My 6-month run challenge (weeks 20-22): on run-volutions and ruminations

We are nearing the end of my 6-month run challenge, and as I recap the past few weeks, I’m purposely trying to save my final thoughts under the ‘official’ 6-month mark, because I think the next couple week’s worth of running will still give me plenty more to ruminate over.


After declaring that I am running less for mileage and more for joy, and doing a run-speriment to purposely try and run on the freshest legs I can, whenever possible, I have noticed a difference in my runs and a release in my brain (yet again) of the pressure I self-inflict on myself to perform. This run-speriment and run challenge overall has nothing to do with performance. Why? Because I am not performing against anyone or anything. I am simply running for me, and seeing what I can do to refocus my mind on the enjoyment of the run, on focused, calm breathing, and on steady, happy, consistent runs, as much as possible. 

It’s when I slide into worry about a bad run, or that I’m struggling more than I think I should, or when I get frustrated that running just doesn’t come as naturally to me as I would like it to, that I start to allow the overthinking to creep in. The overthinking that I’ve worked so damn hard to break away from.

But lately? I’ve reallyreallyreally shut my brain off, not thought about how many runs I want to get into a given week (until that week starts), nor thought about mileage as much. I’ve simply run to run, to move, to sweat, and to enjoy each run as much as possible.

It is starting to feel like a run-volution (<–like that? a riff on ‘evolution?’ Ok I am a dork, what can I say?) of sorts. And I am really digging it. I actually caught myself smiling as I ran with M yesterday. And realized my mind was wandering on things other than my run. Gasp! Is it really working? Am I really running for fun and actually *having* fun?

I do believe I am.

And I sure as hell hope this continues. Because as my mind wanders, it starts to go back to the ‘what-if’s’ – the what if ‘this sticks’ and what if I naturally start to again want to run longer, explore my limits again? Well, my friends, the sky is the limit. And I will always be the first one to say ‘never say never’ to any of that. 

And that’s what I love most about running. The constant run-volution. The constant ‘why I run’ answer (it’s always evolving, er, run-volving, and I LOVE that, as my sis pointed out too!). The constant growth, change, motivation.

It’s why I never stop. It’s why I will keep forging on. It’s why I am always looking for that breakthrough moment. I feel it could very well be near. And I hope it is. Either way? I am running for fun. And it feels simply great.


Well, friends, I am off to Atlanta today for the Digital Summit. A quick two-day trip, flying home Thursday night. These are the trips I like. Quick, same time zone, and about social media? Bring it on. AND as a huge bonus? I get to attend the conference WITH Lee from In My Tummy (who actually mentioned this conference to me, thank you!) and Tina from Best Body Fitness. I won’t lie…I am most excited about meeting them both, and a close second is actually attending the conference and social-media-geeking-out 😉


22 thoughts on “My 6-month run challenge (weeks 20-22): on run-volutions and ruminations

    1. I wish you could too!! And I am trying my best to just enjoy that I can run, and that I actually – gasp enjoy it, even those pesky 4 milers 😉

  1. I LOVE that you’re letting yourself get into the run and truly enjoy the moments, vs. sliding into overthinking mode. I do believe you are on the verge of yet another running breakthrough. I can’t wait to see what’s around the bend for you, sis! Love this.

    1. I think the not overthinking part is big for me, because if I just go out and run and it’s good, or even semi-good, it makes me look forward to the next, not worry that I’ll have a bad run or something. I am all for breakthroughs too 🙂

  2. 6 months, holy cow. I can’t believe it – that there shows your absolute determination. And look what all you’ve overcome and discovered – and taught me!

    Can I get a hell yes-> less for mileage and more for joy.

    Do what FEELS good! Documenting your journey is definitely something to help others.

    1. HELL YES! 🙂 Thank you! I know, time has been flying since I set out on this little challenge of mine! I feel like a better runner, and a happier one, and that’s what matters most! If I can help anyone else in their journey? I’d LOVE that.

  3. I love this, Jo. I love that you’re running for you and not for anyone or anything else. Re-evaluating what you want out of your running experiences is proving to be a tremendous help in how you feel about the physical runs and the mental/emotional aspect. That’s BIG. My worst days are those that I focus mainly on the run itself and not me.

    Have a safe trip, friend!

    1. It’s helpful to think through why I react the way I do to certain runs, and how my reasons for running, and the types of runs that I do are and that they change and evolve sometimes too. I hate when I focus on the negative (bad runs) vs things like the fact that I CAN and AM running, period. And thank you!

  4. I think it’s also important to remember that running doesn’t come naturally to most people. Even people who run a lot still struggle feeling bad while they’re doing it. At least, I think so! It certainly does not come naturally to me, that’s for sure!

    See you tomorrow!!

    1. Exactly! It’s not natural for everyone, and for me, I definitely have to work at it, but that’s also why I love it. The challenge!

  5. I am working on that “getting back to basics running” for the rest of this month, post-race, post-injury, pre-giantfreakingmarathontrainingplan. It’s important to keep that run for fun, run for you, perspective going.

    P.S. Totally jealous of your trip, have the best time!

  6. I think I’m actually in the midst of a Run-volution as well. And I didn’t really realize it or think about it in such a way until your post about not comparing and not being jealous of your sister’s amazing PR. And another crazy thing- this morning as I was running on the treadmill I also caught myself smiling!! I truly think it was one of the first times I was actually displaying positivity while running instead of automatically thinking of my run as torture! IT WAS PURE BLISSSSS!!! 😀 Let’s keep up the good work- wait, NOT WORK- FUN!!

    1. I love this!! So glad to hear that, and think that freeing yourself from comparing and just trying to focus on you, you, you, and YOUR run is the key. It’s hard to do but you, and I, can do it!!! GO YOU!

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