Tuesday Track is back on track—Dornblaser Track that is—as of February 26. I took this as my cue to start getting my training back on track too. While the track workout coached by Olympian Courtney Babock was hard and it made me realize how out of shape I’ve become this winter, I was amazed at how good I felt the next day. I’m starting to crave the feeling of exercise again and I’m remembering how important getting my heart rate up is for my physical and mental health.
My mood is better when I exercise, and I’ve noticed the same is true for my 7-year-old son. We don’t have video games at our house, but if he plays them at a friend’s house or watches a movie he becomes a whiny little stinker. On the other hand, if he gets off the school bus and goes directly to his trampoline or bicycle and gets exercise for at least a half hour, he becomes the most delightful human being I’ve ever met.
Sometimes on winter weekends when we decide not to go skiing and we’ve been cooped up in the house for too long and I’m starting to go stir crazy, I make him get on his bike so I can go for a short run. He complains and says he doesn’t want to go, but when I finally get him out the door and down the trail, he always tells me he’s having fun and he’s happy that we got some exercise.
It’s easy to forget how important physical activity is when you haven’t been doing it regularly for a month or two. I get stuck in a rut every winter when it gets colder and darker. Why don’t I make it our routine? I have good intentions every year, but I’m always inconsistent with my training in December, January and February. I imagine it has something to with the dark, the cold and not setting a goal.
March is the perfect time to start setting new goals. Consider signing up for a Missoula Marathon or Half Marathon training class. Run Wild Missoula has classes for runners, walkers or people who want to use the run-walk-run method. We have something for beginners and advanced runners and walkers and everything in between. Do something good for YOU like I did when I showed up for Tuesday Track last week. You’ll feel better about yourself; I know I do.
I haven’t signed up for any events yet, but I have my sights set on the Pengelly Double Dip and 11 Miles to Paradise. My son is gearing up for running club at Paxson Elementary to train for the Riverbank Run. What are your running or walking goals and what keeps you motivated?