I’ve decided to start a new summary of my running month- it’s valuable to be able to look back and see what went well, what didn’t and what can be learnt.
Injury free month
Getting through February injury free was massive! I’ve been at this since September 2020 and it’s the first month I haven’t had to spend some time on the sidelines. Hopefully that means my body is adjusting to being active and getting stronger with every run!
On 22nd February I was feeling strong at the end of my 25 minute Couch to 5k run and was on about 2.6 miles and wanted to see if I could push it to 3.
Turns out I could and in doing so also ran for over 30 minutes, demonstrating to myself that I could also achieve the time required to complete C25K.
That was a good morning!
In February I doubled the distance I ran in January. Partly that’s due to staying injury free, but mostly it’s down to being able to run further!
On the 15th of February, I reached run 19 of C25K where there are no longer any walking breaks in the sessions. That meant I was covering so much more distance each time I went out (as you can see from the jump in the monthly graph).
I love the feeling of being able to run for 3 miles without stopping. It’s such massive progress from where I started this journey 5 months ago, and could barely jog 100 meters.
McDonalds as Fuel
On Friday 20th February, after eating pretty well for most of the month, I fell off the healthy eating bandwagon, had a (very) large McDonalds breakfast, a big bag of mini eggs and three cans of Carling in the evening. I felt a bit bloated during the day, but didn’t think anything much of it.
When I came to run on the next morning, the whole run was horrendous. I felt short of breath, leaden legged and sick. I made it round, but it was an awful experience and a real eye-opener about the impact of nutrition on performance.
Not much I can do about this given I live in Wales, but it feels like a lot of my running this month was either done in the rain or sub-zero conditions, or a combination of the two.
Not that enjoyable.
Bring on the spring!
Lesson of the month
How I eat has a huge impact on how I run.
The McDonalds incident has had a massive impact on how I think about running and my diet. I’m generally trying to eat more healthily, but hadn’t been too focused on it.
The shock of how rubbish I felt that morning and how it negatively impacted my performance was inescapable.
Since then, I’ve been more serious about cleaning up my diet, focusing on whole-food plant based and cutting back on alcohol.
I’m running better, sleeping better and have more energy.
I don’t want my diet to be a drag on my running. I know my excessive weight already makes athletic performance harder and means my body takes more of a pounding than it should. This incident highlighted how eating poorly just compounds that in the short-term as well.
What were the highlights of your running month?