Greetings from Minnesota. There is nothing I love better in November than mid-50’s temperatures and sunshine.
I apparently lied in the title of this post, because I’m still running in shorts. I guess I tempted fate with my bold presumption, and now I’m paying for it by enjoying mild and unseasonably warm (I think) weather 🙂
I had a nice run yesterday, but the stats aren’t that impressive.
I planned for an easy warmup mile followed by 2 faster miles, I was thinking something a’la 8:30 and sub-8:00, and then some easier recovery. I didn’t do awful, but the pace was so-so. I was just too caught up in enjoying the nice weather, the fabulous-ness of late fall to actually push the pace. I guess this means I have a date with actual speed work later this week.
Today I was pretty proud of myself because I made it to the gym at noon to “pump some iron” – which means I praddled around with various bars and machines until my arms, legs and abs told me I’d worked hard. (I do think I accomplished something, but I’m not as proficient in the gym as I could/should be.) Logistically it can be hard to make time to leave for a noon run, but I nearly always want to get out there and do it.
Weights are a different story. Occasionally I don’t feel like doing them at all, and usually I would rather be going for a run. Why waste time lifting when I could be running? That used to be my motto, but the black and white truth is that running feels better when I’m lifting. I don’t know if weights make me faster, but they sure as heck keep injuries at bay. Last summer I had massive piriformis troubles that were a literal pain in the butt. Then, my left Achilles tendon was sore on and off until I finally broke down and took last November off from running. Since then I have been lifting sort of consistently, and I haven’t had any major injuries. If I’m lifting more and better, I can usually feel the difference in my running with improved form, leg strength, and less tired arms.
I still get tight muscles, but a decent stretching routine and my foam roller keep all my moving parts happy. While I know this isn’t scientific proof that lifting is good for all runners, it works for me. If you are a petite lady who worries about the myth that lifting will make you look like this, fear not. I am still a scrawny little thing! I wouldn’t mind developing more muscle, especially in my legs, but I don’t worry too much about it. I just want to run happy and healthy for years to come .
I wish I had some killer good weight lifting tips to share because that would make this post way more worthwhile. Alas, I do not. Check out some books, magazines or blogs like Bees Knees Life for ideas, and DO NOT be afraid of lifting.
One last thought: My blog is called Cow Spots and Tales. If this is your first visit to my blog, I promise that I really do write a lot about cows and farming. (Just click on the “Cows” category on the right if you don’t believe me!) For some reason, I have this incessant need to want to create most every post as if someone is reading my blog for the first time. I want to tell them about cows and farming and running and food and…suddenly my posts turn into scary mini-novels that nobody could possibly want to read. In the interest of my time and your time, I’m going to try not to make every post about everything. We’ll see how that goes 😉
Do you lift weights or do some form of strength training regularly? Do you (gasp) still look “normal”?