Tag Archives: mental game

running can’t fix everything

10 Jun

You know how people say/imply running can cure for all that ails you?  Well, I’m here to say, this isn’t true…

my feelings tasted like peanut butter m & m's

my feelings tasted like peanut butter m & m’s

Let me back up.  Yesterday was a crummy day.  A friend of mine hurt my feelings on Monday and in my true over-analyzing fashion, I couldn’t let it go.  It kept going through my mind, over and over.  In reality, the hurt-feelings aspect has been going on for a while now but it got to a breaking point on Monday.  I couldn’t do much about it that day so yesterday became the day of “the festering wound”.  Gross image, eh?

I won’t even insert a picture of what I was able to find on the internet.

I thought I would try to go for a run to make myself feel better – the magic of running, right?  It will fix everything!  Well, it didn’t.  Turns out trying to run while you are crying really interrupts your breathing and running.  Finally, I sat down under a tree and just bawled my eyes out.  I got up to finish my run but it was as lackluster as it was before the big crying session.

You know what I realized during this run?  Well, two things actually:

1.  My mental game is WAY off.  All I could think about was how horrible I felt emotionally and my running was suffering for it.  I had to walk bigger chunks, I was hot, I wanted to quit.  The fact I made it the whole loop is a miracle in itself and will get stored in my “if you can run through that, you can run through this” memory/strength bank.  I recently read an article about mental toughness and I thought about it again last night – here it is:

2.  Sometimes running can’t fix problems that sit in our souls.  They can act as a band-aid and I will admit the mini-burst of endorphins got me through the rest of the evening without feeling too sorry for myself.  But life is tricky and depending on anything too much just sets me up for disappointment.  Truthfully, had I gone out and had the best run I’ve had in months, I still don’t think it could have rescued me from the blues (although it would have helped a bit more!).  And there was no way that a great run could’ve happened – see number one.

I’m not sure if I am glad I went out there and ran last night but I guess it gave me a new place (aside from my couch) to expel some of my emotions. Probably getting outside and some fresh air was a positive.  And it really drove home how my negativity toward myself and my running abilities needs to be adjusted. Stat.

Ahhh… sorry for the pity party.  Things will get better…

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there’s a marathon afoot

4 May

There is a marathon happening outside my front door this morning.

I am wildly jealous of the runners!

Meanwhile, I am working.  Not my first choice.  Today is the Kalamazoo full, Borgess 1/2 and this year there are both  10k and 5k options as well.  It’s fantastic!  I really wanted to at least do the 10k or 1/2 but work commitments trumped.

Did I mention I was at work?

Alright, I need to breathe out the bitterness… Also happening this weekend is the Flying Pig Marathon.  I can’t even tell you how desperate I am to run this.  I collected pigs as a kid and these medals have flying pigs right on them!  I love the fun atmosphere and following them on facebook makes me want to run it even more (seriously, check out their website).  There is also a new run they created, the Queen Bee 1/2, which is in the fall.  Again, adorable and fun.

Now that I’ve lamented about the races I’m not running, I should probably make sure I’m ready for the ones I AM running.  Yesterday I set out for some miles and accomplished 5.  It’s funny because I kept wanting to stop.  “I’m tired.”  “My legs can’t go any further.”  “Why did I sign up for this again?!”

During this detrimental inner monologue I told myself that my brain was tired, not my legs.  Guess what?  This was true.  I could and did keep running.  I also asked myself, “do you want this race?”  I decided I did indeed want to run and finish my upcoming 25k; that I did indeed, want to keep running.  While I didn’t suddenly get a surge of power, I pep talked my brain and legs into running further.  Also, I came up with my mantra for the race:  “I’ll cross this *%$#$ finish line”.  Sorry for the profanity but I am going to need the aggression to boot scoot my booty along next weekend.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, my mental game sucks.  So, I reinstated my visualizing yesterday.  I can’t begin to express how helpful this technique is and sometimes I completely forget about it.  I imagine what it’s like to cross the finish line and the euphoria that always follows.  I also picture what the middle of the race will be like – when I want to curl up on the roadside and rock in the fetal position until someone takes pity on me quit.  While prepping myself to feel awful may not be a typical motivational practice, I need to arm myself with the weapons to defeat the negativity.  The only way I know how to do this presently is to figure out ways to encourage my feets to keep doing their thing, no matter what the rest of me is screaming.

I kind of want to make this a shirt…

I’ve got 10 miles on the docket today.  I bandaged up my feet yesterday in hopes that it would stop my Hokas from blistering my feet.  No such luck.  I was kind of surprised actually – I done bandaged them good.  What this does mean though is that I am going to need to wear my NEW shoes for the 25k.  Yet another reason my blog is called “Recipe for Disaster”… I’m going to take the newbies out tonight and the rest of the week to make sure my feet don’t catch on fire but I certainly have my concerns.  I was going to type, “it is what it is” but this doesn’t sufficiently convey my apprehension!

this does a better job…

It’s a BEAUTIFUL Sunday here.  I hope you all are having a wonderful day.  Good luck to everyone running and racing today!

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