In my last post I mentioned my blog space was nearing its max, and I decided a week or so ago to bite the bullet and upgrade to the next level. The irony is that I have hit a bit of the December slump, and while I have things in my brain I would love to write about, few of them are happy go lucky. The nature of this blog however is that I share the good, the not so good, and the sweaty. On Thanksgiving day I decided to start a run streak, where I run everyday until the first of the year.
The idea was not mine, I saw it in a Runners World article, but I had always wanted to do a run streak so I figured why not.
I am 27 days into the streak, and there have only been one or two days where I really struggled to get out the door. My basement is in the process of a looonnggg renovation, which means my treadmill was shunned to the garage. I spent 21 of these days running outside, until Duncan helped me maneuver the treadmill in the garage so I could use it. What a luxury that machine is.
I did enjoy running outside most days, but the snow days were a bit rough.
The goal is to run at least a mile, and I would say the majority of these days I have done just that – one mile. Workdays I don’t usually enjoy doing too much of a workout because my job is very physical, but one mile is always manageable. I find that I enjoy that quick ten minutes (and some change) of movement before the day starts. The day I struggled the most with the streak was a day I also went for a 5.5 mile hike.
I ended up running down the mountain some, likely not a full mile, but it still counts towards the streak in my book.
The intention of the streak is to keep your body moving during the winter months when temptation to be sedentary is high, however the streak is really whatever you make of it. For me, this streak is to keep my mental health on track. Running has become such a blessing of an outlet for me this last year to keep my anxiety at bay. The darker months I am visited by anxieties step sister depression if I am not keeping busy enough (or sometimes just because), and running has been very helpful there too.
I stopped running for a few years when I was first diagnosed with my autoimmune disease because I noticed running would cause my symptoms to flare up. This year I have managed to find a good balance with the sport, ensuring I can continue to run more frequently. My biggest concern this last year however was my chronic sciatica pain. For a full year I woke up every single day in pain or discomfort from a slipped disc issue. I truly thought the pain would never subside.
Thankfully I have been pain free since July/August. I still feel the nerve, as if it has been scarred by the pinching, but the pain is no longer. I sat in my favorite chair recently, one I could not sit in for a year, and realized the joy I felt sitting with no pain.
Side note: when running outside I am never without my GoGuarded handheld. This is not sponsored, this is just me sharing my must have while running. Highly recommend for all women. Go buy one. Or gift one. It’s a must. Sadly.
Running also helped me during the time our water heater was out of commission, as I briefly mentioned in my last post. I went 35 or so days without hot water, meaning quicker showers than you can say the word shower. Going for a run before showering helped me get in the cold water because my body was hot and craved cooling. Now that I have access to warm showers again, dare I say I miss the cold? What I don’t miss is strategizing taking a shower.
My mind appreciates the lack of thought going into showering. Another luxury I didn’t realize I had until I didn’t have it.
Going forward I don’t see myself continuing a run streak after the 39 days are up, but I do see myself chasing bigger goals. I would love to run another half marathon someday, and I think with realistic pacing goals and proper rest this could be a reality. The last 27 days have made me physically and mentally stronger. It’s been a special treat I have given to myself as a reminder that I am capable of difficult things, and difficult things have indeed arose.
The changing of the season moving into winter is a time for us to look inward. Finding outlets and tools to continue moving forward is essential for me. I recently turned down a great job opportunity because it didn’t feel like the right fit. After I made this choice I fell down the spiral of worrying how this choice would appear to societal standards – something I have continuously moved away from for nearly a decade. I choose a nontraditional lifestyle and nontraditional jobs because life is about so much more than money to me.
I felt momentarily weak after this decision, but running pulled me out of that pity party real quick.
All of this babbling is to say life is hard. Being a human is hard. There is no easy button, but there are ways to make the journey more tolerable. For me those things are typically physical (running, biking, hiking, traveling), and for you those things might look different. We are all on the same floating ball just trying to get by. I do my best to find small joys in my day to day life, and a dopamine hit in the morning sure makes that easier.
Q: What is your outlet of choice?
34 thoughts on “Run Streak”
Congratulations! 🙂 Now your post reminds me that I ought to go back to my daily workouts haha!
Yes! Your body and mind will thank you. Unless they’re craving rest, because that’s good for you too!
Well done on your run streak!
Thank you! It’s been fun.
Mimi Kent Bohm
You’re so inspiring! Thank you for blogging and sharing.
Oh gosh. That’s so nice. Thank you for reading and commenting. ❤️
Grace @ Cultural Life
I’m glad running is helping you. It can be a hard time of the year and these dark evenings aren’t my favourite, thankfully the days start getting lighter after tomorrow. Winter solstice, yay! Due to knee issues, I can’t run (love hiking though), but my 2023 goal is to get back to my regular Pilates routine. I need an exercise outlet to de-stress. Especially as the upcoming holiday season has already had some stresses — mainly pressure from family when I’m also trying to factor in my needs and seeing my partner during the festive season. I hope you have a relaxing break and a few days off work.
I need to get back into more yoga, I adore it.
I hope you find a balance and good boundaries with your family to support you and your needs!
I think it’s ok to mourn that job you didn’t take. Afterall, to launch yourself toward an authentic life often means leaving things you no longer need behind. Good for yuh ou, intrepid woman!
My outlet is writing fiction, which most of the pragmatics in my life don’t understand.🤗
I think you said this perfectly. There is a bit of a brief mourning with is so interesting.
As long as your outlet makes you happy that’s all that matters!
Great motivating post. I’ve been there with the tough decision on a job. Usually if it feels like you can’t turn it down it’s the right move. If not, it probably isn’t.
Thank you, it’s not always easy, but I don’t regret the decision I made.
Merry Christmas to you & yours! Thank you for sharing a little of your life and travels throughout another year. May the new year ahead bring many more adventures!
Thank you for following along and for your comment. ❤️
OMG. So much to say. First. trust your instincts about turning down the job. I turned down several promotions during my career in favor of living a sane life. Never regretted it.
In my marathoning days, I used to run 70 miles a week. I tried a streak of 5 miles per day and had to stop after three weeks. It turned my legs to lead. Over time. I found that I was actually stronger running 60 miles per week with a day off than 70. The extra ten were junk miles. My running friends and I used to say that running less than 5 miles was pointless because we’d spend almost as much time warming up and cooling down as we did running.
Running and bicycling have this in common: it’s about the mind, not the body. I feel bad when I see someone running or riding with headphones on. They’re missing the point.
Lomg ago. I lived in RI. Jimmy Doyle co-owned a sporting goods store in Pawtucket with his brother Bobby. (Bobby placed in the top 10 at the Boston Marathon one year.) Jimmy had a streak of many years length. I think his minimum daily run was 3 or 5 miles. He had an appendectomy and still kept his streak going! One day a kid came into the store and stole a baseball glove. The kid took off on foot. Jimmy and Bobby gave chase knowing that this kid couldn’t possibly outrun them. Needless to say they caught him and got the glove back.
I love your comments. After a week has passed with the job, I don’t regret my decision. It’s definitely a weird place to be when I know what I want and need, yet sometimes feel like I need to chase something else. I’m thankful I don’t make big jumps like that in life.
Your description of marathoning days is exactly why I don’t want to forever do a streak. Rest is so imperative to better running. GRANTED…I have multiple days where I am “only” running one mile, and my other days I am usually between 2-4 miles, but that is what feels good for me with a streak.
Although if it means I can outrun children I may consider keeping it going, not that I feel strongly enough about things at REI getting stolen by small humans. Who knows what kids have guns these days.
I can’t imagine running in the snow, I can barely walk in it! Congratulations on doing your running streak. My partner and I did a walking streak a few years ago that was started by our local paper. It was fun for 30 days. Now I can’t walk much because it makes my hip hurt…getting old!
There was one day I didn’t want to run on the icy street, so I ran circles on a field by my house covered in snow. It was the worst experience and I only ran one mile. So, so difficult!
I love a good walking streak, I try to do as much as I can because I know one day I too will have to slow it down.
Go you! And thank you for the recommendation of GoGuarded. Enjoy the run down to January 1st and I look forward to your next self-challenge!! Happy Solstice Eve.
Thank you! Happy holidays to you and your hubby.
Love that you are finding balance with running again! I’m a few weeks out from my first marathon since 2019…i finished my first 22 miler in years last Saturday and felt so proud of myself. If more people ran, I’m sure we would have a more stable world… The peace it brings along with the fulfillment, there is nothing like it 😂
YAHOOOOO. I am so excited for your race. I think you’re right, more people running or any exercise OUTSIDE would make for a happier and more stable population.
I wish my 27+ years long headache would end but have zero hope now. I am glad you are feeling better. Constant pain destroys.
Ugh, I cannot even imagine. I am so sorry you continue to struggle with this.
Right now walking, biking and swimming. Go get that exercise. It’s been a battle lately. But we try to keep going.
I understand the battle. I think setting this daily goal for me has helped to make daily exercise a habit, even on physical workdays!
One day at a time!
Yes. Some days are better than others.
All I can say is thanks for motivation! I am in a phase where I struggle to go run outside, not only in gym. Fear of being judged I guess 🙂 Also thanks for the GoGuarded recommendation!
I find just committing to a SMALL goal, even just going out for five minutes motivates me to run more often or further. Building up from there gets easier!
Hey you’re young enough to try for Ron Hill’s record streak, 19,032 days. Me I just stay accountable by logging my miles and setting targets. Happy Christmas Brittany and a pain-free 2023 and here’s to decisions made with the heart.
I think after this streak is over I will focus more on bigger goals with further miles, but who knows! I like your approach much better than running every day. I hope you had a lovely holiday!
I love that your run streak was about your mental health and how running is a positive outlet for you! That’s the way to do it!!
Hmm, as for an outlet for me, I’d say blogging is one that helps my mental health. I document life and process and overshare and love it haha.
I love it too, both reading your blog and writing my own! It’s so cathartic. Sometimes I worry I share too much, but then I remember no one HAS to read it.