Taking it "Zen."
When my running really got serious though, and the marathon training distances got longer, I had to learn how to fit it in around my work and heavy travel schedule. When my running shoes came with me on business trips around the country and overseas I needed to break myself of that time-distance "slave master" and stop obsessing over mileage, because often I had no idea how many miles I was running, only how long I'd been on the road.
San Francisco, CA
Finding myself in a strange city, without benefit of today's GPS watches or fancy mapping software, I discovered that all I had to do was just decide how many minutes I wanted to run, head out the door, run half of that, then turn around and return to where I started. I had been running long enough to have a pretty good idea of my pace and to know that if I ran for so many minutes, I'd have run an approximate number of miles. It didn't have to be exact. What a liberating concept! Ridding myself of that "distance dictator" freed me of my obsession over mileage and pace and added joy and freedom to my running.
With this new "tool" in my running tool box, I felt confident enough to run out the front door of a hotel, start my chronometer and then just...run. A number of running coach programs promote the concept of running for a particular length of time, not a particular distance, only focusing on distance for the once-a-week long run. This is what USAFit advocates, and many other running programs follow their lead.
My running friend Nelson and I did these types of runs often. He'd meet me somewhere in the city after work and we'd just run by the clock, not worrying about the distance. We'd meet, park our cars, and then head out exploring new neighborhoods, not worrying about how many miles we were covering, not worrying about our splits or our pace or about lap times. We'd simply agree to a rough time, say 60 minutes, and then just head out. When we got to 30 minutes, we'd start heading back in the general direction of our cars.
|Village of Bellville OH|
I learned that it isn't always about the distance.
It is about the time spent running.