So the last two times I've tried to run have been pretty bad - and it doesn't end when the run ends. When I wasn't able to finish the scheduled run the last couple times the disappointment seemed to follow me throughout the day putting me in a funk that would affect my work and my mood when I got home.
Today was scheduled to be my third time doing this same run (that I have not yet been able to complete in it's entirety). The last two attempts have ended in crazy panting, legs that feel like lead, and side stitches. I wasn't sure if I should just chalk this up to my time of the month but everything I've read makes me think I'm just trying to go faster than I'm really able.
Today I decided to try a slower pace. I still kept my warm-up and cool down at 3.5mph. But instead of running at a 10 minute mile pace I decreased it to a 10:54 minute mile. The walking parts in between the jogs I decided to bump down to 3.2mph (instead of keeping it at 3.5 like my warm-up/cool down). What a difference! There was no heavy panting, and while the last 20 seconds of the last jog really started to burn my legs, they certainly weren't lead. And best of all - I didn't feel the need to collapse in the locker room afterwards for 5-10 minutes before finding the energy to take a shower. Amazing!
I have to say at first I felt really guilty about slowing my pace. This is not what I wanted for myself when I started. I really wanted to keep it at a 10 minute mile, so when I finally transitioned to outside I wouldn't be upset when I would possibly go down to a 12 minute mile (it just looks so much harder outside - nothing to pull your feet under you and having to propel yourself forwards against wind certainly seems to slow things down in my mind). But what's the point of trying to push myself to do something I'm just not ready for? All I was doing was failing and than feeling miserable.
I think what I'm going to do now is stick with the slower paces. Once I start working up to where I can go a half hour jogging without taking walk breaks then I will focus on increasing my speed. I just need to remind myself that it is ok to take the time to reassess every few weeks and adjust accordingly.
I've already got my positive feeling back which is so much more motivating. This Sunday I'm increasing my jogging intervals from 3 minutes to 5 minutes with shorter breaks in between. Exciting!