If you've been following along this little journey of mine, you might have noticed that I made this great proclamation that I was (again) running every day starting September 1st and I was determined and unstoppable! A few days later then (yes, only 4 to be precise) you might have noticed a gap on my mileage where a run was nary to be found. Which is pretty pathetic, but something came up and no matter how big a fit I threw about it, the run was not happening.
I was still upset about the run-that-wasn't the next day as my mom and I set out to run 15 miles together. Ridiculously upset about it. Beating myself up about it. I was having a good run though and at about mile 11, I had a thought, Why on earth am I stressing myself out about something that is optional?
Running is not my job (thanks B.O.B for reminding me of this), the world does not fall to pieces when I miss a run, and this is just my silly plan anyway. So I decided to write myself a loophole: if I miss a run one day, I just have to make it up. Which means some days I'll have a two-fer. Which isn't a bad thing, either. It still adds up to 365, right?
I think this loophole was inspired by an event in my classroom last week. Each night, I have my students read for 20 minutes and record their books in a reading log. I check their logs each day to make sure they've read. Last week, I had a studious, obedient little girl practically in tears because she hadn't read the night before. She was so embarrassed and stammering, "I'm so sorry! I really like this book and I meant to read, but I had dance class and church and we were at my Grandma's and then my mom made me go to bed."
Even when you're in fourth grade, life's like that sometimes. You just can't fit it all in (even when it's just a 10 minute run or 20 minutes reading) and you have a parent (or a husband) that insists upon a bedtime (especially when the treadmill in is the bedroom). So, without hesitation, I told this student, "Honey, it's okay. Read an extra day this weekend. You'll catch up. It's not a big deal."
And I've decided to tell myself the same thing (except, you know, about the running). So, if see a gaping 0 on my mileage, look for an extra run the next day, or on the weekend. It'll be there. That slightly painful extra mile later in the day after the 15-miler is proof. As will be my extra run this weekend for Tuesday. Just keep me accountable!