Easy Miles vs Junk Miles!!!
Over the years of running, there are a few things that I’ve learned. While I might be slower than I used to be right now (that will change with some good ol’ fashioned hard work) I am injured a WHOLE lot less. I’m pretty sure at the beginning of this blog there was a quarterly major injury going on. I think one of the many parts of that is that I figured out the difference between easy miles and junk miles.
Yesterday I jumped on the treadmill, had a book to read on my iPad and everything ready to go and I pushed the stop button at 22 seconds. Not because I was tired or didn’t feel like running but because I have learned to listen closely to what my body is saying to me.
I quickly realized that my 6 easy miles yesterday that I had planned would actually be 6 junk miles within 22 seconds into the run.
Hungry Runner Girl’s opinion on this matter (without any scientific proof backing it up which has changed over the years):
There are so many incredible benefits to doing our easy runs. I don’t personally think that if we just make sure to do our long run and tempo/speed run each week that we are then able to just rock our races, I think that easy runs are also a huge part of our training. There is a reason that easy runs are built into each training plan, they are part of the plan to help us get stronger and faster. The physiological benefits are there and mentally those easy runs are great because they give you a chance to sit back and enjoy the scenery and/or conversation with your running pals.
But then I think there are days where what we call ‘easy runs’ are really junk miles because they are doing more harm than good —> that is when I call miles junk miles. I don’t think it happens very often because I think that there are benefits that occur with most of our miles but they do happen. And I think junk miles are when the injuries start to happen.
I knew from the very beginning yesterday that running the day after my 20 miler was not going to build me up, but a day of stretching (above is my current favorite stretch) and some core work would. Today I’ve got a trail run with Josse (with some ridiculous hills involved) and cutting out the run was going to be better for me than pushing through it (like I used to do no matter what my body was screaming at me).
Plus, I’d most certainly rather be a few miles undertrained when I get to the starting line than overtrained.
Knowing the difference of ‘yeah, I need to push it and stop with all of my excuses if I want to hit my goals’ and ‘yeah, running today is probably going to do more harm than good’ is key (I think) when it comes to marathon training.
(From Hansons Marathon Method—> my usual goto book on training)
With summer feeling like it is going to end before we know it (and be back to that fun snow/icy/2 degree weather again) we decided we were going to fit in as much as we could yesterday.
The kids first came up with this idea. Probably not the most efficient form of transportation but they did get up to about .002 miles per hour. And Beretta just stood there staring at the ball (well, it used to resemble a ball at one point) waiting until we started playing fetch with her.
We found a river to sit at and throw rocks in for awhile.
We visited my sister and had a deep conversation with little O while I fed him rice.
There was even an Elsa sighting. I don’t think Brooke’s face in this picture is an accurate portrayal of what she was really feeling during this moment.
We hit up Riverwoods with my mom and made it through the fountains without getting wet.
Oh, and we ate peaches. Not much better than peach season and trumpets. If you come to Utah at anytime, I strongly believe this is the time to do it… because then you can just eat peaches from the orchards close by all day and you’ll be happy.
Fun fact—> Andrew and Megan D’s husband are buddies and they mountain bike together. Megan D and I eat treats while talking a lot and so the combination of the four of us works out quite nicely. They invited us over for dinner and we were both excited for one of her fancy meals.
She needs to give me cooking lessons. Andrew and I kept going back for more.
We brought over dessert… Andrew requested me to pick up Shirley’s bakery cinnamon rolls.
It was a marvelous selection decision. Cinnamon rolls are the new donuts at our house this last week.
Oh, and this is exciting. We will have baseboards soon!!! We bought them at Home Depot (already primed) and painted them and then have someone installing them today! We will definitely do a tour and before/after of the house once it is all done!
What are you excited for this weekend?!
What are your definitions of easy runs and/or junk miles?
Done any renovations yourself at your house? Any that you want to do?
Who has a race or long run this weekend—> you excited?