Where did the fun go?

13 messages
14/02/2012 at 23:28

Hello everyone. I'm new here so if I put something in the wrong place etc I apologise! I also apologise for the length of my post.

I was hoping for some advice really - I've been running for a while but only in a twice-a-week-with-friend-gossiping-while-jogging sort of way until we decided to do a 10k in November and she mysteriously disappeared! I carried on training and did the 10k (appalling time though) and then went back to four to five miles twice a week.

Anyway, was roped in to a half marathon by another friend. Recently, so haven't had much time to train but the idea was that I could comfortably do six miles so increase by a mile a week and hey presto! A half marathon! I am running 3 or 4 times a week (sometimes substituting a long swim for a run).

Except that it snowed and then half melted and then froze solid for nearly two weeks. I ran in 2-3 inches of snow wearing yaktrax but only did six miles instead of the 9 I was supposed to be doing, and the week following that was impossible to run properly so my two shorter runs were slow and annoying. The next weekend's long run had to be done on a treadmill (never used on before). I only managed 7.7 miles which is where I was before the snow and it took me er... 1:50 (oh, that looks so bad when I write it down like that!).

Monday I managed 9 miles and decided that I hate running.

Anyhoo, all that was a ridiculously long prelude to my question - where did the fun go? What am I doing wrong and how the heck am I going to run 13 miles in less than four weeks?

15/02/2012 at 09:15

I think you are stressed worrying about whether you will manage the half or not, and that fact that the weather means that you haven't been able to follow your schedule.

Do you run with the friend that got you enthused about the half marathon?

You could try joining a club if you prefer running with other people.

Or, if that isn't practical, make the next couple of runs ones that you just do for fun. Don't look at your watch, don't worry about time, run somewhere you haven't run before, take it slow, doesn't matter how slow, and just enjoy being outside in milder weather. See what wildlife you can spot if you can run in a park/countryside

15/02/2012 at 12:34

Hi Ali. I think most runners spit their dummies out at some time and decide that they hate running, usually when things havent gone quite to plan. I know I do!!!  You used to have fun running and it is only your mind telling you that you hate it.

You just have to get out that door and start again. As mathschick said, you are looking to get the fun back..... go and do it..... just have a couple of runs that are fun... what about your favourite course... go out into the countryside and run there......... go and check the wildlife which is ready to bloom.

The snow will have affected your times and your motivation. Once you are out there again with no snow, you will get everything back. Its just a case of doing it, and getting back into it.

15/02/2012 at 13:03
the biggest suggestion i can give is to join a local club.
I was getting so so bored with running by myself, the same routes, tedious pace and a couple of times i ended up running past my local club and thinking hhhhhhhhmmm that'd be different.

couple of weeks later i plucked up the courage to turn up to their beginners night and i've not looked back since....i love it, awesome bunch with the same interest as me.
My running has improved no end, there is always someone quicker than you to chase down, speed sessions, hill sessions, other people's knowledge of the area, team events and relays to enter, its great.

if you dont want to join a club you could always just mix your stuff up a bit, do your own speed session, some fartlek work using lamp posts, do some hills.....anything just to break it up and you'll get much more benefit from doing endless almost pointless mileage to boot.
15/02/2012 at 14:18
Not supposed to be fun. Stop your winging and get out there and RUN!
15/02/2012 at 14:23
of course its meant to be hard work (if you're training for racing etc and want to improve) but i think you still have to enjoy it too...
15/02/2012 at 15:24

Yeah, sorry, only joking! Of course you got to enjoy running, otherwise what's the point.

Ali - you've had a setback, and lost your mojo. If you are anxious about the 1/2 marathon you could defer and enter another one where you've got more time to train....or enter a few more 10k's so you are more comfortable with that distance before stepping up.

15/02/2012 at 15:46
Ali - I sometimes get anxious and full of self-doubt. The best thing to deal with that is to say to yourself that you will give it your best shot, if you have to walk some of the HM so what? Lots of people do a run/walk strategy even for a 10K, so just go for it, you will feel fantastic when you have achieved it.
15/02/2012 at 15:53

Ali - I like the above suggestions about just getting out and enjoying the next couple of runs, either a fave run or something new and different.

As for completing the half marathon, you'll be fine. I did my first half off a longest run of 9 miles. My legs did start to hurt a little after 11 miles but when you get to 12 you know you're going to finish. You've still got time to get that long run up to 11 miles in the next couple of weeks before tapering.

Good luck!

15/02/2012 at 18:24
I did a half last year (my first) which, truth be told, I was completely underprepared for. I finished in 2.20 which was much slower than I wanted to be, but... it doesn't really matter. I'm doing another half next month which I already feel better prepared for, and I know I can get a big PB.

Maybe even have a week off running and swim or cycle instead. I tend to lose my mojo when I get tired and a few evenings in the pool sorts me out and gives my legs a bit of a rest from the impact.
15/02/2012 at 18:25

Thank you everyone. I think you're right, I'm stressing when I think about the half marathon and running on my own has gotten lonely.

I can't run with the friend who's doing the half with me (because she's in Notts and I'm in Suffolk). I'd like to join the club my family belong to in the next town but their training night coincides with my late shift. However, I'm going to take people's advice and check out the local club here. It's got a reputation for being particularly competitive and has a long string of very good runners to its name but I'm hoping there will also be a contingent who are happy to plod along at the back!

I was planning on going for a 5 miler tonight but am going to scrap that in favour of an old favorite through country lanes in the morning. Haven't been able to run it since about October as my running is done around work in the evenings so it's too dark but have a day off tomorrow!

I suspect hanging around the forums will help get my enthusiasm back too - thank you again!

15/02/2012 at 18:52
hope you enjoy your run tomorrow
15/02/2012 at 20:42
Thanks mathschick

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