“Do I have enough time for a run?”

If you love long distance running as much as I do, this is definitely a question you have a pondered.  Trying to find enough time in a day to run as far as you would like, can sometimes feel impossible.

In the movie, “Burn After Reading” by the Coen Brothers, there is a character, Harry Pfarrer (played by George Clooney) whose memorable line throughout the movie is, “Maybe I can get a run in.”

I enjoyed the movie for its wit and humor, and really enjoyed this one line a lot.  Trying to get the run in can be daunting task with our busy schedules.

I’ve mentioned before that I have 3 busy kids and I have said goodbye to 120 pounds.  Exercise, healthy eating and my family are top priorities to me.  I ran track and cross country in high school and found a love for running.  Thank goodness, because I feel running is one of the fastest ways to burn calories and get in shape.  Since exercise is a top priority in my busy schedule, I try a few tricks to meet my daily exercise goals.

Tricks to Get the RUN IN

BREAK UP THE MILES

My morning goal is to hit 5 miles.  This workout is about the distance.  I want to hit 5 miles.  So I get up at 5:30 AM and hit the treadmill.  If I do not feel well, if I ran a longer distance the previous day, I will shoot for 3.  Speed is not always the priority, but the distance, 5 miles, is usually the goal.  After my morning 5 miles, I must start my day.  But given the opportunity, I will hit the trail or the treadmill again later in the day to add in some more miles.

Breaking up the miles to get a larger number for the day has its pluses and minuses.  I like to get more miles in.  I like to run, so anytime I can squeeze some extra miles in is definitely a plus for me.  But I do get concerned that breaking up the miles simply reiterates my ability to do a 5 mile run.  Being able to run, or a race a 10 miler or half marathon, I feel, takes time practicing actually running 10 miles or 13.1 at a time.  I give myself those opportunities as time allows, but in my day to day, I put in the miles when or wherever I can.

PACK RUNNING CLOTHES

Do you pack running clothes wherever you go?  I have some on hand in the car, too.  Ready to rock n roll whenever wherever the situation allows.

BE FLEXIBLE

Do I have to mention this one is hard for me?  Sometimes there is not a time or place to get in a good run.  But if you can be flexible, you can still get some exercise in.

I developed a heel spur from my “one more mile” mentality and lack of stretching.  I wouldn’t say I was a bear, or unbearable, to be around – but I did feel “off” if I did not get a run in on any given day.  Now, if I get completely stuck in time or location, I can usually find a way to get in some squats, push-ups, a lengthy plank or maybe even some sprints in.  Whatever I choose, I mentally tell myself how the exercise I am performing will help me as a runner.

OFF DAYS

I know this is kind of silly to say, but if you are like me, you still need to hear it.  TAKE “OFF DAYS.”  Uber running everyday can be harmful to your body.  Your muscles do need time to repair.  Cross Training and walking are 2 ways I still try to move my body when I take an off day from running.

Running and I are buddies.  I try my hardest to get to spend time with my buddy.  I like to spend a lot of time with my buddy.  But if we are going to get along for a long time, we have to take breaks from each other.

Breaking up my runs to fit my schedule, leaving running clothes in the car, being flexible and taking breaks are ways I get my miles and body ready for a nice scheduled long haul.  What do you do?  Let me know!

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