Then and Now

As I attempt to get back to my former running times (from about 10-15 years ago) it’s interesting for me to make comparisons on how my training and approach to running has changed.  I think I can attain my previous PB’s because I’m now more experienced, smarter, stronger (mentally – maybe even physically) and probably equally motivated.  Some things in my life however have changed – 10-15 years ago I didn’t have two kids and I didn’t have a job which demanded 9-5 Monday-Friday hours.  So here’s my comparison of what’s happening differently, and we’ll see if it can still get me to the same place…

THEN                                                    

I thought a lot about my big efforts beforehand, and would wait until my body and the timing felt right before tackling them.

NOW

I head out whenever I have the opportunity regardless of how I feel.  Sometimes I’m halfway through a workout before assessing whether I’m ready.

THEN

Post hard run/workout I would eat a mix of protein and carbs in my 30 minute “optimum recovery window” and rest my body and/or nap to fully reap the benefits of the effort.

NOW

After I’ve spent 1-2 hours away from the family I’m usually ON as soon as I get back and we head out for some release of kids’ physical activity (playing in the park, swimming, skating, toboggoning,…)  I usually “recover” with a coffee and leftovers from small plates and hands (grilled cheese sandwich crusts, half-eaten bananas, etc…).  On weekdays it’s straight into a day at the office, so that’s usually the best recovery, although sadly, still no naps.

THEN

I cross-trained one or two times a week.  Usually working complementing muscle groups and core.

NOW

My life is a cross-training session.  I’m often carrying kids and/or their belongings for what feels like miles.  I hope the muscle fatigue I feel in daily chores will somehow benefit my running.

THEN

I wore running shoes everywhere I went.  If I wasn’t running I was recovering from or preparing for a training session.

NOW

I vainly try to wear heels to boost my confidence level in the office.  This has led to “mystery” injuries which strangely don’t seem to hurt while running.  In running shoes.  I am trying to shelve the vanity and revert to flats – I’m trying…

THEN

I trained for races which fit my training cycle and schedule.  I would seek out the fastest courses and always race for time.  Warm-ups were down to a science.

NOW

I race where opportunity presents itself and usually only close to home.  I have been known to try to incorporate my family into the “fun” of the experience – with mixed results.  One event where I tried to incorporate the Kids’ Fun Run with my race ended in me missing the start as I tried to corral my kids to the line, still running and winning the 5 km but passing my husband carrying one upset person and dragging one crying/protesting person 500 m before the finish line in their desperate attempt to finish 1 km.

Despite what it may look like, I do still have confidence that my new approach will net me just as fast times.  There’s nothing like being hungry for the time and opportunity to run as the ultimate motivator.  Time will tell!

2 Comments

  1. Martha

    Hi. Just saw your blog today for the first time. You are expressing lots of the same things I have been dealing with lately. Namely, I realized I haven’t had a breakthrough with running in 12 years. When I look back at my training then and see what kind of training and rehab time I now have it is a little depressing. So, I will look to you for inspiration that PBs are still possible after 2 kids and with considerably less time available! Good luck!

    1. seannamrobinson

      Woohoo go for it Mart! Sometimes it’s nice to have a past benchmark cause you know what you were physically capable of doing. I too am curious as to whether I can do the same things with a more packed life. I think so. As my sister says, it’s about Ruthless Prioritization. Love that phrase. Good luck!

Leave a Reply