Everyone has good days and bad days – days when we feel up or down. That goes for workouts as well. I haven’t been running much since the NYC Half-Marathon, mainly because I was enjoying yoga, focusing on plyometric workouts, and in general just doing stuff my body had not experienced in a while. After a few weeks of running no more than 4 miles at a time, I was ready to for a longer distance and decided to take in a beautiful New York spring day and run the 6 mile loop in Central Park.
This turned out to be a perfect example of a ‘down’ workout day for me – it was rough. Though this was less than half the distance of the Half-Marathon, it felt harder than the 13.1 miles I ran just 3 weeks ago! When you have runs like that, it helps to remind yourself that it just isn’t your day, but that you are still doing the work and benefitting your body. There was a moment after mile 4 when I stopped to stretch and give myself a breather, and I really just wanted to stop for good, but I kept on keepin’ on and finished the run. I didn’t finish strong by any means, but I felt proud that I didn’t quit or slow down, and also that I accomplished what I set out to do.
This doesn’t mean that you should push through every bad workout. If your body is really screaming at you to stop, you could be overtraining, overtired, or just need a day to do something more low key. Maybe what’s called for is a nice stroll around your neighborhood or even a day to just sit and let your body recover from a crazy workout week. Whatever it is, always listen to your body. Yeah, my run was pretty uncomfy in parts yesterday, but I know what I am capable of and I knew that I could finish those 6 miles. If you feel pain when and where you shouldn’t (maybe you pulled a muscle or otherwise injured yourself) then you should stop, but if you know your body can keep going, push yourself and see how far you can actually go. Many times, your body is capable of going much further than you ever thought possible. Just trust yourself and know that you can do it! I believe in you! Be Well!