a slacker’s take on streaking

There is really nothing worse (in the First World) than going running again after a 5-day break. I always feel slow and sluggish and impossibly fat the first day back, but I told myself while in Seattle, I’d only run if the timing was right and it made sense and wasn’t a huge pain in the ass and only if I felt like it, and wouldn’t get all pissy and bent if it didn’t happen.

Well, the stars didn’t align and really, who gives a shit? I’m not one of those sad, weird freaks who insists on getting up at the asscrack to go running on vacation. Especially since I hardly slept a wink with the baby trying to muscle me out of bed every five minutes with her tiny feet and eagle-talon toenails because I really do keep putting off clipping them because I’m scared to death of clipping off a toe because they are just so goddamn tiny.

Anyway, it’s cool because last week I ran 18 miles, a feat I haven’t accomplished in more than a year (we all know at this point I had a baby, right? I don’t have to keep telling you or linking back to some shit every time I mention it? Okay, good.), so it felt okay to take a break this week and only bust out nine.

Fancy workout log.

Anyway, since I just did a 5-day no running streak, I thought it might be fun to revisit the run streak I did and share with you all of my important thoughts on that.  (Not really, but isn’t that how you’re supposed to segue into whatever boring shit you think you can trick people into reading on your blog?)

Anyway (and that marks a record three paragraphs in a row beginning with anyway), here are my thoughts on run streaks, in the handy and easily digestible format made popular by CNET Reviews. And, just to disclaim, I know the streak only lasted 30 days, I’m not offering advice, I have no experience, I’m not a trainer, blah, blah, blah, I shouldn’t even be allowed on the internets. Just read it and shut the hell up.

The Good: One, a run streak can be motivational. I think I mentioned before that just watching the days stack up on the calendar made me totally anal and giddy. I didn’t want to see the ominous gap of failure in the streak, so I kept going (some days, against my better judgment). Two, you get to broaden yourself. Test the limits of your endurance, dig deep, all that shit. Three, you get to brag on the internets about what hot shit you are and trick people into reading your blog. 

The Bad: One, risk of injury. Especially if you’re just a fatass hobby jogger like me. Good runners run every day and get prizes. Mediocre runners run every day and get stress fractures. Two, in the grand scheme of things, a running streak is basically worthless. It doesn’t necessarily make you a better or faster runner because, as I am fond of saying, ONE MILE COUNTS. Three, if the only reason you’re running is to lose weight, a streak probably won’t work. You have to pull some serious mileage and do the obligatory strength work if you really want to see results. So in essence, streaking is masturbation: fun for you; serves no greater good.

The Bottom Line: Running streaks are mostly overrated. BUT, if you’re in decent shape (I wasn’t) and you vary your routine (I didn’t) and do strength work on the side (yeah right), a running streak can still be major big funsies (it was still kind of fun). Do a run streak for yourself, if you feel like it, but don’t expect anything earth-shattering to happen as a result, and don’t expect anyone to be impressed. If it’s enlightenment you seek, try ketamine.

Thoughts? What are you doing to injure yourself this week?

12 thoughts on “a slacker’s take on streaking

  1. I’ve been doing the Runner’s World running streak (Memorial Day-4th of July) and most days I just do 1 mile. Some days that’s a warm-up to the lifting I’ll be doing that day and some days I really don’t feel like doing anything else. I know I should at least make it worth getting sweaty, but when I’m going out at 11:40 or 11:50 (done this twice in the past couple days), I’m only going to do a mile. I do want to run longer, but I don’t really need to right now and the RW was just to help me get my mileage back up from a paltry 25 in May (being sick and lazy).

  2. The most awesome thing I have done lately in attempt to injure myself was to start running again AND to start P90X at the same time. And that same time was 8 weeks after giving birth. And about 6 months after my last run. Not sure what I’m trying to prove to myself. Maybe that I’m an idiot with no sense of moderation?

  3. I’ve got your “no running streak” beat by so freakin’ much you have no idea. Decade or more.

    On the other hand, the streak being motivational is totally up my alley. However, my streak why I do Daily Beer Review, not why I run. LOL.

      • The thing is, i really like them. Its hot as hell here you know, so not having to wear socks is just great. I am scaling up mileage though, planning on running a full marathon in them in Aug, about 50% of the time I feel foolish, but I do love those little ugly things so we’ll see!

  4. I think the “running streak” is the one motivational gimmick I’ve never fallen for over the years. I like rest days.

    As for this week, I am planning on applying sealant to our deck. Bring on the third degree sunburn!

  5. I’d like to try streaking…but my knees keep reminding me I spent years doing 2 hours of basketball a day and they’re done playing nice.

    Speaking of knees, I turned around today and tweaked one. And now it keeps threatening to collapse on me. Probably sensed that I planned to run today.

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