Ben is far keener on running than I am. I ran a fair amount in grad school. I actually enjoyed running then because one of my friends introduced me to trail running. I loved spending some time away from the concrete and disappearing in to the woody forests and its lush overgrown paths worn down by sneakered feet. I stopped running when I moved away because there weren’t trails for me to run and personally I find the treadmill awfully boring. Running on sidewalks and besides cars and dodging pedestrians didn’t interest me either. I imagine if I truly loved running, I would have continued, but I liked the other aspects (being outside, getting fit) that running gave me and I could get those by other means.
On a lark I started running again the end of 2011. Ben is very supportive as he loves coming out with me on my runs. We run together when I feel like doing a hard run and he wants an easy run. He’s quite good at pacing me and he’s happy to carry water so that I don’t have to. With Ben, I run much harder and longer than I would have otherwise. On Friday and Sunday, we went out for a 7-mile run. Two 7-mile runs in a span of a few days – I wouldn’t have done it without Ben.
But I’m not serious about running. I don’t do speed work. I don’t do long slow runs, or tempo runs, or any of those things. I run whenever and whatever I feel like. And I”m fine with this. My training is a bit lackadaisical. I ran my first half marathon, the Brooklyn Half in May, with six weeks of training (and I barely ran three months prior because of lingering illness). My training consisted of weightlifting 3x/week and one run once a week. My runs were usually short (3-6 miles, with one long run of 9 miles). I finished the BK Half in 2:08 (9:46 pace). I wouldn’t recommend my style of training for everyone (I did go into training with a good overall level of fitness; I wasn’t a couch potato), but it works for me. Maybe one day I will want to train more seriously, but until then I’m having fun dillydallying while running.