The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

August 15, 2012 at 9:28 am 2 comments

That’s how I feel during most of my morning runs, just in reverse order. This morning was no exception.

I woke up today with a less clouded head than the previous days, but my body felt very tight and stiff. I tried to stretch and yoga into looseness but my mind was not having it and I couldn’t really focus. I dressed for my run and took off and walked a few blocks to warm up. Once I decided to start running it was ugly. I felt so tight and like I was stomping, bouncing, and overreaching with my legs. In other words, I was resorting to my old running form.

After pressing on, the run shifted from ugly to bad. I played with my lean, core engagement, passive lower legs and arm swing. I had good moments but it was still a pretty rough time. I could feel some tension in my lower back, which told me I wasn’t using my core properly. My calves were tight from some overworked moments and I felt my shins a little bit. When I started pumping my arms I was tensing my shoulders yet when I tried to relax my shoulders my arm swing went out the window.

Finally, after almost a mile I started loosening up and feeling a little better with the run. My neighborhood is very hilly and I haven’t learned the chi running method of running hills yet so I walked the hills and ran the flats. That affected my rhythm but that’s what I have to do until I learn more technique.  After a half hour jaunt I was feeling pretty good and stretched out at home.

Today’s run had it’s fleeting glimpses of what chi running is all about, but it was also frustrating to feel so ugly and bad for most of it. I guess that’s part of the battle with morning runs–I’m just going to have to give myself more time to do some yoga before I run and prepare my body. However, I know from previous runs that I have the tools, it’s just a matter of digging through the junk and pulling them to the top. And, regardless of my perception of my progress, I was still able to get up early and be active before work, a not so minor victory in itself.

Patience and persistence, eh?

What are your morning workouts like? Any tips for getting focused in the morning before a workout?

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Entry filed under: Body Sensing, Chi Running, Morning Workout, Practice. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

I’m running! I run! Stop Reading This and Get Yourself a Ball Chair

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. ejmaldonado  |  August 22, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    I love the mornings! For me, it’s the best time to run. Tips based on things that work well for me are:

    –Wake up slow… very slow… I lie on my back and reach my arms above my head and try to touch my toes to the wall across the room… then I stretch/crack my back with the leg over body twist… this helps me loosen up a bit before even getting out of bed..
    –I drink a full glass of water
    –Use the restroom and brush my teeth
    –Depending on the distance, I will gel or chew up
    –Stretch
    –get dressed and put on shoes
    –Set GPS and just run:)

    I would say the whole prep process is about 30-45 minutes. I find that the slow prep pace helps me focus and not feel rush about getting out the door or getting in a run.

    Steph, you’re doing awesome!! Love the blog and love the work you’re doing. Keep it going:)

    Reply
  • 2. John  |  August 15, 2012 at 9:34 am

    I think I’m slowly getting there. My long run went well and I did a shorter run today and that was good too. I’m not envisaging it being all plain sailing though.

    Reply

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