You never know exactly how many muscles are in your legs until you start a new running program and they are all simultaneously angry at you.

I had forgotten the sore ankles and cranky feet, the way I want to eat everything in sight, and my propensity to feel like a zombie at the beginning of a training block. Add to that the strength training I’ve been doing, the training I’m doing with my clients, rand the fact that my studio is on the second floor and requires multiple trips up and down with 80 lbs of weights, and I’m just about as tired as humanly possible. And you know what? I’m loving it.

I missed running around town wherever my feet decided to take me. I missed waking up and feeling the fatigue in my legs. I mostly missed eating all the snacks during a long run. 

Despite all that, it’s been a little hard to find the motivation to run 5 times a week, especially when the heat index is 107. Generally, when I get out the door and start running, the fatigue fades away and I’m able to enjoy the run without too much trouble. But last week I was running around like a baby horse with legs made of lead. 

I poured much water on my face, sat on a few curbs and contemplated why running sounded like a good idea in the first place, and generally complained my way through a whole week. Nothing felt great until my long run. I forced myself to slow down, put on funny podcasts, and ate a lot of snacks. I floated in a creek, went to the bathroom in the woods, and just generally looked like a sweaty mess that was having a torturously good time. And I was. 

Not every week of training is going to be amazing and transcendent. In fact, approximately 1.5 out of 12 will probably feel pretty okay. But there are plenty of good moments that outweigh the others- airplane arms down a big hill, that perfect splash of water on my disgustingly sweaty face, and the last few steps of a run toward my house where I can lie half dead on the floor eating a popsicle. There is so much good to be found.