Thursday, October 06, 2011

The Start of a Streak

I've been mulling the idea over for a while, but I think the time has come. I am going to become a streaker.

No... not THIS kind of streaker (however fun that might be...)
Maria Sharapova watches as a streaker interrupts her quarter-final match with Russia's Elena Dementieva at the Wimbledon tennis championships in London July 4, 2006. Photo by Kevin Lamarque for Reuters.

No, I'm talking about a running streak: a set of uninterrupted days of running.

I talked this over with Kristel on the run this morning, and I think it will be a good way for me to launch my fall training and build my weekly mileage.

Here's my plan:
I'm going to start with a goal of completing a 30-day streak. The United States Running Streak Association (yes, there is such a thing!) defines a streak as "to run at least one continuous mile within each calendar day under one's own body power."

For the purposes of this streak, though, I'm inclined to follow Pete's example and go out for at least 30 minutes of running each day. I cite him here because his reasons for streaking, and his approach (alternating hard efforts with super-easy efforts, so that not having a complete "rest" day doesn't take a toll on his body) is exactly what I'm aiming for:
Last year after I started taking a lot of extra days off, everything seemed to fall apart. It wasn’t just my running focus – work, personal plans, and even my sleep schedule were really thrown off. Going out each day for 30 minutes really isn’t that much physical effort. I don’t have any rule to set a minimum distance. As long as I go out with the intention of covering some distance as best I can for 30 minutes each day, I count it as a streak run. Most of my extra streak runs are very slow, easy jogs with my dogs. It’s not much extra effort for me but they definitely appreciate it.

I, too, have noticed that it's the rest days that tend to throw me off, motivation-wise. Whenever I'm out on a run, I'm happy and motivated to do more... I just need to be sure I get out there to keep my training on track.

So... here we go! Day 1 is covered, thanks to Kristel and our trek up Towers this morning (through some of the smoke from Tuesday's prescribed burn!). 29 days to go... and then I'll re-evaluate to see whether I should commit to another 30 days.

See you on the trail!
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Blogger Ean McCrystal May said...

Good luck with your streak, Ashley!

10:24 AM  
Blogger Ashley said...

Thanks, Ean. All is going well after a week... we'll see how long I can sustain it!

7:59 PM  
Blogger Ean McCrystal May said...

How's the streak going? I've always been afraid to start one, knowing my weaknesses all too well! Hope you are staying strong and getting out there!!

6:23 PM  
Blogger Pete said...

So are you going to stop after 30 days?

10:03 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

Pete, sadly my first streak ended prematurely after two weeks, due to an awful cold. Yuck! I rallied on Saturday to do one of the "petite" loops at RWB, but that seems to have been a bad idea health-wise and made me even sicker! But I'm feeling better now, and definitely saw the benefits of running every day (despite doing so for only 14 days) so the new streak starts today. Fire up!

7:24 AM  
Blogger Pete said...

Well good luck with the new streak! Take care of yourself and stay healthy. And you can always walk if you can't run.

10:12 AM  

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