Sunday, January 10, 2010

Stated Objectives

As a first post I thought it appropriate I spell out what my objectives are with regards to running.  Today a friend mentioned a book called Runner's World Run Less, Run Faster: Become a Faster, Stronger Runner with the Revolutionary FIRST Training Program.  My immediate reaction was "why would I want to run less?"  Sure, I want to be faster, but I wouldn't trade that for running less.  I love running and my number one priority is to do it a lot and keep it fun.  A close second is to stay injury free, but I digress.

A few months ago I started following Hal Higdon's intermediate, and now most recently, advanced half-marathon training programs.  I've seen dramatic results in how much faster I am, but I'd quit it if I was no longer having fun.  To me, running shouldn't be a chore or a task that I feel like I have to do.  If a structured program can compliment my running though, I'm on board.  So far that's been the case and I have to admit I like the routine that goes along with it.

As I mentioned previously, another object is to stay injury free.  I'm a little unconventional in my approach to avoiding injury.  I read an article somewhere a while back that suggested stretching doesn't really help or hurt athletes.  Since that time I've shied away from a stretching regimen and haven't really noticed a difference.  Not that I won't stretch, because let's face it, it feels really good sometimes.  I just don't make it a part of my routine.

Ok, maybe I'm not a huge rebel in my approach to staying healthy.  I also try to eat right and compliment my running with other activities, such as strength exercises.  I like routine and structure (just a tiny bit OCD), so it's pretty easy for me to identify things that adversely affect how I feel.  I know it will all catch up with me one day and I'll become that person I feel awful for because they're hurt, but until then I'll do what I can to prevent it.  If I have to take it easier or take a break altogether, than that's what I'll............yeah, right.

Another objective I have relates to having fun, and that's meeting and interacting with other runners.  Eventually I'll post links back to some of the people I know from running either in real life or online.  If it weren't for this community and the fellowship that comes with it, I don't know where I'd be today.  I've met some really fantastic people and hope to find more in the years to come.  I'm continually surprised by the quality of people you find in the running community.

Down on the bottom of my objectives list is getting faster.  It's on the list because I do want to; however, it won't ever take precedence over the other three.  This year alone I have gotten faster as a consequence of my other objectives and I'm thrilled.  I've achieved far more than I thought I was capable of, and hope to build upon that in the coming years.

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