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Practical, Not Perfection

Updated: Dec 14, 2021

A lot of runners are type A: we like a plan, we like lists, and we like everything being just how we like it (weather, timing, etc.)

While this makes us efficient and able to execute training plans it also gets in our way.

We get hyper focused on ever pace, every run and every stat that we can possibly grasp on to. If we don’t hit it we turn into grumps which can also be equated to a toddler tantrum....I do it, I’m honest!

The most important thing to remember is that most of us aren’t elites (unless one of the pros are reading this then heyyyyyy!!!) We day to day runners have jobs, kids and have to figure out perpetually what’s for dinner every night because who has the time/energy to actually meal plan? All of this adulting really gets in the way of our runs. No matter how hard we plan or move things around something always just get thrown at us and we have to swerve.

Life gets busy and if I am waking up early for a speed session my 4 year old doesn’t care. She doesn’t care that I’m training for a marathon nor can she count to 26 so basically the rules are made up and the points don’t matter.

So I move my workout to accommodate her needs and then run when it’s hotter than I’d like. It’s not the end of the world even though it feels like it sometimes. This brings me to being practical. If I’ve learned anything this marathon cycle is perfection has no place in running—it HAS to be replaced with practicality or you won’t get through it.

As I write this I am heading my own advice. (Shocking I know)

I set my intention today to get my strength training done but one thing after another had to come first. By the time 7pm rolled around I was beyond done—-life and 21 miles over two days caught up with me and I had to ask myself why was I pushing myself to strength train after dinner.

The only reason was to seek that perfection of hitting the plan. I didn’t actually believe that session would serve my training, it was just so I could put a check mark next to todays goal and that isn’t a good enough reason

So instead I snuggled into bed, watched Below Deck and went to be early. Practically the rest/recover was going to do more for me than the planned upper body workout on this given day. Perfection Shelby struggled to deviate from the plan but I know to have longevity and to

not fall into that overtraining mindset you gotta give yourself the grace to let the practical side of our minds reign every once in a while.

Do you struggle with being practical over perfect? Just in your running or in general?

For the record my answer is yes to all of the above but I’m working on it 😅

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