I Had the Runs Bad (But They Got Good)

Heading into last weekend’s 10k, my first couple weekday runs had drained my confidence.  It started with a simple 3 miler.  It did not go well.  I felt like I was really working hard, only to finish and see my pace was way slower than my runs were the previous week.

Then the next day at my track workout, I wanted to quit after the first 400.  I didn’t, but it wasn’t pretty.

So my running confidence went from high to low.  But then came the next day.  I met up with my friends at Thursday Night Social Run.

In my run fighting stance.

In my run fighting stance.

After a disappointing couple of runs, I figured that maybe I needed rest.  My plan was to take it easy.  Just jog it out and do a mini ‘taper’ for the race.  Well, that didn’t happen.  I got to talking to a buddy on the run, and before I knew it we were done and I had run my goal race time in our three miler jaunt.

I'm the monkey in the middle.

I’m the monkey in the middle.

This performance gave me the confidence I needed for the race.  Just like that, I knew I’d be ok come race day.  And I was!  If you read that post, you saw that I PR’d (PB’d), despite a week of mostly cruddy runs.

Feelin tired, but feelin better.

Afta da ra…ce.  Feelin tired, but feelin better.

The moral of the story is this:  You can never get down because of one run/workout/day.  If you have a ‘bad’ one, chances are next time will be better.  There will always be off days.

Of course, there’s a lot of factors that go into this – what you ate/drank, how much you slept, weather, etc. etc. etc. etc.  But if you stay diligent and consistent, then good things will happen.

How bout you?  Run confidence ever shaken then restored?  What snaps you out of it? 



Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

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31 thoughts on “I Had the Runs Bad (But They Got Good)

  1. Ahhhh the dreaded bad run. One bad run keeps ya honest. Without the bad runs, the good wouldn’t seem so sweet. Way to rally Mr. PBR. (Oh wait. That’s so hipster of me. 🙂 )

    • Hmmm, good point! As I say to my boss when I write my ‘humorous’ tv scripts – “They can’t all be winners.”
      And thank you! I will enjoy my Peanut Butter Ribbon! Now you go enjoy your horned rimmed glasses, skinny jeans, and ironic hat!

  2. Way out go on the personal best!
    Ah- the bad runs suck but they really do make the bad ones that much better. I had a few doozies of bike rides where I felt like throwing my bike in the ditch and calling a cab. The next bike rides were always great!

    • Thank you!!!
      It always perplexes me when I think I’m having a good run only to see I was way behind normal. And other days I feel like I’m just jogging and I’m really crushing it. Crazy!
      Haha, I can just picture you sitting by the side of the road waiting for the cab and when it shows you are trying to stuff your bike in the trunk. Keep on keepin on!

  3. How about an off month? haha, hopefully my race this weekend works like yours did 🙂 Congrats on coming back strong after a couple of off days.

    • Thank you! I was worried for a second there, but it turned out fine! Best of luck on your race. Hopefully all the rest will pay off! 😉

  4. All the time really. I have a bad run at least once every 2 weeks but I’ve had stretches where 8/10 runs are bad. Obviously it’s frustrating, but it always works out that good runs eventually follow so I try not to stress about it too much. I figure you can’t ask your body to be “on” 100% of the time, and all that really matters is that you have a good run on race day.

    • Wow, sounds like you have a pattern going there. Maybe I need to pay attention and see if my bad runs are on certain days or not. But yes! It’s always awesome when you have a good run after some bad ones – feels so effortless and like your flying! Very true – they can’t all be winners, but as long as race day is good, that’s what counts!

  5. Yep, I was just talking about this the other day. I’ve had my share of bad runs. I just have to shake them off. Tomorrow is another day.

  6. Definitely have had this happen before and it feels awesome! The crappy run part isn’t so fun but the comeback sure is. Glad you were able to get back on track so easily and come out on top. You are quite a speedy runner, you may want to change your name to pirate road runner or pirate Tasmanian devil….

    • You are right! I guess the bad ones make us appreciate the good ones even more!
      Why thank you! I’m working on getting faster!!! Hmm, maybe I do need to add ‘run’ or something into the title.

  7. This is excellent advice. You really do just have to try and forget about it and move onto the next one. Running is a funny thing. Some days no matter what you do you just run crappy. Other days you could eat a burger and fries (or taco) and run like the wind. Go figure.

    • Thank you! Very true, just blow it off and move on! Isn’t it weird how running is like that. Haha, yes, tacos before running might have different results than eating them after. But you’re right, you never know!

  8. Sage advice, my friend!

  9. 100% true! After a really bad run, usually comes a really great one. I had the WORST long run two weeks ago and was really demoralized. The following week I had the BEST long run. The bad ones make you appreciate the good ones even more!

    • Isn’t it weird how it works that way. You just never know! It’s hard not to be too hard on yourself – like struggling in a short little run when we just dominated the Dopey!
      You’re right, it does make you appreciate them!!!

  10. Scott, I have this all the time. I have really been working on letting bad runs go and focusing on the next run. Getting better but it’s tough when you have a string of bad runs.

    • Yeah, it can get frustrating, but you just gotta be proud that you got the tough ones done! Then yes, move on to the next!

  11. Oh I’ve totally cried after a bad run. Training for my last (first) marathon, I had an awful 12 miler and my husband heard me wail about it for thirty minutes lol! You’re right though, that we need to let ’em go. Every run is different 🙂

    • Oh no, I’m sorry! Ha, and I’m also sorry, but I had to laugh – poor guy!!! 😉 You’re right, each one is unique!

  12. Agreed and you better believe it! My 15 miler during my marathon training was the worst piece of crap that ever happened. I felt SO down on myself after. But then I got a couple solid runs under my belt that same week and felt a lot better. Then I had a crappy 12 miler at the end, but I just remembered the lessons I had learned after doing the 15 and didn’t have so much of a pity party that time. 🙂

    • Oh yes, I remember that! Haha, that’s when you were like crying on the street, right? That’s great that you were able to turn it around! And it’s great that you learned a lesson and applied it later on! As we keep running, we keep getting smarter!

  13. TartanJogger

    Amen! But each time, we fall for the ‘oh, hell, I’m crap’ trap……

  14. That happens to me all the time! I’m not a fast runner to begin with, so when my body decides to be a super slug, I get all bummed. The good runs always come back around, but it’s obviously frustrating!

    P.S. I lost that youtube video you sent me. Something about Old Greg or something like that.

    • You’re much faster than you give yourself credit for! Yes, it is frustrating, but we must remember that it will be better!

      Oh no – yes – go search for Old Gregg. It’s about 10 mins – he’s part man part fish part woman. He likes to drink Baileys. He’s Old Gregg!!!!

  15. I think every runner knows about the inexplicably bad run. I usually just try and forget about them ASAP and move on the next run. No point focusing on the negatives. And I agree with you – in my experience they are usually quickly followed by awesome ones.

    • Yeah, it’s just so random. Haha. But yes, we need to file it away and move on! I agree, we should focus on the positive – great point! I’m really glad I got two good runs after the two bad ones!!!

  16. Pingback: 3 Day Weekend of Runs, Monogramed Flip Flops, & Bringin Aloha Back! | Piratebobcat

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