Show Up, and Put in the Effort. Each Time, it Gets a Little Easier, and You Get a Little Better.

Last week I ran for the first time in 8 months.

I’ve been getting myself back in shape for over a year now, and with summer kayaking season coming up fast, I want to get the ol’ carcass into prime shape before heading out on the water. After all, the better shape I’m in, the longer I can enjoy the peace and quiet of the river.

So, Friday last I lumbered around the neighbourhood for 14 minutes and 38 seconds. It was a short run, only 2.5 km:

  • first km, 5:15 min
  • second km 5:41 min
  • last 500m, 3:38 min (7:02 minute pace)

I was sweating like a whore in confession, and my heartrate was kissing 180 bpm. It was not an easy run, and the recovery was worse. I was sore for five days.

But, my rules for living include hard exercise, showing up, consistent effort, ignoring DOMS, and pushing myself to get (at least a little) better.

Friday this week, I lumbered around the neighbourhood for 13 minutes and 50 seconds. A bit shorter time, yes, but this time a bit more distance, 2.6 km.

  • first km, 4:44 min
  • second km 5:16 min
  • last 600m, 3:49 min (6:12 minute pace)

In this, I obeyed every single rule mentioned above. I showed up, ran hard, ignored DOMS, and pushed to be better. I actually found myself surprised at how much my pace improved, and how much better I felt at the end. The recovery was faster, the soreness was less and this time, having a lot less cortisol in my system, my stress and mental health were a lot better the entire time.

Simple. Hard.

Yet, consistently applied, each time gets a little better.