The idea of doing the Runner's World Holiday Running Streak intrigued me, a week or so before it would start, but I had one reservation: the holiday part.
Thanksgiving — the kickoff day — posed the biggest challenge, at first. My parents were coming to visit me on Thanksgiving Eve and leaving before I headed to work on the actual holiday at 3 p.m.
Our plans were pretty loosey-goosey, but I figured that getting in a single mile (the bare minimum to keep the streak alive) was completely doable; if it didn't happen before work, it most likely would happen after my 11 p.m. punch-out.
Though that didn't turn out to be necessary on Thanksgiving — we said our farewells at noon, and I headed out in sunshine and 60-degree temps — the mental preparation paid dividends two days later.
A friend I'd made in Rockford was visiting family in Ames over the weekend, so we hung out Saturday before I headed to work at 1 p.m. There wasn't time before work, but there was after — at 11 p.m.
I'd gone running after work plenty of times during the summer and early fall, but never this late, never when it was that cold and never for that short of a distance. The first two factors dragged on my enthusiasm, but the third one pumped it up. Only a mile. Less than 10 minutes. I'd be safe and snug on my couch before I even knew it.
That same guarantee had pushed me out the door Friday, when temperatures were in the 30s or maybe even upper 20s, and when the wind was whipping around the prairie. I ended up knocking out a solid set of intervals rather than the slow mile I'd promised to do at minimum.
So the first three days were the toughest, but the challenge is working exactly as it was intended to. Mac 'n' cheese, eggs Benedict, sweet potato pie, egg nog, adult beverages — I'm downing them all in moderation AND without guilt.