Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Burnt Out

Right now the thought of training for another race makes me cringe.

I have been training for some race or other pretty much non-stop for the last two years and I need a break.

I'm physically and mentally burnt out on following rigid training plans with certain workouts prescribed for certain days. It's gotten to the point where running stresses me out instead of destresses me.

I stress about fitting in long runs and hitting certain times during my speedwork. I stress that I'm not getting any faster and that maybe I'm not dedicated enough.

That's got to stop. Running is not supposed to be an added stress in my life.

I miss running for the sake of running because running was fun and I enjoyed it. Somewhere along the line, I got so focused on racing and setting PRs that I lost a bit of the fun element in running.

I can't remember the last time I went out for a run just because it was a beautiful day and I wanted to be outside or because I had some extra energy that I wanted to kill.

Every run for the past two years has been some form of speedwork, a long run or a dedicated easy day. Even the runs I did with friends were always scheduled to match up with my training plan.

I still have the Baltimore 10 Miler coming up in the middle of June. My mom and I registered a while back and my coworker and her friend are running it too. I'm treating this like just another fun long run and not like a race. It's going to be hot and it's a hilly course. I'm not looking to break any time records and I'm not going to follow a training plan. I'm just going to run.

This summer I'm going to back off the training and I'm going to run for fun. Hopefully that means weekend runs with my friends and a couple of runs during the week on my own. But I'm not going to stress about it. I'll run when I'm in the mood and if I miss a day or want to make plans on the weekend that don't involve long runs, I'm not going to have a panic attack about it.

I need to get back to a place where running is fun and not a source of stress in my life. I've got enough to stress about as it is, I don't need running adding to that.

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