Running regression


As you might suspect from the insanely original title of this post, I am facing a bit of a running regression at the moment.  I think it is down to reduced fitness. I quite the personal trainer about a month ago now. M said he wouldn’t pay for it anymore as it wasn’t “working” ie I wasn’t getting skinny enough. And then he said he would and then he said he wouldn’t and then we were separating and it just isn’t in my budget when I already have a gym membership anyway.

But the gym isn’t so easy as the toddler doesn’t go well with people she doesn’t know – the only way we can change that is to make her go more often but it’s a bit of  trial and I feel bad at the moment as she is spending more time without me due to the separation and it is making her more clingy. I don’t want to push her.

This leaves running as about the only thing I am able to fit in of late and I’m not getting to it all that often. It’s not like I can get up at 6am anymore and go for a run now that there is no other adult in the house. That would entail leaving the kids here to fend for themselves and I am pretty sure that sort of behaviour would get me arrested. So I run when I can.

A couple of weeks ago I went out to do my current interval on the Couch to 10k program I have been doing for pretty much forever. My current program stage is 8 min running, 2 mins walking x 4.

I couldn’t finish it.

Then I went again a few days later and finished it but my times were slow. Much slower than what I was running just a month ago.

Then yesterday I went out again, still on that same interval. I left at 730am in an effort to beat the heat but it was a hot day and I just couldn’t finish it. Times were slow again.

So today I went out and yet again, I did that same 8min / 2min interval program. This time I was determined to finish it. And I did – YAY! But my times still blow. I am running around 6m/km now, as opposed to around mid 5s previously. It makes me so sad. It is truly amazing how much our other fitness activities impact our running speed. Just by reducing my strength work my speed has slowed right down.

I did have a good little bump today though.

I ran:

  1. 6’05
  2. 6’06
  3. 6’30
  4. 5’55

Now they all totally suck for me. BUT the amazing thing about this is that I did not want to run that last interval and it was my fastest. I really had to talk myself into it and keep up the positive self talk all the way through it but something about that helped me pick up the pace and improve on the first interval out of the gate by 10sec! That’s quite an improvement in running terms.

I even had to run into a notherly wind for half the time too.

The other thing I did differently today was change the 2min walking interval to a slow jog – around the 7’30/8 min /km pace. I figured this was a good way to increase fitness and also a good way to build my continuous running. It also tricks me into just continuing to run. Sometimes when I stop to walk I just lose the motivation to start again. Run/walk is a strategy that works for many but I do find I am more likely to give up if I use it when exhausted. And slow jogging actually does allow you to catch your breath and that is really the goal of the slower interval. So I’m going to do that from now on – slow jog the walking intervals. I look pretty dumb doing it – people must think why doesn’t she just walk but whatever. I’m doing it.

Anyway I just wanted to share all that as we all have our regression moments and I think it helps to realise you’re so not alone in them. It is especially helpful if you are new to something like running and you think you suck at it as suddenly you are having a regression. You don’t suck at it. It’s normal. Things like the other exercise we do, how we sleep and the way we eat all impact our ability to perform at our absolute best when we run. And giving up ain’t going to make you run any faster anyway so you might as well just keep putting that one foot in front of the other.

9 thoughts on “Running regression”

  1. He wasn’t going to pay because it “wasn’t working”?!?! I have so many things I could say about that, but I’ll try to be a nice person and keep it to myself. Use your imagination.
    I’m glad you’ve kept plugging along even when you haven’t wanted to!! I keep telling myself that I want to get out and walk, but man it went from hot and humid to cold and windy here. Would have been nice to have some good in between nice weather! Stupid weather!

    1. Oh yeah I know, it’s disgusting. Now you can get a glimpse of why we have ended up separated. I just couldn’t tolerate that crap anymore!!

      Bummer about the weather. I hope you get a few unexpected nice days in there before the real cold arrives.

  2. Ah, you always make me smile 🙂

    “I am pretty sure that sort of behaviour would get me arrested.” Hahaha!

    I know it must be tough when you really want to work out and it’s just so hard fitting it around family life. At least running IS something that can be squeezed in here and there, unlike the gym (gawd, my membership is still suspended from when I got pregnant with baby F – at some point they are going to come and chase me down for that). And yes – I totally agree with you. And it is so disheartening seeing your times slip back, or feeling really tired. I’ve done one run since the GSR and it was super slow and I was knackered. My motivation has dropped right off and it’s because I feel like I’m losing fitness by the hour. But actually I think there is more of an ebb and flow to it and I should just ignore that and get back out there. Let’s stick at it – we can do this!

    And the PT not working???!! Good grief. Everyone knows that you can’t actually transform yourself in six weeks, right? I know we all buy into the plans and the schedules, but real change takes months, if not years of consistency. Our bodies respond like oil tankers trying to turn around in the ocean. No faster. He can’t expect anything else!!

    1. We CAN do this. We are mums who run dammit so we just need to keep at it! You are right, it really does ebb and flow quite a bit. I’m still bummed about my stupid slow times. Ha!

      Oh yeah the not working rubbish. He’s a dick. I was actually getting some really nice toning and strength going on which was kinda cool. Probably all gone now though!!

  3. Slow is still moving forward, and sometimes when I get stressed over the fact that I have slowed down, I look back at how far I’ve come. Sure I’ve slowed down, but apparently it is easy to run faster for 2 miles than it is for 6! 🙂 You got this. You really do, slow and steady wins the race, and right now, with all you have in your life, I am a big believer in small, sustainable changes. Take the pressure off of yourself, and if you have 30 minutes, then just run 30 minutes and screw the time, just enjoy it!

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