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August 1, 2007

They say ...

It takes at least 21 days to form a habit. This means that you have to do something at least 21 times before it begins to become part of your everyday routine.

I looked back at day 21 of Julyathon, to see if something changed. Was there some clue in my post that would lead you to believe I had now formed a habit? No. In fact I seemed a tad bitchy. Someone must have hacked into my blog and added bitchy tone. I definitely remember how tired I felt at that point, it was still something I was forcing myself to do everyday.

What about day 22? The habit should be formed by then. If habit comes in the form of inflated ego and self praise and blowing of ones own trumpet ... well people hold on to your hats I think we formed a habit!

Julyathon ... the good

It wasn't that hard. At least physically.

My legs felt better on the regularly scheduled runs (Tues, Thur, Sat and Sun). The short runs on Monday, Wednesday and Friday seemed to help my leg muscles, especially my calves.

I feel stronger.

I don't know if I have gotten faster - but I haven't gotten any slower. Looking at my average pace for the month, it is higher than June, but that includes my very slow and easy recovery runs. My average speed for tempo runs has gone down, training run pace is down and long runs are about the same.

I have greater endurance.

I feel entirely different about running now. It's part of my day like brushing my teeth. Before I would think, okay if you want to do this marathon, then you are going to have to run tonight. But if I really didn't want to run, or I didn't like the workout, then I wouldn't do it. If someone invited me out, I'd sacrifice a run. It's not like I'm going to win a race, one run isn't going to make me faster.

I get how seeing improvement can motivate you.

Julyathon ... the not-so-good

It was hard. At least fitting it into my life, keeping some kinda balance between running, working, personal.


I am tired, like I could crawl into bed and sleep for hours tired.

My house is a mess

The first 4.95 kms of a 5k recovery run

The breakdown

274 km or 164.4 miles (almost double my June mileage)
Total runs = 31
Runs on treadmill = zero
Really bad runs = 7
Really good runs = 5
Falls = 1 (on trail, day 22)
Massages = 1
Number of days I didn't want to run = 12
Drugs = 2 ibuprofen, 2 Tylenol
Number of kicks up the butt I needed = 8
Runs alone = 13
Blisters = 4 (from 10k race, none since)
Motivating comments and encourage words = 3,897,227.36

To keep going or stop?

I am leaning towards continuing. I did run this morning, making it 32 runs in a row. I don't want to become a streaker or break any records. But it keeps me focused and accountable. I see and feel real benefits from it, which is motivating me, something I haven't felt in a long time with running. It also feels anticlimactic to stop now.

I did all that? What for? To stop?

With all that said, I need to actually say it, put it out there. I can't run day to day without it being part of a larger goal. I need that pressure, guilt, accountability to get me out the door. Of course, I am all for doing this now, I got today's run in when it was cool. If I had to do it tonight, when it's 104 outside, you'd be reading ... been there, done that, got nothing to prove people. Move along, Julyathon is over, it's bon bons on the sofa tonight!

Friday will be judgment day. I have a scheduled run tomorrow night, so 33 is taken care of. Friday is the hardest day to get a run in.

I am physically unable to get out of bed early to run. I'll probably get fired if I leave work again at 2pm. I'm Irish with alcoholic tendencies, therefore I must drink on Friday nights. Maybe I'll wait and have the decision made for me. Like some sort of fate ....

Posted by Ali at August 1, 2007 10:29 AM


Congratulations! I always schedule Friday as an off day becuase I do my running in the evenings and there's always something better to do on Friday evenings.

Posted by: Vanilla at August 1, 2007 12:58 PM

really inspiring:) well done...

Posted by: londonjogger at August 1, 2007 4:03 PM

You keep saying you're going to quit, but you haven't. We don't believe you any more. :)

Posted by: Amanda at August 1, 2007 4:34 PM

i loved julyathon. i'm thinking of a septemberahton. which might be hard because my hands will cramp from typing septemberathon.

Posted by: Susan at August 1, 2007 5:22 PM

very impressive and inspiring!

Posted by: Jessica at August 1, 2007 5:24 PM

This post was really inspiring. It's making me consider an August-a-thon...

Posted by: Allison at August 1, 2007 5:33 PM

Great job.Now find what fits your daily routine and keep it.If running everyday is what you want than do it.When is your next race?
You are inspiring.Thank you!!!

Posted by: rae at August 1, 2007 11:06 PM

Your Julyathon has been so inspiring. I'm thinking of an August-polluza for myself. I need a little kick in my pants.

Posted by: jkrunning at August 2, 2007 9:23 AM

Good Job, that is very impressive.

Posted by: kiki at August 2, 2007 3:26 PM

great job. the motivation and dedication was amazing. kind of inspires me to do something for myself, maybe in the winter when i know it will difficult for me to motivate myself to run. great inspiration and keep up the running!!

Posted by: Kelsey at August 2, 2007 3:45 PM

WooHoo!! well done. i knew you could do it!

Posted by: deene at August 5, 2007 8:18 AM

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