- Mar 13 – luck of the runner – how does running make you feel lucky?
- Mar 20 – spring break running/racing plans
- Mar 27 – DNS? DNF?
Luck of the Runner!
I have to admit, I don’t really do much for St. Patrick’s Day. I try to remember to wear green, but that’s about as far as it goes.
There is a cute 5K this weekend that I am trying to convince my husband is a good idea in McKinney. It gives me a reason to wear a green sparkle skirt, so I’m totally game.
When I think about being a “lucky” runner, I think back to my most recent marathon.
*Side Note* how awesome is it that I can call it my “most recent” since I’ve done more than one now? It totally makes me feel awesome.
Anyways, back to my point.
I felt SO lucky when I was running in January.
But really, that wasn’t luck.
That was a straight-up, grade-a, runners high.
I will forever and always run with the hopes of feeling that again. Even if that means I have to do another 26.2. Or 48.6. Whatever, I’m in.
How To Get That Runners High
Tip One: Endorphins
Alternate Title: Actually Push Yourself
I noticed that towards the end of my race, I was getting so excited about the potential of an amazing PR, I just kept pushing a little more and a little more. I am by no means a runner who goes all out until I puke, but the excitement had me pushing more than I normally would.
I let my heart rate get a little higher.
I tried to go just a little bit faster.
Once I knew it was time to walk, I ran just a little bit longer.
Those endorphins kicked off the right way and I found that perfect “sweet spot”.
Tip Two: Endocannabinoids
Truth be told I had no idea what these were until I started to do a little light research on the runners high. And also truth be told I don’t think I know how to pronounce it in real life.
But this is a naturally synthesized version of THC. So this is, literally, the same chemical that gets you high from marijuana.
Runners World explained that Endocannabinoid production is probably more in response to stress as opposed to pain from physical activity. So this would make a ton of sense for me because my marathon was the cumulation of an entire year of an insane amount of stress. Now, chronic stress doesn’t trigger this “runners high”, but lucky for me I had just the right amount of pre-race nervousness.
During that race, I let it ALL go.
It was cathartic.
Tip Three: Don’t Expect It
Keep your easy runs easy. While it would be awesome to get that effect every time you run, but it’s not practical.
I try to not expect anything special out of an everyday run. The more normal runs I have, the more special the special ones are. When I’m having a day, and know I need a run to heal something, that’s when I focus on pushing myself just a little bit more.
Tip Four: Have Fun
This last tip is really a bunch of tips all rolled into one.
Make sure your body is fueled properly for the distance you plan to run, and have fun figuring out what works best for you. Find new recipes, try new snacks, and really enjoy a good post-race brunch.
Marvel at the achievements of other runners! I don’t miss watching the Boston Marathon. I stream it on my computer from start to finish! I feel so much pride watching runners cross that finish line.
Explore new places and explore new people! For the first time EVER I got out of my comfort zone and ran in a new place with a bunch of strangers over the weekend. It was a BLAST and I really, truly, can’t wait to do it again.