Taking a break vs falling off the bandwagon

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Today morning I was checking Timehop and came across the fb post from 3 years back where I was overjoyed at working out 6 days in a week. It reminded me of the time when I was trying to run/gym 24 days in a month. It took a few months of pushing myself to get there and I started with 15 days, then 20 days, 21 days and finally, 24 days. One step at a time. Pick the battle, win it and get to the next one.

Years of training makes you recognise the thin line between falling off the bandwagon and taking a break. Even experienced runners with timing of sub 2 hours at their half marathon can fall off the bandwagon and come down to 2 hrs 30 mins.

I missed my 18 km run 2 Sundays back because I was exhausted. Last Saturday night I was in Pune staying over at a friend’s house. The food didn’t agree with me and I ended up puking my guts out. Travelling 45 mins at 5 am for a 18 km run was out of the question. I decided make up for it on Tuesday when I was in Delhi. But everything seemed to be going against me:

  • None of the running groups were planning more than 10 km run and the route wasn’t the one where I would be able to find an additional 8 km
  • I woke up late and had to plan logistics of a late morning run without having to run loops. The only option was Sanjay Van but I hadn’t run there alone and late in the morning. Was it safe? I decided to take a chance
  • I had left my bottle of water home and forgot to buy one on the way. So, there I was, at Sanjay Van at 8 am, alone and without hydration

There was every reason to back out and cancel the run but getting back on track would be double the hard work. I told myself “I am going to run 18 km, no matter what”. And I did. 1 km at a time, one track at a time. The weird part was it wasn’t hard at all. There was a drinking water tap which served as my hydration point. There was a clean loo. The weather was quite pleasant and the heat stayed away in the shade of trees. There were many other runners training for ADHM. When I needed a change, I ran on the road outside IIFT. I wasn’t happy with the timing but I can either train for distance or for speed.

Things don’t change overnight. You can’t go from a couch potato to a fitness freak or from junk eating to eating healthy in a few days or weeks. It takes months and sometimes years. And it never ends. Everyday is a struggle, everyday is about making mistakes, getting up, learning from them and moving on. I am struggling to get 15 mins in the morning to cook breakfast. That is step 1 for me. Below are others that I need to focus on this month:

  • Have breakfast of omelette or sunny side up eggs every morning
  • Have boiled eggs as snack
  • Salads for dinner

Once I have tackled above, will change my lunch.

Ciao. Am off to bed.


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