Making Better Choices, Consistently.

I read an article about the secret to being “great”. Be good, consistently. It really resonated with me as I’ve pushed myself to the point of burnout multiple times in my professional life and it’s hard to come back from it. It’s been easier to not let it happen at all but I still find myself at that point more times than not. This time of year is always hard b/c most of my family has died and while I do have friends that invite me over it just feels like I’m intruding even though I know that’s not the case. I typically choose to be alone and then that leads to the depressive episode. I’m definitely more aware of it this year than I have been in the past so I’m actively doing things that bring me joy instead of disappearing into that depressive episode.

My mental health is much better this year and I think a large part of that is due to my physical health being better. I went for a run this morning per my schedule and I’ve noticed that if I don’t run I feel … off, for lack of a better word. I’m keeping my running volume to a 5 day on, 3 day off cycle for the structured runs I’m doing. The last 2 weeks I’ve thrown in a “free run” on the 2nd day of my 3 day down time. It’s felt good both weeks and I don’t feel like I’m doing too much so I think I’m going to start making it a normal thing. I have to be careful about overtraining and getting injured so before and after each free run I’m going to take a self assessment to make sure everything still feels good.

I’m seeing good results from my training program. I’m using the Maximum Aerobic Function formula (MAF Method) which is subtracting your age from 180 and that gives you your max heart rate for aerobic training. I keep my training within 10 beats of the max. It means I’m running *a lot* slower than I was previously but I’m going into my 4th week and I’m definitely seeing results in my average pace per mile dropping and my heart rate staying within my MAF range. What’s that saying “slow is smooth and smooth is fast”. I’m doing monthly tests and tracking my daily run times along with some other data which has definitely helped me see the progress I’m making.

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January 22, 2022

Gosh, burnout is the worst. I was a teacher, and burned out so hard, and I went into such intense anxiety and depression it was ridiculous. I’m so incredibly sorry to hear about your family that has passed. Definitely I, too, have noticed when I stick to some kind of physical activity schedule it helps so much. I should totally try the MAF method – that might help a lot for me 🙂