Posted by: Karen | March 16, 2008

When Did It Become Easy?

An emerging runner asked me this week “When does it become easy?”

I’ve been rummaging through my memories of my early running years, trying to remember when some runs, in between the hard ones, felt “easy”. I do experience easy runs now, often in fact, but I wonder if my definition of easy has changed since I began. Finding the answer to this question is tougher than I thought.

  • What does easy running mean to you?
  • Has it ever been so?
  • What is an easy run for you?
  • When did it happen for you, how, and why?
  • Is easy running a good thing?
  • If not, do you ever hope to experience an easy run?

I think I may have the beginnings of a meme, here. Feel free to answer these questions on your own blog, tag three others and link back if you like.

If you don’t have your own blog, I’d still love to see your answers in the comments. In the meantime, I’ll work on my answers, too.



  1. Hi Karen, My first big goal was to run 5 minutes straight, and then to run 30 minutes in 15 minute segments, and then to finally run 30 minutes straight. This all happened at a gym on a treadmill, and when I made that 30 minute goal something just felt easier. I think the anxiety about being overweight and over-exerting myself was removed. I didn’t have to ponder whether the 15-year-old at the smoothie counter knew CPR and how far away were those zapping paddles? Most of my runs ever since have been “easy” runs, which to me means I will feel fine the next day, I can run comfortably, and when I’m done 45 minutes or an hour or whatever I still feel like I could do it all again. By comparison “hard” runs are tempo runs or long runs or anything where I try to meet or beat a previous time on a set course.

  2. Is there such thing as an easy run? I guess there is to those 40 lb runners! Hahah. I’m just kidding, I know with training it will get easier and even though i finished 18th today it seemed tough for me.
    Anywyay i posted to my blog like u wanted. Glen getting his golf clubs ready?

  3. Yeah, easy can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people. more experienced runners can call one run easy, while beginners will find that same run extremely hard. I think once you really get into running, you will know the difference between an easy run and a hard run.

  4. Great questions! I don’t know that it ever feels easy easy, but some days it just feels wonderful. Either i’m just in love with feeling my legs move that day, or the sun shining on me or just knowing I’m doing something great for myself. Now to be honest I’m pretty sure there were a couple years of this isn’t so fun, to ever get to a run like that.

  5. Easy? Uhhhhh…. never.

    It does not feel difficult to continuously jog slowly without walking breaks now, however. I was completely unable to do that at times in the past.

    But if I’m working at my maximum in a race…. it doesn’t ever get easier, you just get faster.

  6. What also got easier (that I never expected that it would) was getting out the door and running. There were times I had a huge mental battle before every workout – should I or shouldn’t I?

    Now I’m an athlete. Running is just part of what I do.

  7. * Has it ever been so?
    * What is an easy run for you?
    -one that is over (am I being too grumpy?)
    * When did it happen for you, how, and why?
    -usually around the 6 mile mark (when I in training )I start to think…dude! I love to run this is great….about 6.5 I start to think…I’m done.
    * Is easy running a good thing?
    -I have no idea…except a good run makes me want to get out there the next run
    * If not, do you ever hope to experience an easy run?
    -yes. I would love to be a gazelle…maybe in another life?

  8. When does running feel easy? Good question! After plenty of easy running before my marathon in January I’ve gone back to having a lot of hard runs since then. I’m not sure what causes the feeling of an easy run – something inside finally clicks and you enjoy being outside and you feel like you could go forever. Or you look down at your watch and you can’t believe how fast you ran because you didn’t feel it. I don’t think anyone can ever say concrete – “it gets easier after x months.” It is different for every person, but one day there will be a run when it will finally come together. When that happens you’ll keep striving to have that feeling on every run. It sucks you in to keep you coming back for more!

    Karen, thanks so much for all of your enthusiastic cheering on Sunday! I can’t tell you how much I appreciated it. Honestly, all the volunteers that day were AMAZING especially considering how gross it was outside, and all the cheeriness put a smile on my face for most of the race.

  9. […] those bloggers know they have been tagged -um no… ******and for my next trick***** Karen at All Downhill started this pseudo Meme…and I jumped on […]

  10. […] poses the question When did it become easy? posted at All Downhill From Here. Finding the answer to this question from an emerging runner is […]


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