You may remember me blogging about this in November and you've seen the daily running shoe photos if you follow me on Instagram, but I ran at least one mile every day from Thanksgiving Day to New Year's Eve. It worked out to 40 runs. Some a bit longer than a mile, but all at least one mile.
I tried this experiment in 2011 as well and really loved it, especially as the year wrapped up. This year I was excited to try again, but a bit nervous because I was pregnant and up until Thanksgiving week didn't have much energy to excercise. My plan was to just give myself permission to walk if I wasn't feeling it, but it turned out that I was able to keep running throughout. I have been so grateful for the daily motivation to get outside and stay active, especially in this busy time of year.
I definitely got slower as the days went by and my stomach grew. But, thankfully, my first trimester wrapped up well and I've felt great throughout the second. The miles this year actually felt easier than last year and I think it's because I am doing a better job staying hydrated and eating well. It's been a very good lesson on the value of taking care of myself, even after I stop being a home for this little one.
This last week was the best of the challenge because Paul has had time off and we were able to run on the bike trails up by where our parents live. I appreciate the change of scenery and chance for longer runs and much prefer having a partner to talk and run with instead of just music in my headphones. As we were finishing on the 29th, I asked Paul if he thought I should end on 12/31 or run the 1st to finish off the project. He looked at me sideways and said, "Oh babe... I think you're done."
And he's right. This project is ending at the right time for my body and I'm going to be moving on to my next phase of pre-natal exercise. (Which right now will consist of long walks and - fingers crossed - daily yoga.)
Of all the goals I set and long-term projects I work on, committing to running a mile a day is definitely my favorite. For one thing - it's free. It costs me nothing to step outside and run around for ten minutes. For another, it has a set time frame. You start and you end and if you skip a day, you skip a day, but the period is pre-determined and that keeps me motivated. And last, it's mentally, physically and yep, even spiritually amazing to detach from the world for a short period of time each day and do something just for you. There is something powerful that comes from making a promise to yourself and then honoring it. That promise is what mile a day is about for me.
If you joined in this year, even just for a few days, congrats! I hope it was an inspiring and exciting challenge for you! I loved looking through all the photos on the #mileaday hashtag on instagram. If you would like to start now, I say GO FOR IT. Set a time period and just. start. moving.
technical info : all photos were taken with my iPhone which I carry in my hand on my daily runs and processed with the Valencia filter on Instagram. My shoes are New Balance Minimus (similar here) with orange laces from Target. I LOVE THEM, but take a lot of getting used to (and can cause injuries) if you are not a forefoot runner because they are so low support. I wear lululemon run crops almost every run. :)