TITLE: Living with Yesterday AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: October 13, 2009 9:31 AM DESC: ----- BODY: After my long run yesterday, I was both sorer and more tired ('tireder'?) than after last Sunday's big week and fast long run. Why? I cut my mileage last week from 48 miles to 38, and my long run from 22 miles to 14. I pushed hard only during Wednesday's track workout. Shouldn't last week have felt easy, and shouldn't I be feeling relatively rested after an easy long run yesterday? No, I shouldn't. The expectation I should is a mental illusion that running long ago taught me was an impostor. It's hard to predict how I will feel on any day, especially during training, but the best predictor isn't what I did this week, but last; not today, but yesterday. Intellectually, this should not surprise us. The whole reason we train today is to be better -- faster, strong, more durable -- tomorrow. My reading of the running literature says that it takes seven to ten days for the body to integrate the effects of a specific workout. It makes sense that the workout can be affecting our body in all sorts of ways during that period. This is good example of how running teaches us a lesson that is true in all parts of life: We are what and who are we are today because of what we did yesterday. This is true of athletic training. It is true of learning and practice more generally. What we practice is what we become. More remarkable than that this true in my running is that I can know and write about habit of mind as an intellectual idea without making an immediate connection to my running. I often find in writing this blog that I come back around on the same ideas, sometimes in a slightly different form and sometimes in much the same form as before. My mind seems to need that repetition before it can internalize these truths as universal. When I say that I am living with yesterday, I am not saying that I can live anywhere but in this moment. That is all I have, really. But it is wise to be mindful that tomorrow will find me a product of what I do today. -----