Runlife
February 12, 2014

Keep It Spicy

by. Amanda Johnson
Seattle, WA

Amanda has been a runner for over 15 years. She prefers to race middle distance on the track, but often finds herself competing in obstacle-laden endurance challenges. She has a goal to run 365 days in 2014 and is currently training for the American River 50 miler in April.


My affair with running began like any other budding relationship: with butterflies, thoughtful surprises, and mutual give and take. But over the years, I fear it has become increasingly one-sided. I gave running everything; my time, my focus, and my body. Yet running grew distant. Time and time again, running would leave me broken and I found our connection dwindling. This year I knew I had to do something to shake things up, or risk losing the love of my life.

Maybe I was too concerned with my own vision of our future, and neglected to consider the feelings of my other half. Maybe I came on too strong, pushing forward and ignoring all the warning signs. Whatever the case, I realize now that I need a fresh approach to rekindle the fire between us. 

Ordinarily, my training consists of workouts designed for speed…a single-track mind if you will. My endgame has always been achieving fast times and all the accolades that follow. But after countless injuries and subsequent breakups, leads me to believe that running no longer shares my goals.

This year I am going to spice things up. I need to spend more time with running, reestablish that strong foundation where we first found love, so I’ve embarked on a mission to run 365 days in 2014. This forces me to make each moment count by remembering the little things, exercise restraint in times when we seem invincible, and heed the warnings when times get tough. So far we are going strong, but not without some ups and downs.

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Additionally, I have three sub-goals to help deepen our connection and put the spark back in our runmance. First, I’m in it for the long haul and I want the relationship to go the distance, so to prove it I plan to complete the American River 50-miler in April. This is a gigantic leap of faith, given I’ve never even run a marathon.

Second, I hope to run a 5k PR. The 5k has always been a hot-button issue between running and I. So instead of sweeping it under the rug, I plan to mix it up and address it directly.

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Lastly, I intend to run a mile time trial in 5:10 or faster. Not to get too racy, but I plan to complete this goal wearing nothing but my randies underwear. Not only will less clothing cut down on wind resistance, but it’s sure to keep things exciting.

Whether or not we see these all goals to their completion, surely the attempt will work to keep my relationship with running hot and heavy. Exercising the same old routine day-in and day-out will leave your relationship stale. To pull yourself out of a rut and add some spice to your #runlove, you need to try something new and unexpected! 

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Comments

George Mason | February 12, 2014 at 2:26pm

Runmance is very important

Runmance, what a wonderful word! As it's my first comment over here, let me start by saying you have an excellent blog. Your relationship with running and the way you describe it make me realize that the 'thing' I have with running and its inconsistency, being an on and off thing in my life is not giving me much peace lately. Stay strong and keep running and challenging yourself further and further, the relationships into which we put our effort are definitely the most rewarding ones.

chris | March 11, 2014 at 4:18pm

Commitment

I gotta hand it to you Amanda … running each of the 365 days ? That’s a love affair that can’t go wrong. It’s like being there for each other, holding hands through the ups and downs.

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