Yeah, baby. I'm feeling it.

I had zero expectations heading out for a late morning run today, other than to clear my head. With a road trip to Minnesota a couple of days away, my mind’s been whirling with compiling the mental to-do list. I also was bummed to have missed a group run with girlfriends because my husband got called in to work. I knew just getting out on the trails for a bit would boost my mood.

As it turned out, it was much better than I could have hoped for. I’ll even go so far to say that I feel like I’ve got my running mojo back.

This is not just about feeling great after my icky race last weekend, either. Running this route today, a mixture of roads and trails near my neighborhood, I found myself feeling stronger as each mile passed. Even the hills didn’t knock the wind out of me like they have in recent weeks. I just kept feeling great. Here’s what I think aided my run today:

  • The weather was close to perfect: overcast, damp and on the cooler side.
  • I ran without tunes (and a timing device): I wanted only the sounds of the trees and birds to help quiet my mind. It worked. I’m guessing I ran at least five miles, maybe six. But who knows?
  • I headed for the trails: There’s something so peaceful about running the Vasa. I crossed paths with just one other person, a mountain biker, and I found myself so relaxed just being alone in the woods.
  • Beach days left me craving a run: It’s been absolutely gorgeous here lately, so we’ve been soaking it up at the beach a lot. As awesome as it’s been, my body and mind wanted this run badly.

I’m hoping to get another good run in before we leave this week, especially since it won’t be easy to squeeze in any running while visiting friends in the land of 10,000 lakes.  I’m just thankful for today’s run, which left me feeling redeemed after last weekend’s hellish race, yes, but also reminded me how satisfying a good run can be. How about you? What’s the state of your running  these days? Feeling it … or not so much?

I’ve got another fun give-a-way, this time something from the great people at Running Fit. Randy Step, owner of these Michigan stores, has generously offered a cool duffel bag (valued at $40) for me to hand out to a reader. Share your running story here in the comments section and I’ll use to select one lucky winner. You can even choose your own logo color. Randy tells me the bag “looks great with pink and white on black.” Check out the bag here.  I’ll close the comments Tuesday, July 20 at noon EST. 

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6 Responses to “Running mojo no myth”

  1. Heather

    I feel your words as if they were my own metaphorically. Thank you for posting so eloquently about your last run that put everything into perspective.

    My running has been restored slowly over the past few months through finding hidden trails and quite moments underneath a canopy of trees. I’ve been in training since February for my marathon, but it’s been a rocky, root-filled ride that is now just a mere 6 weeks away.

    The training this year was so much harder than last year’s preparation for my first marathon due to months of not running this past winter, then moving apartments, so my normal routes were gone and I had scary darkness in the early morning to greet me and my running shoes. My mountain biker boyfriend found new trails in the woods for me to run on, which I was very thankful for. Those first few weeks of trails were amazing! I relished in all the wild life I encountered on my trails- deer, a random turkey, baby raccoons, and birds. Then injury set in from multiple falls on my right knee, which made me take off a month of running. It’s taken 3 months to become accustomed to the new routes and trails and the recovery time, but I’m finally starting to feel at home on my trails.

    My run yesterday with my sister reaffirmed the past few months of training and proved I am back on track. We ran 14 1/2 miles on the same route that we had done last month together. This time, I was much faster and able to carry on a conversation more during the run. The hilly route did not phase me like it had before and I did not need to take as many walking breaks during the run. The calmness of the trees along with the breaking dawn made it a great beginning to my peaking upcoming runs in the next few weeks. I feel charged for my marathon and really want to see myself do well.

    Thank you for reminding me what I am thankful for in my runs and how I am back at home with them. Have fun on your trip!

  2. Great post, Heather. I know all too well how it feels to have a crappy race day. You can’t redo it and all you wanna do is feel better, to have a good run. Mojo comes and goes. Right now, it’s up for me, I’m feeling it! I just finished my first 50K trail race and I still tear up at the beauty that I saw in the Southern Oregon hills and the fact that I fueled well and felt great. Your run with no garmin and no tunes sounded perfect. That’s what I do when I finish a race, especially if it wasn’t what I expected. That’s the perfect time to do all your favorite things on your run and just have fun!

  3. Natasha

    I loved your post. I wish I had more around me than just houses.

    I started running last year. I have really enjoyed it, more than I thought I would. Up until the end of May, I loved to run outside. I would run through different neighborhoods, with others, without others, it didn’t matter to me. I’ve always tolerated the Texas heat pretty well, but this year it’s just different. I can’t stand to be outside. Running outside just doesn’t have the same pleasure it did in the fall and winter, or even in the spring. I have had to drag myself indoors to the treadmill to avoid the heat of the outdoors. I make it a point to force myself out of bed on the weekends so I run outdoors before the sun starts to head up the streets. I dream of taking a late summer trip up north just so I can run outdoors without melting into the street. I don’t see that happening in the near future, so I guess it’s back to the treadmill until the fall rolls around.

  4. Loved finding your blog, Heather. What a beautiful post. I always run without music — I like to hear the sounds of the city, the birds and the squirrels. It also allows me to greet people along the way. See you soon! ps. Does this mean I am entered in the drawing. If I win, can you bring it with you when you come??? : ) See you soon!

  5. I can’t remember how I found your site a few weeks ago but I love it…and especially this post. We were camping at Platte River last month and are headed to Interlochen this month then back two more times before Labor Day….I can’t wait to run the roads up there. I’ve been running steadily for 3 years now and starting racing 5Ks this past February and just signed up for the Free Press Half-Marathon….
    I’m a little scared but am training by mixing up treadmill with outdoor runs with hills and speedwork at my local high school track.
    Keep up the great writing and running!

  6. Thank you all so, so much for sharing your stories. I loved reading them. It’s great to connect with fellow runners and to know I am not alone in what I’m experiencing out there on the roads and trails. I hope you’ll keep posting when you feel compelled to do so — and (in case you can’t get enough here) please hop over to the Michigan Runner Girl page on Facebook.

    OK….drum roll, please…..with the help of, a third-party drawing service, the winner of the Running Fit duffel bag is … Mary Divine of St. Paul, Minnesota. Congratulations, Mary!

    In case anyone wants to see how this drawing and works, here’s a link:

    Thanks again to you all for visiting and being part of the Michigan Runner Girl community. Really happy to see you here!

    – Heather

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