Sunday, October 13, 2013

I'm Still Waiting For Those "Morning Person" Hormones To Kick In...

Weekly mileage: 24 miles (two 4-milers, two 5-milers, and one 6-miler)

I can't get over how awesome running was this week. I don't know if it was the weather, excess energy from studying all day, steroids, or a combination of the three, but I was definitely channeling a Xena Warrior Princess/Amazonian-type superwoman. Yesterday I checked my Garmin after what felt like a pretty easy 6 miles and was shocked to discover that I ran it at 9:50 pace, only slightly slower than my marathon tempos this past spring. I'm back, baby!

The changing leaves also made for nice running company.

Fern Ridge path. It's actually kind of a disgusting place, but it has its moments.

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Since classes started a couple of weeks ago, I've been trying to figure out where running fits into it all. I haven't had any trouble getting out there (in fact, I've never appreciated running more!), but there have been a few days where I've honestly had no idea when the miles were going to get done. More than once, I've left my house at 7:30, running clothes in tow, and returned 12 or 13 hours later with them unworn.* Those days, I'm forced to run in semi-darkness because Eugene is crazy and has, like, four streetlights. On a related note, I need to buy a headlamp.

Now, there is a very obvious solution to this. That hasn't escaped me. I am WELL aware that "running in the morning" is something that people do. While I sit around whining about waking up at the god-forsaken hour of 7:00 a.m., millions of other, much more hardcore people than I are busting out 20-milers at 4:00 a.m. I'm not that person, though. In fact, I'm the antithesis of that person. Waking up 3+ hours before I have to be somewhere (to eat, digest, run, shower, and commute) is my idea of hell.

In a perfect world, I'd incorporate my run into my commute to school. When I lived in New York, this is how 90% of my runs got done. It was a great set-up: running the five miles to work was quicker than taking the subway, and infinitely more pleasant. Running also meant that I could shower after entering an air-conditioned sanctuary, which was way better than "I just showered an hour ago but commuting in this disgustingly hot swamp that is New York has soaked my entire body in sweat." The very best thing about this situation was that I didn't have to wake up any earlier in order to get it done. Wins all around!

The thing about that job, though, was that I didn't need anything once I got there. No books, no brain... Nothing. A couple of times I forgot crucial pieces of work attire (one embarrassing day spent in spandex and a sweatshirt comes to mind. That shit doesn't fly in New York), but that problem was easily solved by stashing an extra outfit in my desk.

College, on the other hand, requires you to bring so many things. Computer? Essential. Micro textbook? Necessary. Macro textbook? Yep, need that. Oh, and let's not forget the stats textbook! And food. More food than a single human should be able to eat. Add clothes into the mix and you've got enough to fill a giant backpack and accompanying tote bag. There's no way that much stuff is going into my tiny running backpack. I don't have any place to store stuff on campus, either, so that's not an option. Oh, woe is the hobby jogger!

So what's a whiny, tired girl like myself to do? I'm not sure. For now I'm fitting my runs in where I can and hoping for the best. I'm also waiting for the hormones that allow you to wake up at 4:00 a.m. to kick in. That's what happens when you age, right? Or are you people just, like, better than I am?

*[I feel the need to clarify that my grad school strategy is to treat school like a job, which means work, work, work from at least 9:00-to-5:00. No mid-afternoon runs for me!]

 TOO PRETTY.

Happy Sunday, friends!

11 comments:

  1. I am so glad to see you in my feed! It makes me very happy :)
    Headlamps are good things to own for us later in the day runners. I do the mornings and I like them, but I also really enjoy running after a full day of work. I think mixing it up here and there is a good thing. Also-I am impressed with your grad school strategy. Good luck keeping it up and let us know how it goes!

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    1. Gee, thanks, Amy! Likewise!

      I've totally failed to go get a headlamp, but I have done a few runs with a dinky flashlight. I haven't broken anything yet, so that's a good sign. Must. Get. Headlamp.

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  2. Honestly, I'm pretty much a fan of the "you have to do something that works for YOU" theory. In other words, while early workouts might work for lots of us, if they leave you cranky, over-tired, and resentful...they just won't work.

    Might I be ridiculously annoying and instead suggest that you just embrace evening running (and buy the headlamp!)? Alternatively, if your schedule permits - and when the weather gets cool - lunchtime runs might work. Finally, you could always bring your clothes, head out at 5 or 6 for your run, then come back for a few more hours of work. This way, it's not super dark or super late. And when I was in grad school, I found that going home was a massive dead zone - I'd lose motivation and/or just way more time than necessary if I stopped home before an evening workout. So on the off-chance I was planning one (once every few weeks, I didn't like 'em much), I'd change at work, drive home, get out of my car, and run - without even going into my apartment. I found that this expedited things, somewhat.

    In other news, glad to see a check-in. Glad to see some happy runs. Glad to see you, and here's to hoping school is going smoothly.

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    1. That's not ridiculously annoying-that's sage advice! I just feel like there's so much pressure to BE A BADASS, RUN IN THE MORNING, blah blah blah. But as someone who's got a host of sleeping problems, losing even more time to sleep sounds like a terrible strategy.

      I really want to start getting in a run at 5:00 and then come back to work some more (as you suggested), but the logistics of finding a shower and bringing enough food to last for second breakfast, lunch, and dinner is pretty daunting. I'll figure something out!

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  3. I've never been a morning runner either. It seems like a bizarre form of torture to me.

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    1. Ahaha, right on! Night runners unite!

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  4. Those pictures are so pretty! Eh forget treating grad school like work and go for that afternoon run! Grad students are supposed to be on campus in their little office until like 2 AM each night, right? But if that's not your cup of tea (or whatever you drink...) then I second Holly's suggestion to invest in a headlamp and embrace evening running. Maybe you will see another lone runner out who might want a running buddy? I am a mostly evening runner (minus weekend long runs) and I like having my run to look forward to at the end of my day.

    For the record: yes, those people that get up at 4 AM to run are better than you. They're better than me, too. Best we just accept it and move on.

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    1. Ahaha, yeah, I'm far too old to keep up the schedule I had as an undergrad. Once 10:00 hits, my brain is pretty much done. I guess i can handle it on the occasional night, but definitely not as a regular thing.

      I'm glad I'm not alone int he loser night runner club!

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  5. Grad school is a b*tch. If you find a groove tha works for you, milk it until it's dry. I love running and it definitely makes me feel good, but being able to get quality work done makes me feel even better.

    Get the headlamp guuuurl.

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    1. Agreed! Although I don't think the two are mutually exclusive-some of my best work comes post-run.

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  6. I don't know why I didn't comment on this earlier..I definitely read it RIGHT when you posted. I get super pumped when I find you in my newsfeed.

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