lightly jogged the 2km home. Not a great way to end a streak but as they say: No pain. No gain.

Way back in November, Runner’s World kicked off a social media campaign encouraging people to try a running streak from Thanksgiving (American) to New Years day – Run at least one mile everyday. #RWRUNSTREAK:

The run streak is designed to keep you running through the holiday season, and to bridge the gap between fall races and training for the spring. It can be difficult this time of the year to keep your running on track—but it’s much easier if you have a goal and a plan. The goal is simple: Run at least one mile per day, every day, starting on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, November 26) and ending on New Year’s Day (Friday, January 1). That’s 37 consecutive days of running.giphyMyself and a few friends accepted the challenge and off we went. Actually, we started a few days early to round-up the streak to 40 days instead of 37 because 37 is such an odd number to aim for and we’re not American so it made sense. We did it and then Tim and I just kept going. giphy (1)Here’s what I’ve learnt from my 100 day running streak:

  • It’s a lot easier than you think. 1 mile (or 2 km … which I did because again, 1.67 km seems like an odd goal for us metric-o-holics) can be done even when your day is busy, the weather is terrible, you are feeling like crap or all of the above – it takes less than 15 minutes to complete.
  • There were days I only ran 2 km… I got sick, I was travelling, I needed a rest day… and there were days I dragged Henry along (old dog doesn’t run fast) so my pace was crazy slow but I still did it.
  • It’s a good opportunity to work on hill training or speed-work because it’s only 2 km.
  • It’s addictive.
  • It bumps up your monthly milage in an unexpected way (I have run 549.99 km in 100 days = ~5.5km/day)
  • Sometimes the stress of getting out for a run in harder than the run. Ex: Text from Tim day 96: “My flight was scheduled to get in last night at 9:15, so I thought I would have time to run when I got home. Ended up getting in at 11:00 pm so I had to run a mile, in my jeans, in the rain, in the wind, under surveillance by the airport security, on the top level of the airport parking lot. And strangely, it was one of my most fulfilling runs”
  • It’s a good excuse to catch up on some podcasts.
  • I am a morning person and get up early to take Henry out regardless so it’s not too hard to add at least 2km to the morning routine if it was not a scheduled run day.
  • For fitbit fans, it will help give you your steps.
  • It helped keep me active during my ‘off season’. (ha, that makes me sound like I’m legit). I had a half marathon in January but other than that, I’ve been pretty chill (lazy) with training.
  • It’s not far. Really.

Why doesn’t everyone run a mile a day?

… Although I strongly recommend streaking, I am thinking about ending this streak. Here’s why:

  • I’m an addict. Like I said, it becomes addictive (especially when you have a co-conspirator). If I don’t stop now, I may never.
  • I can be obsessive and competitive about stuff like this (this may not be a shock to some) I wore a hand-me-down fitbit for a week and it did not go well… It was during the peak of marathon training and I constantly tried to out step my ‘friends’ and even got 50,000 steps in one day. I was way too aggressive for a friendly challenge.
  • I’m tired. Maybe it’s winter, maybe it’s the daily 5:30 am wake-ups but it’s starting to get to me.
  • I want to train for another marathon and/or work harder on speed-work and have read and learnt that rest days are as important as training days.
  • I’m thinking I could try a new 100 day streak… like #plankstreak?

What do you think? Would you try a run streak? Have you? How many days count as a streak?

Should I keep going?

I will let you know what I decide. Below, Florida – when Tim and I took the Monkey Taxi with the families instead of running to the restaurant.IMG_2455psst. If you like what you’re reading, please subscribe and share. xomeg

three’s a charm. right?

I have finally decided to give the full marathon another go. It has been eight years and a lot has changed. Like, when I did marathon’s 1 and 2, I lived in Montreal, I didn’t have a kid, I didn’t have a dog*, I didn’t have any major commitments, I would go for a 3 hour run and no one really noticed (Mike was often still sleeping), I didn’t have GPS (I would make Mike drive around the city the night before a long run calculating distances with the car’s odometer. Actually, one of the only things that remains the same since that last time I ran a marathon is the car. Go VW!

I am now +8 years older and although my life is not thaaaat hectic (I mean really, I only have 1 kid and 1 dog and a supportive husband who lets me run as much as I want) it is still hard to fit in all of the training. I have kept up with running and enjoy doing a bunch of races every year but it’s been on my mind to do another full. Yes, it will be hard and yes I may will curse many times during the 42 kilometres but I get a t-shirt and chocolate milk at the finish line so I think it’s worth it.

Marathon 1 was epic. Philadelphia. Mike, my sister and my brother-in-law came for support and my parents and aunt surprised me by driving all the way from Nova Scotia to cheer me on. There is no better way to see a new city than run around it for four hours. Long story short, I finished in 4 hours and 16 minutes and mustered just enough energy to stumble up the Rocky stairs at the finish line for a fist pump. Marathon 2 was not so epic. Montreal. Mike and Henry cheered from what was literally our backyard. It was a course I had run almost every day and I was recovering from an ankle injury. I managed to finish in 4 hours 9 minutes and the highlight was the last 500 metres… we finished by running into the Olympic Stadium. The closest I will get to Olympic glory.

So what will marathon 3 bring? Well, I should start by registering. All talk no action. The plan is PEI – a little sentimental because it’s where I ran my first half. I know some others who plan to run but sadly, I am doing the full alone. I have been told to expect rolling hills and lonely trails. I really hope ‘rolling’ is an exaggeration and that my summer of HHH Training (Halifax’s Hellish Hills) will pay off. I am also hoping the wind will be much tamer than a certain red head we all know!

Now, as for goals… I have decided to set 5… the most realistic goals are listed first.

  1. Register
  2. Finish
  3. Finish in 4 hours and 30 minutes
  4. Get a personal best of 4 hours and 8 minutes
  5. Finish under 4 hours

Okay, #5 is pushing it for me… and I know that but I think it is important to aim high as you never know what you are capable of… and speaking of… I don’t win often… actually, I’ve never won before, but I did and now you can too! Wanna score a copy of Runner’s World Training Journal? I won a copy but I don’t think I need it. If someone out there wants to put it to use, please send me a message. I am addicted to my Nike+ Running and Runner’s World Smart Coach apps so I will just stick to using those.

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And one final thing. I am working on a playlist. I try to pick songs that are fun, upbeat, nostalgic a little trendy and a lot cheesy. So here is what I have so far… Full disclosure: I don’t usually listen to most of this stuff but I do like it. Yes, even Pitbull! If you have any suggestions, I am eager to hear them as this playlist will start repeating before I finish. And don’t worry, Eye of the Tiger will be added for race day.

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Hopefully all will go well with the last month of training and I can make it to the start so I can get to the finish. Good luck if you have a race coming up too!

psst. If you are reading this and are thinking, gee i’d love to join Meghan for a 42 km tour of potato island, please join me! I’d love a buddy. I’ll even buy you a chocolate milkshake at the finish line in Charlottetown.

psst. If you like what you’re reading, please subscribe and share. xomeg

*Henry (the dog) was around for marathon 2 and was actually a great training companion. He now prefers sniffing and walking more than running.