Flexibility, that is what I have decided that I need throughout this winter. The other day I wrote a blog pretty much just complaining about the effects of snow on my running. Those days that I have my runs planned and then they get ruined by weather are hard on me. I look forward to the times that I get to go hit the pavement. I may get carried away, but in the moment it feels like there is no solution. Well, I have found the solution. It is flexibility. I was able to go out Saturday morning with Brent for a not so quick 4 mile run as it was about 5 degrees outside. We were not moving very fast in the cold and on the ice. We have to get back into the balancing game while running. I guess one good thing about it is that it forces me to slow down and have easier runs. Which are always needed. I probably tend to push myself to hard throughout the weeks sometimes. That is why running without a watch is always good. Just to go by how my body feels.
Then on Sunday, after a morning at church and lunch at my parents, I had enough time towards the end of the afternoon to slip in a nice 9 miler. That put me at 20 miles last week. I really cannot complain about that. Sundays are usually my rest day. For the next few months, if it is a better looking day than Saturday for weather, it is going to be my new long run day. Also, running in the afternoon is new for me as well. Even on the weekends, I wake up at a decent time in the morning, go on my run and then start the rest of my day. Otherwise, I go on a quick jaunt after work in the evenings. This afternoon thing is going to be weird as it seems to break up my day. I will have to get use to it if I am going to run that marathon in a few months.
The 9 miler was a nice much needed run for more than just logging the miles. It was a great stress reliever. I always feel better afterwards even if it is just a short run. It gives me time to think and put things into perspective. Work has been a tad stressful these last few weeks with added problems that will not take care of themselves. My lunch runs have helped with relieving this stress in the middle of the day. As I was heading down the street just thinking about the happenings over the past few weeks, the stress lifted away. All I could think about was the beauty of the wintery afternoon. The fields were still covered in snow and the sun was slowly going down behind the mountains that were off in the distance. This is why running around Bozeman is amazing. No matter where I run in town, I can see the mountains. It sure does make me think about God’s glory and it gives me peace. No matter how stressful things become, I just need to learn to deal with it. It always goes away eventually.
The route that I chose was pretty much just a wide square. With only 5 turns, I had a long time to just stare out over the valley. Each time I turned, I was able to look at different mountains. It cannot get any better than that. There were streaks of clouds in the sky with blue peaking through. As the sun set closer and closer to the horizon, the added colors made the last few miles a pure joy. The air was getting colder, but the beauty was increasing. Montana winter sunsets are the best. Being able to enjoy them on a run is even better!
Hopefully there will not be too much complaining from my end for the rest of the winter. I just need to remember. FLEXIBILITY. No one likes to hear others complain. I know that I don’t but I seem to be one of the best at it. Here is to hoping for a flexible less-complaining winter of training.