That's quite the statement, given that people in northwest BC know me as that running guy. "He sure runs a lot" my wife hears all the time. They are right, but in all honestly I have not enjoyed running at the level I currently am since at least 2016, and maybe ever.
I think it is something all runners experience. There are always frustrations and set backs. This results in a love/hate relationship with running. Undoubtedly it will sway back the other way at some point, but for now positivity reigns supreme.
And all this comes in a year with no races. Well, no big goal races anyway. Our time off is being spent travelling the world and seeing our daughter get married. Mind you, I haven't seen an official wedding invitation just yet so there's a 1% chance I'll get to the Victoria marathon weekend yet.
I will get to the local events where I can, but the training has not placed me quite where I would like to think I should be so far. Now yes Brent and I did win the Rupert half marathon relay and I finished top six at the Centennial 5K, but my times weren't spectacular by any means. I think it's because I lacked focus as I zeroed in on what exactly I should do in a year with no goal race.
But I have figured it out, and I am in such a great mindset right now. And I am so certain this plan and this positivity will lead me to the be the best runner I can be at some point in the future. I don't know when exactly, but it will.
I have my strongest zest ever to get out running every day. I have largely left the roads (that will make it tougher for the wife's friends' to see me running all the time!) and thoroughly enjoying running the various Terrace Mountain (especially the decommissioned trails from yesteryear that others don't know about). I will begin hitting some other trails once the snow pack disappears, but for now I'm a Terrace Mountain regular.
Being in nature rather than the roads has truly done wonders for my mental health. I am in such a positive frame of mind right now. Have I said that already? I know I have, but it is such a great place to be in! And I am already seeing tremendous benefits of improved leg strength. I think this is a weakness of mine - my legs will hurt on a long run well before my lungs.
I have a great plan for the six months (minus my running-less weeks in Europe) that will put me in top shape. Each week will have one two-hour plus long run, one lactate threshold run and several days building leg strength on the trails. If I can add a bit of speed work at the right time, I should be able to push for a PR later this year, even if it is just my own course.
I do need to remember to make time to run with my friends. Trails are great, but my trail running friends are so much faster than me. My road running friends tend not touch a dirt road let alone a trail, especially during training weeks.
But for now my intention is to keep getting out, enjoying nature, exploring the great outdoors and fully embrace this great feeling of the love of the running.