For this particular training cycle which, as you probably know, has been a whopper, I've come to appreciate and even to look forward to the 8 mile recovery day. It's my "easiest" day of the week and usually falls on Tuesday, after my long run and occasionally on a Saturday during a pull back week. Regardless of what state I'm in, this workout is both mentally digestible and physical manageable. And given the intensity of the rest of my training lately, along with the typical chaos of my life as a mom and coach, it's one of the few days that I know I will have little to no problem getting through. It's like a gift, really. One that I no longer take for granted and happily milk for all it's worth, which as it turns out, is a lot. Below is a list of all the amazing things associated with the easy 8 mile recovery day. I'm already anticipating my next one....4 days, 2 hours and 38 minutes from now.
TOP 10 REASONS TO LOVE THE EASY 8
2. I don't have to get up at the crack of dawn to make it work. I can even take my time getting ready and enjoy a leisurely cup of coffee before I head out. Added bonus, my girls are usually still sleeping when I get home which means no one needs me. Yet.
3. There is zero planning involved. I don't need to map out a route the night before, don't need to make sure I can get water along the way, don't need to create a new playlist for motivation. Heck, I can even run without music for about an hour if necessary. Not that I do.
4. It's the perfect mental break. Just enough time to clear my mind or zone out but not enough to start questioning what I'm doing and why. (you can imagine the conversations I have with myself on a 20+ miler)
5. It's the lowest amount of mileage I can comfortably do without needing food before I go. Sounds ridiculous, but it's a nice bonus. Goes back to #2 and the fact that I don't need to get up extra early and #3 in that I don't need to plan out a pre-workout breakfast the night before.
6. I can always get it done. I can wake up sore and tired (happens often) and/or totally unmotivated (happens daily) and I still know that I can eek out an easy 8. Knowing is half the battle.
7. There is no gear necessary. I don't need anything beyond my shoes, to get through it. Case in point, last Monday night I forgot to charge my watch. Typically, this would result in a freak out if I have a hard workout or long day ahead of me. For the easy 8, it doesn't matter as I can almost do this run with my eyes closed at this point.
8. I can function quite well for the rest of the day. I'm able to shower (rarely happens right after a run), do a bunch of errands, maybe even eat a meal sitting down, then get through XC practice and make it home to my girls with enough energy to pretend like I'm normal.
9. Pace doesn't matter. I can bring Clover along, I can stop and smell the flowers, heck, I can skip if I want to. This objective of this run is to flush my legs from all the hard work of the day before or from the week in general. That's it. If you see me dancing on the road, it's probably a Tuesday.
10. I can drag almost anyone along with me. My running partner, my sister-in-law, my dog, my daughter, my LHS athletes; someone is always up to joining me for a recovery day. Maybe not for the whole thing, but easily for 4 or 5 miles. And it's always nice to have company.
Train hard. Dream big. Run easy. #EASY8
Listen to this:
WAIT! by Common Deer