half training week twelve: here for the savasana

I don't even really remember what happened last week, as I'm writing this mid-week the following week. Good thing I have Strava to track my runs. My free time is scarce and I've been filling it with running or reading Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain. He's so eloquent, I highly recommend his book! It was really interesting, I found myself staying up to read it and that seldom happens.

Time management is getting even more difficult as we inch toward autumn, and the sun sets earlier. I have been getting home around 8 pm the past few weeks and it's already dark outside. Should I get a headlamp so I can run the ravine trail, or just stick to the streets? Due to my lack of headlamp at the moment, I have been sticking to the streets. Ugh. The streets, full of cars that completely kill my vibe, especially when they're driving at high speeds. There is a part of the 10k route I ran on Wednesday that goes on a bridge above the highway and it's a little unnerving - cars zooming beneath and beside me...why can't I just be alone in nature?

I had previously written about the importance of time management but it was summertime and living was easy. It's great that the weather is cooling but terrible that the sun is setting earlier. Perhaps I should try to wake up prior to the crack of dawn and get my run in then...but when I try to wake up, it's so much easier to just stay in bed for an extra five minutes. It's so much easier to not.

You'd think (and I thought) that as my training progresses, it would get easier for me to get outside. However, that is not the case. Yes, I am finding it easier to run longer distances but it's still just as difficult to drag myself out the door some days, especially when I'm already so pooped from work and the commute home. I just have to remind myself how much I love running and how great it makes me feel - the wind in my hair and bugs flying into my face...ok, maybe not the latter, but how great it is to be outside, focused on breathing and noticing everything around me.

A recap of last week:
Monday - 5.7k, 7:31/km
Hot af, easy paced run.

Tuesday/Thursday - rest

Wednesday - 10.2k, 6:05/km
Running on the street, so many lights, so many cars...

Friday - cross (softball)
My hand-eye coordination is not so good, but we had a softball game for a work social. It was a lot of fun! I can get into it...sprinting for short periods of time and chilling in the out field? Sounds great.

Saturday - cross (hot yoga)
Today seemed like a good day to practice. It was a bit chilly outside so the heat would do me well. All the chaturangas made my shoulders sore the day after. It's been a while since I practiced in the hot room and it felt great to get back on the mat, especially letting everything sink in during my post-practice savasana. We can all use a little more savasana in our lives. Everything is so rushed, we should just slow it down a bit. I have made an intention to practice more frequently. There is something about being on the mat that melts everything else away and you're just left with your breath and sharing the positive energy of everyone practicing with you.

Sunday - 16.3k, 6:43/km
It was weirdly warm out. To prepare myself for the long run, I plugged in and listened to a podcast that was recommended to me - Love + Radio's The Living Room. It was heavy and made me really sad, but was a great listen. I would recommend listening to it not while running...maybe sitting on your couch or in bed and ready to shed a tear or two. After the podcast, I had to unplug, my earbuds became slightly suffocating? I don't know how to properly describe how I was feeling but I immediately felt better being free of audio and just getting lost in my thoughts. Then I actually got lost and ended up by the edge of the Credit River.

As an aside, I listen to another podcast called Note to Self and they chronicled something called the Bored and Brilliant Challenge, which is essentially a challenge for people to reduce their cellphone use to increase mindfulness. It's a week-long challenge and every day there is something different that you do with your phone usage (i.e. tracking your screen time for a day, not texting for a day, deleting an app for a day, etc.) I'm going to give it a try, because sometimes I feel like I have a mild mobile addiction, especially now that my phone lights up every time I get a notification...it makes me look, even if I don't unlock my phone...I still look. I should really disable that. Will update on this.

There is one street that goes across without stop lights for a very long time which is a good thing, but also bad because no breaks. At one of the crosswalks I ran past a fellow runner and felt the urge to give him a high five as we ran past each other. I didn't do it...but I will next time. I love it when we encourage one another - be it through a nod, smile or kind word. We should do it more often. Share the ~positive energy~

As of today, the race is in EIGHT DAYS! Getting antsy.