Recently I was inspired by a blog from No Meat Athlete (50 Lessons Learned From 50 Days of Running). It motivated me because it reinforced something I was slowly starting to come to realize.. I don’t have to run a half-marathon or marathon to be a runner! After my last couple half marathons, I realized I started dreading running. I was enjoying my short distances but still needed a goal. Lesson #12 was a big Aha! moment for me.. I found my new challenge!

12. Start small (really small) and have patience, and you’ll be far more likely to stick with it than if you go balls to wall out of the gate. I started with just 20 minutes a day for the first week. For some people, 5 minutes might be even better.

This simple lesson spurred me into taking on my own 30 day running spree. I am currently on Day 12 and I think I’ve learned something everyday. I am sticking with a minimum of at least 2 miles and peaked at 4.25 (yesterday.)

Here are my 12 lessons from my 12 days of running:

  1. Starting something is always easy. It is hard to keep the motivation, but I have noticed it has become a habit to run. Day 3-6 were the hardest walls.
  2. Alcohol is the devil. It impacts your run and mucks up your motivation! But after a night of drinks, finishing the run is a great accomplishment.
  3. I wonder what I was thinking picking July during one of the record-breaking months to start my running spree. The runs are rough but when it has cooled down, my runs are exponentially better and easier!
  4. On the same note as #43 from No Meat Athlete, your body does get acclimated to the heat after a few runs. I’ve been running in the mid-80 and 90 degree temps. I am surprised to say it isn’t really bothering me anymore.
  5. Baseball hats are my new fave running accessory. I am not pretty when I run. I sweat.. A lot.. This helps keep the sweat out of my eyes and the sun off my face..
  6. I am a GPS/ App phone junkie. I keep switching between Map My Run and Runkeeper. I realized knowing my distance/ speed helps to motivate me to keep going.
  7. Pinterest and running blogs like Salty Running are great motivators. I love the inspiring quotes and seeing woman just as busy (or more!) still finding time to run. It has helped me get off the couch after the kids go to bed (at 9pm or 10pm) to run.
  8. When I run in the morning or afternoon, I sleep like a baby.
  9. If I have a long run at night, insomnia keeps me up late.
  10. I’ve had my fair share of injuries; plantar fasciitis, IT band, runners knee, etc.. I can honestly say, I haven’t felt better since I started this. I wake up and walk on my tippy toes because I think my foot will hurt, but nada! I think the lower mileage has helped and doing exercise everyday has helped my body.
  11. Running while out-of-town is a great way to see a new place. I visited my BFF in Columbus and I got to run around her neighborhood. It was a nice change of pace and scenery.
  12. I feel truly peaceful and content after each run. Pinterest is right.. No one ever regrets a workout.

I have to say, although it’s been hard, I am very happy to make this commitment. I haven’t felt this good in years and I am proud to say I am making the commitment. I decided to only do 30 days, but a full week of running or walking everyday is an achievement. We need to challenge ourselves to grow.