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About a month ago, I wrote about one of my closest friends and my regular running buddy moving away. She recently left the Nation’s Capitol to move down south. I was really nervous about how my running would be affected when I no longer had her to meet at zero dark thirty. I have serious motivation issues in the morning if I’m not meeting someone and was really nervous. I am hoping for a pretty big PR this fall in the marathon and really can’t afford to blow off (much) training. As it turns out, while I’m still really missing my friend, I’m doing okay in the run department.
What has helped me not just sit around and miss my buddy are a few small things. First I’ve been doing my long runs with a group. I started running with the group a few weeks before my friend left so it was already a well established habit. This continuity has helped motivate me during the week.
The second thing that has kept me going is the fact that I’m in the middle of a run streak. Running daily has helped me from slipping into the “I don’t wanna run” mode. It’s kept me moving, which somehow also helps my motivation. I can’t truly explain it but running every day makes me want to make sure I’m getting in my speed work/hill work and tempo runs.
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Finally doing some summer racing has been a fun way to get in my miles. I ran a (terribly humid) 5k last weekend, which I used as my speed work for the week. I got to spend time with my friends, drink wine after (best race ever!) and get my run done at the same time. I also took advantage of a package deal offered by a local running store here in DC and registered for three races for the price of two. Having those shorter races on my calendar helps me keep motivated and allows me to switch things up. It’s also fun, especially because I’m not really focusing on pace in this DC summer weather.
So while I still wish my main run buddy was just a mile away, I’ve found that keeping myself running is really just as simple as getting out the door.