When it comes to running, the years of the COVID-19 pandemic were actually pretty good for me. Not that I enjoyed the lockdowns, and I don’t want to downplay the suffering of so many people and the consequences. But when it comes to the flexibility of work and the rise of remote work, I have to say, all of that had a positive impact on my training. I could run more regularly, be more flexible, and, as a result, more consistent. H owever, what followed in 2023 can only be described as a hangover. Waking up from the era of COVID was painful. I had set some goals for myself — a half marathon to start, a trail marathon, a couple of smaller runs, and aiming to beat my personal best time in Frankfurt. But I didn’t manage to complete a single one of these races. COVID itself, my Achilles tendon, and a fall that strained the tendon in my left arm all put a damper on my plans. While I can slowly start running …
I don’t want to run like this anymore. It’s not doing me any good. More than that: it’s jeopardizing my health. I’m jeopardizing my health. And my joy of running is at risk too. I owe this realization to a gadget, not my own insight. But let’s start from the beginning.
Today, while running, a peculiar thought crossed my mind. Although, at first, it wasn’t really a thought but more of a feeling. The thought came a little later, but it hit me like a ton of bricks: my body no longer feels like an athlete’s body.
It’s been a strange irony that I, lying in my bed, should stumble upon a book that deals so intimately with the very thing that had brought me low. Covid had robbed me of my strength and left me short of breath, and yet it was in the midst of this struggle that I found distraction and, yes, a tune up.
In the world of running, trends come and go, but some have the power to shape the future of the sport. From the growing focus on recovery and self-care to the controversial debate around trail running and mega events, there is no shortage of topics to explore. In this interview with ChatGPT*, a cutting-edge AI language model, we delve into the latest trends and hot-button issues in running, and discuss the potential impact of technology on performance optimization. But beyond the data and analytics, we also touch on a more fundamental question: what does it mean to find joy in running, and how can we strike a balance between the pursuit of excellence and the intrinsic value of the sport? Join us on this thought-provoking journey into the heart of running, and discover what the future might hold for this enduring passion.