My new school schedule (it’s the second week of winter semester now) is kicking my ass this week….
..and it kind of feels good
It’s the same way a really hard workout leaves you panting on the floor in a pool of sweat, hurting but feeling good at the same time. The intensity and pace of it leaves you out of breath but you know the challenge is making you stronger even while it’s causing you pain. The pain is making you great. I know any distance runners who are reading this understand what I’m saying. It’s that “I just ran X amount of miles; I am super awesome!” feeling. (Maybe some of the rest of you are giving me that “Okay…you’re crazy” look) Because it’s difficult and demanding you either have to push your self to be better, be stronger, or you have to give up and walk home.
That’s what my schedule is like this semester, at least every other week when I have my kids. I’m taking three online classes and am on campus four days a week for one random chemistry class…that I’m really just taking for fun. Two days a week I only have class for an hour but I have a forty-five minute drive so it still consumes my entire afternoon. I don’t have any full week days that I’m not physically going to school like I did last semester so I don’t have any full days to catch up on my online class work and the many demands of keeping a household running (Fucking laundry, it never ends!).
And that is where my schedule pushes me to be better.
On the weeks that my kids are with me I feel like a serious bad ass just for making it through the day with everyone’s basic needs met (and, for the records, being on time to catch the bus is not a basic need).
I have to use ALL of my time efficiently. It’s a good thing, prevents laziness and all that. Plus it creates positive momentum. I’m in Get Shit Done mode, I have to keep moving so shit gets done which inspires me to get more shit done. Suddenly I am more motivated to run regularly again too because inevitably less available time=more motivation to do stuff.
And drinking way too much of things like this:
Being so busy all day, I need some sort of a break by the evening. If I take a nap or try to sit and relax for a little bit I lose the momentum of the day and the evening is a bust, nothing gets done. I can’t really afford to waste an evening with this schedule. So I’ve been running more regularly and it’s been pretty nice. Well, after I got some shoes that didn’t suck all the water out of the snow straight into my socks. Nothing like trying to run on blocks of ice! I thought maybe trail running shoes would help with the slippage factor of winter running too. These New Balance Minimus Amps have not disappointed. It’s great to come in from running through four of five inches of, unshoveled in a couple stretches, snow and still have dry feet.
My running app informed me the other day that I’ve run the same route more than four times in the past couple weeks. It’s a boring route too: up the block, straight through town to the end of the sidewalks, then turn around and come back. It’s a run that is really not too interesting but is a good go-to for a quick & easy 3.5 miles. This is a little odd for me. I like to change things up, have some different scenery every now and then. I’d prefer to get out in the woods and run too but I haven’t even missed that lately. Actually, I feel pretty satisfied with the same ol’ boring running route over and over again. The wintery terrain does help make it more interesting but it’s not that. There’s something about the repetition and routine of this run that allows me to shut my mind off and NOT focus on the demands of my life or really anything at all. It’s offered a true mental break. I come back from my boring 3.5 miles energized and ready to make the most of the last few hours of my day.