For the (short) running career I’ve had, I reached the “runner high” MAYBE a handful of times. And the high does not last long, some in a blink of an eye. I must confess, the motivation behind running is the “achievement high” (Yes I did it!)
Yesterday, I went on day 2 of Danny’s Chi Marathon training. It was 30-40 minutes of interval training focusing on two forms, very similar to Tuesday’s program. I modified it similarly with the rest time being only 30 seconds, instead of 1 minute. I focused again on the alignment of shoulder, hip, and ankle/engagement of the core.
Due to work schedule and the cooler weather, I decided to only do 20 intervals. I used to have this personal “rule” that I did not go running unless the temperature reaches 60. Yesterday, the high was 59F. I put on my shoes and ran. Yes, I’m a spoiled Californian. Yes, I do not enjoy the “crisp” weather like some runners do. And, yes, I prefer warmer weather. Hello, I used to play soccer in Ecuador with 110% humidity and 95F weather!
In any case, the first few intervals felt a bit awkward, mostly due to the windy cool weather. It took a little longer to warm up. My form practicing went a lot smoother – I did not need 30 seconds to reset. I could get into the C column in about 10 seconds. I had to consciously take my time to ensure good form.
Back to “runner’s high”, by interval 7 and through 15, I was in a very nice rhythm. My metronome was on, music was playing, and my mind went into a zone of “relax, let gravity do the work”. I didn’t realize I was on interval 15 until I wanted to switch the music. I could say that I finally started to understand the “calming effect of running” that other runners describe. Chi Running seemed to help me finding that inner zen.
After I was done, I could not wait to slip back into my car for the heater! I checked the average pace and was shocked to see 12’27”! Just Tuesday, I was ecstatic to break 13’54” And touching 12 minute was surreal! That same night, I told my husband and I could not help but said “I will turn on another app (Nike+) next run” This was too good to be true. Quicker and easier, just from practicing the basis of Chi Running?
Now, I’m not doubting Chi Running. If anything, I am super grateful to have discover this early on in my running adventure. I’m still building the confidence and skills of a runner therefore a healthy dosage of self doubt can go a long way. Let’s see how my LSD (not Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, Long Slow Distance run) pans out this weekend.