This has been an especially good day, and the end to a great week. As I write this post, I’m tired, sore, hungry, but overall? Just happy. :-) Of course getting back into running has helped make this week so much better. After a full eight days off, I went running on Monday for the first time. It was … short. I’d rather be safe than sorry and stay away from any injuries caused by doing “too much too soon,” so I ran a quick three miles, some stretching, and called it a day. My runs the rest of the week have been just as short, but it feel oh-so-good to be back. I missed having a schedule that involved running everyday! Of course that means being busy all the time, but also plenty of time to think about what I want out of my training this winter. After ending the cross country season on such a positive note, I’ve decided to carry on some of the changes I made near the end of the season into the rest of my life, as well as running in the off-season.
1) Circuits? Say hello to Tobi’s Strength Routines.
During cross country, track, and the off-season, I always do some type of weight training. The past few years my coach has shown us new balance and strength routines. Deciding it was time again for something new, he’s gone and found a new strength routine. Instead of circuits, which are stations of different exercises and are what we normally do, we’ll now be doing Whitworth Track and Field’s Lifting Routine. Broken up into four routines per page you’re given, you mark down the amount of weight you are using for each exercise. Once you’ve done a total of twelve sessions, as you do the four routines in order, you can move onto the next sheet. Since I plan on working out in the weight room three times a week after my runs, it should take me about a month to finish the first page of routines. Seeing that I did my first session earlier today and am already feeling sore, it should be an interesting four weeks. A lot of the exercises are different from what I’m used to and the routines focus a lot more on the weight aspect of cross-training. Like I told my coach earlier when we struggling to do “Alternate Arnold Presses” and “Incline Push Pops,” we’re going to have some nice looking shoulders by the beginning of track season! Until then, bring on being sore …
2) Positive attitude? Check.
Near the end of the cross country season, I was able to relax and put myself in a state of mind before races that left me feeling more positive and relaxed about my results. Having used this mindset more often lately and finding myself happier, I’m ready to drop any negativity and pessimism that I usually struggle with, and focus more on the positive. Instead of worrying about having taken a weeks off and having to get back in shape, of worrying about what my competition is doing during their own off-season, or even if I take it easy on runs, I’ve decided that I just need to relax and enjoy everything. Why worry so much about others or what they’re doing? The off-season is a time to focus on me and becoming the best I can be. It’s a time to get stronger and set a good base for track in the spring. Not to mention that it’s a time to really look back on your goals and decided what you want to become through your training. I’m looking forward to all of this, and I can’t wait to see what’s in store. No negative, just the positive. I want to be a role model and leader on my team, as well as a good friend and teammate. After all, who wants to be around a “Negative Nelly?” Not me.
3) WANTED: Running Partner(s).
In the past, I’ve used my off-season time to run alone and truthfully? I generally drill myself into the ground and get bored by running the same routes. This year, I want to change things up. Instead of running alone all the time, I want to make sure to run with people at least three times a week. I have some of the best friends and teammate anyone could ask for and since the off-season is all about relaxed, easy runs, I want to spend time with them. Some of my favorite memories that I have with my teammates are from crazy and spontaneous runs that we’ve gone on. For me, running with others gives me a new sense of adventure, conversation outside of mumbling to myself, and being able to get to know someone on a whole different level than you would ever be able to when not running. Besides, who else will I have to complain to about the horrible weather and hard workouts to? ;-)
Being more positive, more social, and a more well-rounded runner. The winter off-season is one of my favorite times of the year, but also one of the hardest for me. Hopefully with a little bit of change and a lot of hard work, I can emerge a better runner and person from it all. One thing that I want to change, but didn’t mention above, is my writing. I don’t blog nearly enough as I’d like to, and really want to focus on writing more often, and as being as entertaining and funny as I was when I first started my blog. Going back into the archives and reading some of my very first posts has given me a different outlook on blogging and why I first started. I want to share my running experiences and not just bore you all with rants, complaining, or catch-up posts if I was to lazy or busy to write sooner. So out with the old and in with the new. I’m ready for some change and think the smile on my face, soreness in my muscles, and end to this post is a good start. We’ll see!
Until next time,
Have I ever mentioned that I love being a runner? ♥