The 100 Mile Challenge

“Believe in yourself!  Have faith in your abilities!  Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.” ~Norman Vincent Peale

I decided that I would go again tonight, even though I knew it would be painful and tiring and slow.I didn’t make it for too long.  It was right before dinner and it was about 95 degrees…in the sun…and I was wearing black (what was I thinking?). The point is that I was sore, but I did it anyway.  The point is that I was tired, but I did it anyway.  The point is that I didn’t want to, but I did it anyway.  I did something.

I always heard that adage that exercise is supposed to make you happy.  While I do love my gym time (no kids, no husband, no one’s judgement) I never really got that “happy feeling” after a workout.  Better mood, yes, but happy?  No.

Until today…

After running my very slow run I came home and stretched for a full 20 minutes.  Then had dinner.  During dinner, I felt it.  Those endorphins that everyone is always talking about when it comes to exercise…and I loved it.

It made me realize there is more to this idea of running than losing weight, looking better, and building muscle.  My mental health can improve through all this too, and honestly, after what I’ve been through the past 6 months, this is the most important factor to keep me going.

In typical me fashion, though, I almost feel like I can’t do this without some sort of motivator…some sort of challenge.  So I am creating one for myself.  I tend to do this running “thing” for a few weeks before I become bored or frustrated or both.  I begin to feel like I’m not getting anywhere or am never going to be able to “really run” so I decide to move on to something else.  Not this time.  I’m going to stick with it until it kills me…because chances are it will do the exact opposite.

Without further ado…the challenge.  I’ve decided that between now and Christmas I will run/walk 100 miles.  That’s 17 weeks.  That’s approximately 5-6 miles per week, which is completely doable, and maybe even a little too easy.  The thing is, I know that life happens, illness happens, kids happen, weather happens.  And if set my goals to high, I may never achieve them.  IF it comes to the point that I will definitely meet my goals, I can always add more.  Here are the rules for my challenge.

  1. All miles must be intentional.  While I prefer that they all be running, I’m not naive and I know it will be awhile until I get there.  While walking is also fine, all miles must be accumulated when exercise is intentional.  I can’t just turn a pedometer when walking around the mall and have it count.  It has to be when I am actively seeking out exercise.
  2. All miles must take place on the road (track, trail) or treadmill.  No elliptical or pool miles allowed.
  3. No more than 35 miles may take place on a treadmill.  I’ve found that treadmills are a lot easier than roads so I need to have a real challenge.
  4. Miles in conjunction with races (Color Run, Color Me Rad, etc.) will count towards the final number.  If I’m putting in the work, I should get the benefits.
  5. Except in the event of (real) injury, I may not quit.

I’m sure I’ll add more rules as they come up, but I feel like, for now, this should cover it.  I’m excited about this challenge as well as having a “real world” long term goal.  I’m even more excited about the long term benefits, not only to my body, but to my soul.

In general, I’m excited.  Are you?

Miles to date: 3

5 thoughts on “The 100 Mile Challenge

  1. I am excited! I think it’s a great idea. That runner’s high, it’s beautiful. I actually find that jogging is one of the only ways I can really relax. It’s like my meditation. Watch out, you’ll be hooked!

  2. Sounds like a great challenge! After a summer of really doing nothing exercise-wise myself, I got back on the bandwagon this morning and was able to clock in 2 miles. I may keep tabs with you. It could help keep both of us from getting bored. 🙂

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