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The Streak

ForrestRunning“I’m pretty tired…I think I’ll go home now.”

– Forrest Gump when he stopped running after 3 years, 2 months, 14 days, and 16 hours.

One hundred thirty-four.

That’s the number of days between January 15th and May 27th, including the start and finish dates.  During that stretch, I ran at least one mile on each one of those days. Smart? Maybe not. OK, definitely not.

That’s why last week, I stopped.

The author and his favorite shirt.

The author and his favorite shirt.

Despite what the neighbors may think, clearly, I am not Forrest Gump with my paltry 134-day streak. I was pretty tired, though. Besides, I was way ahead of schedule for the miles needed to run 2020 miles in 2020 (my big running goal for the year). I could afford the break. My rest only lasted two days (I was feeling much better), and now I have a new streak of six days at the time I publish this.

However, going forward, extended running streaks are not in the plan. I’m going back to focusing on quality and not quantity. My coach and I have regrouped with some new goals for 2020.

I still have the 2020 in 2020 goal, but the renewed focus will incorporate more than just five mile steady slogs around the neighborhood. It’s back to the drawing board with strength training and more variety on the run workouts. (Editor’s note: “The Streak” was totally my doing, as Coach and I did not have structured workouts during this time. He didn’t need the added distraction of old Dad’s run pursuits as he finished up college this semester. He did have time, though, to give me grief about the streak several times over the past 5 months.)

My alter ego, slacker writing guy, also recently decided it was time to shake things up. As you know, my writing has been the opposite of my running recently with no significant efforts that would remotely resemble a positive streak. Well, that is changing as well.

When this is published, I’ll have a 10-day writing streak in progress – legit butt in chair (or feet on the floor at the standing desk) and fingers on the keyboard. Most of it fiction, too. Very bad first draft fiction, but that’s what rewrites are for. Perhaps that doesn’t sound like much, but it is a solid restart.

Also, as my running workouts needed a fresh reboot, I’ve established new writing plans. There is going to be strength training (studying the craft), short writing sprints, and race days (blog posting), with the ultimate finish line being another marathon writing assignment completed (fiction book two). Who knew that writing was so much like running? Or is it just me?

Go

Is there a streak you need to start? Stop waiting and start streaking. Here’s the basic how-to for you:

  1. Write down the goal. Tip: put it on the mirror in your bathroom.
  2. Schedule the time. Tip: preferably first thing in the morning.
  3. Track your progress. Tip: you don’t need a fancy app (but that might help). A pen and notepad will do just fine.
  4. Optional but highly recommend: find an accountability partner. This can be a coach or a friend. I’ll volunteer if you need someone.

Thanks for reading,

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PS. You readers (is it plural?) are my accountability partners for writing. I’ll be reporting the writing numbers and progress toward book two in this PS section from here on out.

Current writing streak: 10 days!

Fiction words for the past week: 4100! All on Out of Tune, the working title for my second book.

PPS. If you are interested in starting a fitness program or improving in running or triathlon, I know a guy. He has a freshly printed degree in this stuff and would love to add a few new students.

 

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