Chasing 42

Life, the Universe, & Running

Daily Chase: Vol. 53

Happy 4th of July to everyone! I hope you’ve been able to enjoy the holiday weekend, and find some time to get out and explore the roads or trails! The weather around here for the last week has been surprisingly pleasant, and the humidity has stayed in check, which has been a welcome relief. I’m finally beginning to hit my stride with this new schedule, and I don’t feel quite as tired on a regular basis, which is always encouraging 🙂 My fall running calendar is beginning to take shape as well. I registered for the Philadelphia Marathon on November 20th, which should be a blast with some friends traveling out east from Iowa to come run the streets of Philly with me. I think I’ll be taking the plunge on an October 100-miler as well, so more to come on that soon! I think having something significant to train for really does help me focus my effort on a daily and weekly basis so I’m excited to have that looming over me soon!

Trail love!

Trail love!

Chasing42 Log: 20160623-20160703

Run: The miles have been feeling much more comfortable over the past week and a half. I’ve hit my Tuesday track workout goals with consistency, and I’ve been getting in some solid climbing as well, especially on the weekends. The last two weekends have seen 25/13-15 back-to-back efforts with plenty of climbing on the trails, and I’ve felt better than I have all summer. The trails are in great shape right now too, so it’s been an absolute joy to be out there! My weekly mileage comfort zone seems to be settling in at between 60 and 80 miles, and I’ve been hitting that mark consistently. It’s nice to have a sense of where I’m at my best without pushing myself too far.

Midweek beauty!

Midweek beauty!

Thought: The idea of a running culture has been on my mind some as of late. Many activities or affinity groups throughout society constitute sub-cultures, and running is no different. It’s fascinating to listen to story after story from runners about trying to explain their passion to non-runners. How often have you heard these comments?

  • You ran HOW far?
  • Why on earth would you get up that early?
  • Isn’t that hard on your knees?
  • I bet you can eat ANYTHING you want?
  • How far is that marathon?
  • I just don’t know HOW you do it? I get tired walking the dog!
You don't always know where the path leads, but you still feel compelled to follow.

You don’t always know where the path leads, but you still feel compelled to follow.

I will fully admit (and I’m sure I’m not alone) that I often forget that not everyone has the same understanding of running. This is in large due to the fact that I have surrounded myself with other runners who enjoy the sport as much as I do, and enjoy talking about it. It’s human nature to seek out other like-minded individuals that share your interests. However, I’m still amazed at the lack of basic running knowledge folks seem to have, no matter where I am. Running isn’t exactly a niche activity, or a brand new cultural phenomenon. People have been running for a long time, and the current running mindset has been developing for decades. Races of all distances are held almost every day, especially during the summer, and everyone probably knows someone who has run a half marathon or full marathon at this point. We aren’t talking about a group of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics translators here! Yet, the above questions still pop up. I’m always the most troubled by the “I could never do that” statements. If you speak with any group of runners, you’ll hear origin stories that run the gamut. Not everyone has been running their whole lives, and many people underwent significant life changes. Running was simply one aspect of that change. I’d put myself in that camp. Now, I don’t say that as a way of soliciting a pat on the back. I mention it to say that running isn’t out of reach for most people. It certainly helps to have the support of friends and family, but you can do it even without that support. It boils down to mindset. Carol Dweck talks about the difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset, and there is a lot to be learned in that simple distinction. It comes down to believing in yourself and your ability to change and grow. It helps to have a good pair of shoes too! Whatever your journey, the reality is that those questions won’t stop coming, but as long as you keep #chasing42, you’ll always be happy to answer them 🙂

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