Run Commuting and the 2012in2012 Challenge

Greetings from beautiful south central Pennsylvania!  As a novice run commuter and a brand new contributor to this blog, allow me to tell you a little bit about how I came around to embrace run commuting:

The decision to start running to work gained traction as a result of the 2012 in 2012 challenge.  The goal is to travel 2,012 human-powered miles during the course of the year.  Dedicated participants are biking, running, paddling, and walking their way through the challenge as we speak.  My goal is to travel the bulk of the miles by foot, as it seemed too easy to click away 2,012 miles by bike, and my main goal for this year is to improve my running performance.

While pondering this challenge during the champagne-soaked revelry of New Year’s Eve, I did some quick math and realized that I need to average about 5.5 miles per day to hit the target.  It just so happens that my office is  2.52 miles from home.  After stumbling upon the fine folks here at The Run Commuter, switching from bike to run commuting seemed a natural fit.  Add a long training run on the weekends, and viola!  2,012 miles.

Admittedly, I am in an enviable situation for run commuting.  In fact, it couldn’t get much better.  The Capital Area Greenbelt is just four blocks from my abode, and I can enjoy the sunrise over the beautiful Susquehanna River with mergansers, great blue herons, red-tail hawks, as well as the cadre of destitute folks napping by the river, all the way to the front door of my building.  I work in a small office with a private bathroom/shower, and I rarely have to wear a suit (but keep one in the closet in case of emergency).  Despite these alluring conveniences, I’ve only flirted with the idea of run commuting on a regular basis.  Sure, I’ve run home from work a few times, but I was always coerced into it by a flat bicycle tire or a sudden downpour during a stroll home.  Starting Monday, February 6th, I will be deliberately transitioning to run commuting as my primary form of transportation.  It’s exciting to be joining  such an elite group of physical commuting prowess.

I am tracking my 2012 in 2012 progress over at runtheburg, and am delighted to share my experiences with run commuting as a contributor to this blog.

By |2018-02-27T15:01:09-04:00February 3rd, 2012|Categories: General|Tags: , , |6 Comments

Small Numbers Really Add Up – Stephanie’s Dec-2011 Run Commuter Stats

December was my first month run commuting and I logged plenty of miles doing it.  Check out this image of my month-long mileage log below.  Add the total 47.81-miles of run commuting to some long weekend runs (not listed, but included a 10K and half-marathon race) and it’s clearly possible to keep up running skills over the winter months.  Look at that Total Calories number – 4,751 calories burned.  Pass the butter, please!  With numbers like these, a runner can enjoy the outdoors while running and the indoor indulgences of tasty food.

If you breakdown the large monthly mileage into the individual runs, the small numbers really accumulate.  The shortest run, 1.62-miles on December-16, helped add to a 4.17-mile day and a 9.08-mile week.  That’s no small task when you think of all the holiday shopping and get-togethers we attend throughout December, a characteristically chaotic month.

To track these numbers, I use the iPhone iMapMyRUN app and that image was lifted from the MapMyRun website.  The app’s GPS locates quickly in the morning, I drop the phone in my pocket, and I’m off running.   On the weekends, I use a Garmin Forerunner 305 to track my running.  TRC’s Josh uses a 305 too; check out his gear post.  The 305 easily tracks heart-rate, pace, splits, grade, mileage, and probably other things I can’t remember right now.  However, it can take 5 or so minutes to locate the GPS satellites.  In the morning, when I have limited time or it’s just too cold, I don’t want to stand outside before a run and wait.  So the app is really my go-to run commuter mileage tracker.  It doesn’t track pace as easily as I would like and doesn’t log heart-rate, but I have found the simplicity of using the app works best for me during my daily grind.  And here’s the outcome:

Here’s to logging even more run commuter miles in January-2012!

Getting Started – Part 1: Mentality

Anyone can run commute.  As long as you set your mind to it, you can do it.

Ok, ok…  Maybe not everyone can do it, but the hardest part of trying anything new is convincing yourself to give it a shot and then doing it.

Disregard the initial, extremist thoughts that may enter your head when you think about run commuting:  Namely, that it means you have to do it every day, only athletes are able to run like that, or you can’t because you need special facilities at your job to do so (shower).

I’ve heard many reasons why people can’t do things – as in, “I could never bike to the grocery store,” or “I could NEVER give up cheese/junk food/TV” and after making a few changes in my life, I realize now how much this annoys me.  But they’ve convinced themselves they couldn’t do whatever it was before they even tried.  It used to be me, too.   (more…)