My Training Log Just Woke from a Deep Sleep


For many, many years (like, early 1990s to the late aughts) I kept track of my training on paper calendars. First, I used those pocket-sized calendars you could get for free with a Hallmark store purchase and later for $1 at a Dollar Tree. I was quite diligent about documenting my runs and cross-training, if only out of habit. Rarely did I consult the logs; I just enjoyed those few seconds of satisfaction recording my commitment.


Then I migrated to a now-defunct social media platform for runners and triathletes. It was even easier to keep track of how much mileage I logged. But the social component had me veering off course. I’d make “friends” with high-mileage runners and suddenly feel less adequate. I commuted by bike to my job at the time, riding 10 miles each way with most of the return 10 all uphill. And still, I didn’t feel worthy because Penelope was for amateurs (even local police told me this!). Some people I followed appeared to do little but work out when they weren’t actually working. They’d break an ankle on an icy run and do hot yoga and advanced Pilates for six weeks to stay conditioned. I questioned my own commitment to personal fitness. It should be noted that during the four years I was active on the site, my running didn’t improve. That said, I did make some amazing friends IRL and that more than offset the lack of progress.


I deleted my account and migrated to another, simpler online training log. You could publicly display your entries or keep them private, which I did. Or, should I say, still do. A quick look at entries the past 15 months shows inconsistent activity. I’d be on a streak and then—poof!—blank entries for the remainder of the month, whether I did physical activity or not. This never bothered me … until now.


I am going to be doing a very long day hike in early August with three other women in much better shape than me. They are all younger and have more time to prepare this summer. Over Memorial Day weekend, I decided to re-sort my daily activities now that it’s much easier to wake early and get things done before people need me.


I unofficially started with an easy, 5-mile hike near my home on Saturday, followed by back-to-back hilly 3-mile runs. Both were slow, but I’m hoping a recommitment to BodyPump and, soon, rowing at my old gym will round out an aggressive (for me) regimen. Then, I’ll only need to worry about someone being sucker-punched once I board my plane.


Part of what running blogs used to be back in the day were accountability vehicles to ensure we did what we intended. I’m ready to resume that practice here. I’ve even warned family of my new daily priority lists, which will include one weekly rest day—maybe more if I’m really sore. I will make sure I log plenty of daily activity. Then I will rejoice at hopefully not falling apart in the Colorado Rocky Mountains a mere two months from now.


Photo from last weekend's hike in Los Penasquitos Preserve

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