By now you all know how much I love, love, love running.
You also know that I love to run by my own rules, my own terms — for me, my way.
I apply that “my way” mindset to not just how I train but how I run and recover from those runs. My body responds best when I run 3-4 times per week…*sometimes* 5 times but that’s a rarity (usually only happens when I’m keeping mileage low, as I have been the past few weeks of un-training time between the last half and full marathon training about to ensue).
I run my best, most fresh, most happy when I stick to this run-pace per week.
…there are no junk miles allowed up in here.
So when I started hearing about runners who were streaking left and right, and then heard about Runner’s World hopping on the whole run-streak bandwagon, I’m not gonna lie — it kind of irked me. And maybe irked isn’t the right word, but I guess I just don’t agree with the whole concept.
The idea of running back-to-back-to-back for days and weeks on end? It’s bound to do way more harm than good. No matter how seasoned of a runner you are. No matter if some of those run-streak days involve “just” a few miles. I just think it sends the wrong message for one, and for two — it’s not very kind on the body and joints.
By wrong message I mean this — why does more have to mean better?
…more “on” run days than off.
…more miles for miles sake vs. happy or fresh or strong miles.
…running to run vs. running with a purpose.
And by un-kind on the body? Well that one seems pretty obvious. While run-streaking, rest days go flying out the window. Sure, I’ve had my moments where I wanted to nix a rest day because I was antsy or whatever. But I’ve learned to quell the antsy pants on a rest day and I fully embrace them now. Not just because “rest days are good” but because rest days are just as important (in my view) as fit days are. Your body needs time to recover after all the work we put it through every day of the week. Without that recovery time, you can’t possibly expect your body to perform at peak capacity now can you? At least for me, that’s way more important than eeking out another workout, sans rest. I’d rather see my body work harder for that next workout because it can work harder, because its optimized for performance. I’d also rather see my body truly WORK for that rest day, truly earning it’s spot on my weekly training schedule.
So I don’t know — I totally feel as though I’m in the extreme minority as a runner when I say this but I am totally anti-run streaking.
But I’d rather honor my body with proper rest and focus on making every single run, every single mile count for something. Earning the rest. Working the work.
Am I alone on this one?