This week of marathon training was a step back, and it came at the perfect time. I was needing a mental and physical boost. Don’t get me wrong, I still busted my tail, just not as much as I have been. Plus, I subbed my 10 mile long run for a 5k. Totally worth it.
•Total miles run so far during training:108.3 (16.3 this week)
•Interval run: 800′s – 6 of them! 800′s are hard.
•Tempo run: 7 miles total, 6 at tempo pace. Tempos are hard, too!
•Long run: 3.1 miles. I was supposed to run 10 miles, but scratched that for 5k race instead. (Race recap here.)
•Most motivational song on my playlist: “Wild Night” by John Mellencamp. The world could use more Mellencamp.
•Emotional state: scared. I’ve got some big mileage on the horizon.
I think I’ve made more trips to the gym this month than ever before. (Well, I spent more time there when I worked there, but you know what I mean.) Normally, I am firmly planted in the let-me-run-outside camp. Outside has mountain views and fresh air and I feel fast. Inside has stinky fellow-gym-goers and the view of the butt of the guy on the elliptical in front of you wearing too-tight spandex shorts (true story).
I have to concede, however, that the gym has its place. Like when you get off work at 6 pm and it’s already completely black outside. That is precisely why I find myself spending so much time at the gym. This girl’s got to run and she’s not about to start running outside in the dark with the bad guys and tripping hazards.
In my month+ of regular gym visits, I’ve come up with some rules (really more like guidelines) for gym etiquette, or gymiquette if you will.
1. Give me my space.
My preference is a two machine radius around me at all times. I know that’s not possible; I just have to suck it up. If it’s slow, though, you don’t have to use the stationary bike right next to mine. Leave that one empty, and go to the next one. Same thing in the locker room. You can see that I’m standing there with no pants on next to locker 45. Don’t waltz over to locker 46.
2. Dress appropriately
I’m totally okay with less-is-more in the clothing department. Most running ensembles are pretty scant as it is. Just keep your essential parts firmly contained. What I don’t understand is guys wearing their combat boots on the machines (I know you wear sneakers to PT!), or girls in a full face of make-up.
3. Hygiene hygiene hygiene!
Wipe down the machine when you are done with it. So simple yet so difficult.
4. Eye Contact
It’s not necessary. When I’m on the treadmill, I’m trying really hard to pretend that no one else is around. It’s a lot more successful when my fellow patrons do the same. Also, if we are acquaintances, it’s ok for you to pretend you don’t see me or don’t know me. It won’t hurt my feelings. I know that my face is really red and my hair is crazy and sweat is dripping down my arms and flinging about. There’s no point in pleasantries.
I don’t think that’s asking too much. I just want the gym to be a pleasant experience for all involved. Okay, so I actually want it to be a pleasant experience for me. While all of my long runs will be taking place outside, my weekday runs still have me relegated to the gym. That’s a lot of gym visits between now and the end of February. If you go to my gym, do me a favor, practice good gymiquette!