Such is my inconsistency when it comes to writing, I find that I have arrived at the magnificent day 18 milestone without so much as a mild “TARANTARA” fanfare or other equivalent outpouring of joy.
In December running days past – I would be stringing out the metaphorical bunting as soon as I got to the end of week1 – and of course making a big fat “TOOTAROO” once I had reached the magical day 16 half way point.
But now as a veteran run streak participant – I have a degree of ambivalence about this type of ‘run everyday challenge’ that seems to set in shortly after I agree to take part. Maybe the more often you do something the harder it is to summon up the motivation, and it feels less challenging somehow.
That said even for someone who runs regularly throughout the year – making time every single day to fit in a run, and upping my monthly mileage from 60 to 100+ miles is a bit of an effort of time management if nothing else, and yes my legs do get weary.
True, like the running trainspotter I am, it is satisfying to tick the days off and to be mildly smug that I am exercising daily and to not have to make any choices over what kind of exercise to do. It removes the internal dialogue I might be having over whether to go for a tough or an easy session, or TBH to do any exercise at all ! It saves me pondering over what distance, pace, level of effort or route – but even with all this simplicity of routine – as the days pass the repetition starts to suck the joy out of running.
Maybe this is a signal that my days of taking part in running streak challenges are over, and time for some new goal.
With this in mind – and after quite a bit of soul searching – I finally signed up to a marathon. In May of next year I am going to take part and hope finish my first marathon. I have opted to do the inaugural Stirling marathon which fortunately right now feels like something in the far away mists of time.
As I get through December I am consoling myself with comforting facts and motivating self talk around the fact that I am already running the equivalent to 4 marathons distance, and in a month that includes short days, wintry weather, Christmas parties, Christmas Day and my birthday.
This while also trying to forget that in a marathon you do have to do this weekly mileage in 4 and a bit hours !
Back to the here and now – a recap of December running efforts
Day 6 – evening run in the village checking out Christmas lights. Weather was a bit Decemberist and wet, but was nice once I was out
Mileage 3.15 Cumulative 28.99
Day 7 – trying to integrate these daily runs into everyday life – I ran to the Post Office then took a detour back home via a different Dell route. Saw some folk having a winter lunchtime BBQ, as you do – why not ?
Mileage 5.09 Cumulative 34.08
Day 8 – met an ex work colleague for coffee , so decided to run there – its downhill so arguably faster than the bus.
Mileage 4.03 Cumulative 39.07
Day 9 – joined my good chum Alison for a short run in the Dell – one of our usual routes.
Mileage 3.05 Cumulative 42.22
Day 10 – as before , 3 miles on one of our regular haunts. Squeezing in around other December commitments.
Mileage 3.0 Cumulative 45.22
Day 11 – I decided to run an extra bit to meet Alison and Lil to give a 5 mile total
Mileage 5.05 Cumulative 49.21
Day 12 – running again to meet a friend. 6 mile to the Meadows including important stop to order Christmas turkey.Then, as taken by this running everywhere kind of vibe, I continued my run into town, then took a wee wander up Calton Hill for the views.
Mileage 6.01 + 1.02 ( battery fail ) Cumulative 56.24
Day 13 – up early to get ‘run out of the way’ as I was meeting a friend for lunch ( this is a recurring theme I know), it is unusual for me to be a ‘lady who lunches’ – but I am not working at the moment.
Mileage 3.51 Cumulative 59.75
Day 14 – was in London meeting my daughter for lunch – as it was her birthday ! So had to run in the evening in Cambridge, where I was staying with my other daughter.Was dreading this as had been up since 4am and it felt way too cold and dark in Cambridge. BUT – there was a most beautiful moon, and Cambridge is so flat, and that evening without a breath of wind, it was a most magical run. I even stopped mid run for a pint of beer in a lovely pub.
Mileage 5.24 Cumulative 64.99
Day 15 – got up early to run along the River Cam – I love a Cambridge run. Was misty and dreich, but always good to run by the river seeing the rowers out early.
Mileage 4.40 Cumulative 69.39
Day 16 – HALF WAY POINT ! Nice easy run with Alison back on home turf.
Mileage 3.04 Cumulative 72.43
Day 17 – did a variation of a run route to give us a nice easy route after a tiring week ( and Alison had been partying at her work Christmas party night the night before). Very enjoyable run in cold, bright sunlight, and I bumped into someone I had only ‘met’ on Facebook previously – which was a nice bonus. Was one of those days when it felt as if everyone we knew was out running or cycling by the canal.
Mileage 3.19 Cumulative 75.62
Day 18 – Jingle Bell Race. Second year we have done this fun race – organised by Pitreavie AAC in Dunfermline. Is a 5k ( almost ) race where the route makes the shape of a sleigh. I am no fan of 5ks and especially after almost 3 weeks of slow plod daily running. But was fun to dress up in Christmas leggings and Santa hats and run with my chums.
Mileage 3.12 Cumulative 78.74
Only 13 days of running in this year left – TARANTARA – TOOTAROO and maybe even HALELUJAH ! 🎉🎉🎉