Optimize Your Run Performance: Dance on the Edge Safely

Boundaries & Limits.

They have different functions.

Think about your running routine. The training schedule is your boundary. You can push close to it and flirt with those mileage markers without risking total burnout. The electrified third rail, though—that’s your limit. Cross it, and you’re done like game over done.

Boundaries let us innovate and thrive. Your weekly mileage, your tempo runs, your rest days—all these show where the safe zones are. Sure, go ahead, dance on the edge, challenge those boundaries every once in a while. Upper and lower thresholds. Left and right restrictions. That’s why they are there.

But limits? Limits are different. Limits are the endgame, the danger zone, the thing you steer clear of.

Some runners don’t like boundaries or at least forget about them. They dream of a training plan with no pace goals and no recovery days. They want to train for a marathon in six weeks with no training before, run their best time by 45 minutes and beat all their friends. The problem with ignoring boundaries is that limits will sneak up on you. And then, boom, you’re injured, crying the same song as most runners, “well, when you run, you get injured”.

You don’t always have to stay inside the box, but your strides strengthen when you know where the edges are.

This was loosely adapted from Seth Godin’s “Boundaries & Limits” post.

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