Squats and Ah-Ha’s

This was a week of Ah-Ha moments, mixed with sore muscles and a surprising long run. 

I chose to use my first rest-day to go to the gym and do my new favorite Spin and Strength class. This ended up being far from a “rest.” Of course I knew that going in, but all the squats and squat jumps made sure I remembered it. 

On Tuesday, I woke up to tired, stiff legs, but I finally had a day with time in the morning and my schedule called for an easy run. So I got on the treadmill at an extremely easy pace and got the run in. After about 10 minutes my tired, sore legs were moving just fine and I had my first “ah-ha” moment of the week: tired legs still move and running on them isn’t impossible. 

Later on Tuesday, I came across my second “ah-ha” moment: running on tired legs doesn’t necessarily “loosen” them up.

Wednesday and Thursday brought far too much time at work and in traffic, so I chose not to try to squeeze in any time on the treadmill. 

Friday took me back to the gym for a Spin & Strength class. More squats. Sabrina would be so proud. Another hike around the mountain on Saturday, and I was ready for my Sunday long-run. 

It has been a lazy, relatively grey week or two here in the desert. The holiday season is here and I’ve been looking for pieces of holiday inspiration. There is a chill in the air and that helps. T has been making fires on weekend nights – that definitely helps when I’m looking for cozy. Today, T put up all the extra Christmas lights after I mentioned that I didn’t think the house was decorated enough for the holiday. 

One thing I find to be a study in contrasts this time of year: listening to holiday music while running 9.5 miles in the sun. It wasn’t cold enough to require a jacket the entire run. I didn’t need a winter hat. Running here in 50-something degrees when the sun is out is like a nice early-fall run in the Northwest. Here: Happy Holidays!

I’m not complaining. I took the opportunity to run parts of the trail I don’t usually run. I found hills I wasn’t expecting. And I’ll take the sun, blue sky, and brisk air any day over those sweltering summer mornings.

The desert still amazes me. I wasn’t as strong today as I’ve felt on other long runs. I’m not as inspired today as I’ve felt on other days. But that leads me to my final “ah-ha” of the week: So what? Doing the work when I can, not beating myself up for failing to follow a training plan to the letter, and enjoying the accomplishment of what I’m doing when I’m doing it – these are the things I can control and I can choose to enjoy. 

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