Happy 2016 Friends! We had a wonderful time ringing in the New Year here in VT. Mother Nature also decided to come out of hiding and cast white stuff down upon us finally. Last year we had a pretty brutal winter. The snow wasn't that bad, it was more the cold and bitter temperatures that challenged us. For many of us runners the unwelcoming weather conditions do not stop us from getting out there and doing our runs. I have been happy that December was so warm and cannot complain that winter has finally arrived. I am hoping spring decides to grace us with her presence early as well. Until the I will bundle up and pound that pavement no matter what the conditions.
This means I get to use me new winter running shoes. A proper shoe for winter conditions is really important if you plan to stay on your feet an injury free. A couple years back I invested in a pair of Salomon trail shoes that were awesome. It was time again for a new pair and even though I have to admit I looked at a few other brands I ended up going with the Salmon Speedcross 3. The first time I took them out it took some getting use to. Now that I have gotten to put a few miles on them I really like them. The tread is like a snow tire, they hug my feet, keep me warm and grip the road. Of coarse I still have to be cautious as I run and my time is slower than I like.
Which leads me to hating my slower times! I know I need to be safe and realize this is only temporary. Yet I am a bit obsessive with writing down each run, miles and time. When I look down at my Garmin and see that I am 30 seconds to a minute behind what a normal pace would be for me it does get to me. I have worked hard at getting to a pace that I am proud of and like challenging that pace and pushing myself. I know a run is still a run and getting out there in the winter months means I need to change some of my own expectations of myself. I am not in control of the weather or conditions. The bottom line is staying safe and having fun on my runs. Letting that go is something I need to work on and I know this.
At the end of November I talked about "Taking The Focus Off Of Running". Now it is time to put that in affect. It is time for me to dedicate some time to my cross and strength training on the days I am forced to stay inside. To be a better runner we have to be sure to take care of every part of our body. This means working different muscle groups in order to perform better when we are out on our run. A few important benefits of cross training is that it helps to prevent injury, allows your body to rest and recover from your runs and increase a runners performance with power and efficiency. I strive to be a better runner with each run. It has nothing to do with anyone else but myself. When I first started running I only ran. Once I added in strength training I saw a difference in the way I ran and felt withing my runs. Over the next couple of months I will be putting in more time to cross train before I start training for my Half Marathons in a couple of months. In retrospect I am in training mode, working on being stronger and more flexible for those runs.
Last week I talked about my goals for 2016 . I was able to get one last run in for 2015 and finished with a total of 1,444 miles. That ended the year for me with 255 more miles than last year. To add to my 2016 goals I would like to hit 1,500 for the year. It's a new year with so much to look forward to. I am excited to see where this year will take me physically and mentally. Working on being a better runner means I am also a better mother, partner, friend and a happier and healthier version of who I aspire to be. I am a work in progress, there is always room for improvement and growth. I am ready to work on all of it!
Happy New Year! What are your goals for the following year?
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