My enthusiasm hasn't worn off yet, but it is frightening how quickly I can lapse. After the last 2 weeks holiday, where I was just too lazy to run, I could very easily have fallen off the wagon. But reading about all your adventures on here fired me up again and I'm back to running every other day. I made good progress over the first few months, but the really hot weather from mid-July onwards thwarted some of my weekend runs and my mileage started to drop over the last couple of months. August also saw me getting slower, which is a pain, but I'm hoping cooler weather will help me improve again.
Lessons learned: it's hard after Laura because you have to make your own structure. Mixing it up is good (long runs, short and fast runs, non-stop runs, runs with walking breaks etc.).
There is no rhyme or reason as to why some runs are good and some bad. I had a really good 2 weeks in July (fairy dust on my new shoes), running PBs just about every time and then it was suddenly back to my old plodding self. Very strange!
Sometimes it is just good to run with no pressure. No music, no runkeeper, no expectations. Sometimes it is good to push yourself and try and go faster. Always you feel good after a run, even if it didn't go as planned.
I will always have to be vigilant. The couch (or my bed) still calls to me regularly and I don't want to run. I always find it difficult to get back into running after a break and in the past (about 14 years ago) a bout of flu or stress at work have led me to stop completely. Mind you I was never as consistent as I am now, so maybe there's hope.
Running is worth it, it makes you happy, it redistributes your weight (although I haven't lost anything many people say I look thinner). It makes you fitter, it makes you feel younger. I am a morning runner and running gives me energy for the whole day.
So to all you runners on the programme, just starting or close to graduation: graduation is just the beginning. It gives you a real high but the trick is to carry on to reap all the advantages.