DECISIONS AND CHOICES
One thing I love about my Half Ironman training program (by Gale Bernhardt--12 Weeks to a Half Ironman, purchased through Active.com) is that I don't have to decide what to do on any given day. Today on my schedule, for example, is a 45 minute run and a 45 minute swim. While this has taken out the guesswork on my training, my mind, however, was fighting the decision I had to make for the day--run in the cold and dark morning or run in the maybe warmer but rainy evening. That would still mean getting to the gym and swimming, but still dragging a little from last week, I didn't want to make a decision. I just wanted to sleep in. But, since I did make the choice to take on this training progam (and paid for it!), I had to make a decision and am glad I made the wise decision to get out and run.
It really wasn't that cold, about 38 degrees but no wind (and we always have wind in the afternoon/evenings) so it seemed effortless as I glided along in the still dark morning, hearing birds chirping as they awakened, knowing that darkness would lift soon.
Because it was still dark, I decided not to wear the heart rate monitor that I have become obsessed with using over the past 4 months now. I have come to know my ranges and zones well enough now to go without it at times, and have become surprised at how much easier it is to go through a run and stay in a comfortable zone than it was back in December when I first started using it. This alone makes the run enjoyable. Sometimes a little tedious because I want to get it done, but running harder/faster will really not get it done for me faster because then at some point I am forced to walk. So I have learned patience in every workout, going through the paces, with the hope and belief that the payoff will be a successful race.
Today, I just plugged along, enjoying the day. Once I had made the choice to run in the morning, the only other choice I had to make was which route I would take. Going by time, I was not locked into any set route and was free to roam wherever I chose. I enjoy watching the world come alive as I head out to run, knowing this will be my only alone time of the day. And it makes me more aware of my actions as I head to work later--controlling my driving speed (I'll get there when I get there!), keeping my impatience with others under control (don't worry, be happy), being more alert and focused than otherwise.
Once I got to the 30 minute mark of my run, I found that I had only stopped to walk twice for 1 minute each, using that time in waiting to and crossing busy streets, and wishing I had time to go farther. That is the difference in my training now. Its relaxed, its enjoyable. To me, there has been a freedom in following this plan because it all goes for time and intensity. While obviously it is necessary to follow and do the training, it is still my choice whether to do it or not, and once I'm done, I'm glad, like today, I made the right decision and got it done.
I hope you all make a good choice today in your workouts!