Running is HARD!

As you all know, I’m currently on a comeback after 6 weeks off from running due to a foot injury.  Things are going well.  I’ve run a few times each week since Christmas, keeping the mileage and intensity low, and my foot feels great.

Everything else?  Not so great.  On Monday, I was at the gym going for 3 miles on the treadmill.  After my warm up, I cranked the pace up to what would have been an “easy” run for me 3 months ago.  Ya’ll, it was HARD!  I was huffing and puffing, sweating like a pig, and by the time I finished (which, by the way, took EVERYTHING I HAD), I was the color of a plum.  I’m embarrassed by how red I was.

It’s crazy how quickly your body loses fitness when you take time off.  I know it was incredibly delusional of me to think that I could just go back to running fast-for-me miles on my short runs after so much time off, but it’s still a bummer to be faced with the reality that I’m not as fit or fast as I was.

That being said, I’m not discouraged.  If anything, I’m motivated to work even harder to get back to where I was, because I miss it.  And even though my run on Monday was hard, it felt GOOD.  I could feel the endorphins rising as I plugged away, and I was SO PROUD that I pushed through, in spite of the sweat and my stupid lobster face.  I could feel something deep inside me saying “YES. THIS. I MISSED THIS.”

a mil

I’m trying to take things one run at a time, one mile at a time.  It will get easier.  I will get faster.  And at least I’m running.

Do you find you lose fitness/speed quickly when taking a break from running?

Do you turn beet red when exercising too?

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27 thoughts on “Running is HARD!

  1. veryrach says:

    I definitely turn bright red when I run! ESP when I’m inside on the treadmill. Gym class was always pretty embarrassing for me and running selfies just don’t happen lol. I’m glad your foot is feeling better!!!

  2. SuzLyfe says:

    You know how much I harp on the fact that a mile is a mile and you should be happy for ever single damn one. I’ve been hurt and sick enough to learn that lesson!

  3. dgobs says:

    I hear this for sure! Happens to me every time I come back from injury (which is too often!). Disheartening, but you’ll be back before you know it!

    I get SO red when I work out. I went into a store to buy water after running for maybe 30 mins once and the cashier scolded me for not wearing sunscreen… she was convinced my beet face was a nasty sunburn! Eesh.

  4. txa1265 says:

    As someone who runs outdoors in these crazy temperatures I constantly hear that I am ‘inspirational’ or whatever … but really he bottom line is no different than anyone else – getting our there and doing it, when it would be easier to not bother.

    THAT is what matters – not pace, distance or anything else – so be proud that you got to it, and not embarrassed at how red you turned. Some days will be easier, some will be harder … but every day you can get in your run is a victory!

  5. Anna @ Piper's Run says:

    I feel your pain. I’ve only been able to run 3-5k not my normal 5-10k each day and finding those 5k’s hard lately. It’s hard coming back from an injury. The good news is that we are moving and not sitting on our butts.

  6. charissarunning says:

    Until I started taking running more seriously (before I really fell in love with it!), I was constantly having to “start over” with my running when I picked it back up after a break. It was always so frustrating to start further back from where I left off. But you know what the good thing is? You’ll find that you will build up your running endurance much faster and be back to where you were in no time! Your body will know better how to adapt to training. I have no doubt in a few short weeks you’ll exceed where you were before, especially given your serious motivation 😀

  7. Erica says:

    YES! I am in the same situation. So frustrating! I am getting back into in while recovering from an injury, i was by no means ever fast but I am super slow now, like 1 min per km slower. I am out there, doing it but it is so disheartening. I to an very determined to get it back! Hope it comes back quickly for you!

  8. runsaltrun says:

    Running IS hard and you are doing so great after having just had to take so much time off. It sucks that fitness can fall away so fast, but the good news is that you are on your way back to where you were before! I definitely know that feeling though!

    • DarlinRae says:

      I know, you had a pretty rough patch there too with your foot, and you’re doing amazing! I’m hoping that after a couple of weeks I’ll be back to speed work and making some progress.

  9. Amy says:

    I guess I’ll find out how quickly I lose speed/fitness once my break is over the week after next. I’ll guess that I will have lost fitness. Heck, I lose speed/fitness even when I am still running, all it takes is cutting back on distance and reducing speed work. Although, one fun fact I read somewhere a long time ago is that every time you “return” to running, it takes less time to get back to where you were. Your body has some sort of physical memory of it.

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