Life of a College Runner: A New Start

Hello friends! I’m sorry I didn’t write last week. I was kind of busy and kind of lazy, and I was going to write it but then class started again this week. Anyway, I hope you enjoy this week! My training has not been perfect, but I have been running.

Monday

5 miles, 37:05 (7:26/mile)

It’s official! I started my very last block of college today! This block is my education senior seminar, so I’ll be pretty busy, but it’s my last one. That’s a bittersweet feeling for sure. I’m excited to be moving on with life, and a lot of the sadness has worn off because I’m not actually at Cornell. It feels a little less real at home.

A quick recap of last week: I ran about 28 miles. A lot of it was on the treadmill because of the crazy weather. First snow, then it was hot and humid. I also had a couple of job interviews and a couple of job rejections. It was a very up and down kind of week.

Anyway, now this week was off to a good start. I called it a tempo run tonight because I went pretty fast, and about halfway through I realized: hey! I can call this whatever I want because it’s just me now. If I want it to be a tempo run, it can be a tempo run. Mum, Dad, and I ran at Garrison. I chased them almost the whole time, until I caught them with half a mile to go. My splits were 7:44, 7:07, 7:10, 7:20, and 7:46. It was a little windy on the way back, but otherwise it was a good night. It felt good. Not too fast, but for the first time in a while, I felt pretty strong.

Tuesday

Morning: 2 miles, 17:25 (8:43/mile)

It was a treadmill morning. I ran off some stress and emotions from not sleeping so well last night and felt a little bit better afterward. Still, running a little bit right away is a great way to start the day and make me feel productive.

Afternoon: 5 miles, 40:35 (8:07/mile)

And it was a treadmill night. Plans changed a little bit, so I hopped on the treadmill this afternoon to get a quick run in before my mom was done with work. I felt much better this afternoon than this morning.

Wednesday

Morning: 2 miles, 17:01 (8:23/mile)

My mom and I ran together this morning around town. She got me out of bed and moving, and then almost killed me on the run. We were moving a bit fast for my taste after just waking up, but it was nice. We talked a bit and listened to The Killers. It was also a little bit rainy and humid, which was kind of nice.

Afternoon: 5 miles, 39:05 (7:49/mile)

It was hot and humid. My legs felt like lead. Even though I was still going a little fast, it felt slow. I am really feeling this springtime weather, and it’s making me feel like I’m running through peanut butter. I always forget how humidity feels and how it takes time to get used to it. My legs were also a little sore, probably from the tempo run on Monday.

Thursday

5 miles, 39:15 (7:52/mile)

I ran around town tonight. I did the loop where I add on a little ways past the gas station, out on the gravel, and out towards Highway 30. It was more humid than yesterday, I think. I was hot and sweaty. After my first two miles, I also slowed down a lot. This is where I need to remember that acclimating to the heat and humidity takes time and I might be a bit slower. I also saw Bailey walking Pippa about halfway through and had to turn down a different street so she (the dog, not my sister) wouldn’t freak out. Overall, it was a pretty good run. Running around town always seems to take a while, though, because there’s really nowhere to go.

Friday

2 miles, 17:13 (8:37/mile)

I did a morning run, and I was a bit slow. My legs were still kind of sore, or they just didn’t want to move. Maybe I should start rolling out again. No, I haven’t been rolling out for the past month or so that I’ve been home. Yes, I do know I should be rolling out because it’s good for me. I will consider it.

I had planned on doing five more miles tonight, but then I didn’t. I got lazy and tired. But at least I got something in today.

Saturday

5 miles, 38:10 (7:37/mile)

The whole fam ran at Garrison again this morning. Mum and Dad were only going to go 4, but they went farther because there was someone on the trail and they couldn’t tell if it was a man or woman. I caught up to the stranger fairly quickly, and judging by the matching sports bra and running tights, it was a woman. Still, my parents kept an eye on me as I turned around. The first thing I heard when I caught up to them a while later was: “Did you bring your pepper spray?” Ahhhhhh…. no, I didn’t. I know I should be carrying it all the time, but I keep forgetting. Also, we haven’t really seen people out on the trail. Now, however, I will probably be strongly advised to carry it with me on most runs, especially if I’m going farther than everyone else. I know that’s the smart thing to do, it just slips my mind sometimes, until I’m actually out there and see someone. On another note, I ran into someone else on the trail too. It was my friend and former teammate, Eli Miller! He was riding his bike and we crossed paths on the bridge, and we exchanged hello’s. It was nice to see a familiar face out and about.

Sunday

4 miles, 32:15 (8:03/mile)

I had plans today. I was going to run 9 miles and have it be the first week I’ve run 40 miles in two months. Alas, it did not happen. We were going to do a family long run, but there were things that had to be done around the house. Instead, I sat down and did something I actually really needed to do. I created a running plan for myself for the next three months. I think I’m on my own now. I’ve been going week-to-week based on the training plans Jerry texts me, but I think that time is done. I need to have a plan for myself and for the future. So I sat down and, for a couple hours, planned out my running future. I have a race in June (hopefully) so I’m focusing on training for that. Of course, that race is a 9-hour trail race, so I’m going to need to do some serious long run and endurance training.

It might be a little intense, but that is what is familiar to me. I’m doing it my way. I color-coded it and everything! And do you know what the best part is? Making this training plan actually made me excited about running for the first time in a while. Now I put down on paper what my goals are and how to get there, and I just have to get out there and do it (which is the hardest part, I know, but half the battle is finding the motivation to do it). It was challenging for me, because I’ve never had to make my own training plan before. My mom made my training plans when I trained for my first couple of half marathons, and I’ve been following my coaches’ training plans for the past four years or so. Sitting down and making my own was hard. But I knew what I wanted to do, and I knew all of the components of a week of training that I needed, and I eventually figured something out. I had a little bit of practice yesterday, because I actually played around with some 5k training plans for a special someone who is just getting into running (Brett). That was a different challenge entirely, but I’m getting off-subject.

Anyway, at the end of the day, I did 4 miles, bringing my total to 35 for the week. That is the most I’ve done in over a month. It’s kind of sad, but the point is I am getting back. I made a plan and now I want to stick to it. This week is the beginning of a brand new start for me, a start where I am in charge of my training. It’s definitely something new, but I really think I can do this. And I’m actually really excited to get started.

Thank you so much for reading! See you next week.

— Morgan

Teacher, Runner, Reader, and Writer. Destined for great things, I think.