I’ve been running since 1999. The day I started running I also ran my first 5k. My first thought was “Sure” and then “What’s a 5k?” I did it and here we are 15 years later. There was a time I could squeak out a 8 minute mile but I’ve let my times creep up to slower paces. Why?
I let my head get in the way. I started thinking and becoming concerned about what everyone else was doing or thinking. I started coming up with A LOT of excuses as to why I couldn’t and why I shouldn’t. All I can think is…………………
Who is this mental headcase runner I’ve become?
It was all put to the test this last weekend. I ran 10 miles Saturday……on the treadmill. Why? It was a gorgeous day outside, a little chilly but I was having a serious headcase day. I didn’t want to run on the beaten path. I didn’t want to be seen hobbling along while my peers were zipping by. My pride was hollering and throwing the worst temper tantrum but here’s the deal, if I didn’t run that 10 miles, there was no marathon in January. I had to treat myself like a 8 year old who insisted on having it they’re way while the adult in me knew what needed to be done. Saturday was rough.
If I didn’t run the 10 miles there was no marathon. It was a make it or break it workout for me.
I love running. I really do. I just am my own worse critic. I did the 10 long miles on a treadmill. I don’t know what it was that got me through but I know this, that day and that space was my comfort zone and it got me through it. I did it.
Sunday I did a 3 mile recovery run. Recovery runs are great because typically if your really stiff after a long run, it helps lessen the stiffness. There’s lots of other scientific mubo jumbo that it’s good for but that’s the jest of it. The first mile hurts and is uninspiring but close to the end of mile 2 and into mile 3 it’s like your new again. Typically.
Monday I rested. My hips were tired, fatigued and on the verge of being useless other than holding me up, even that was debatable.
Today, Tuesday, I did a Fartlek workout. It ended up being close to 5 miles. And again, my head was hollering NO but the runner in me knew this was an important workout. Not just physically but mentally. It was another workout to tell myself, “You’ve been running for 15 years you can do this. Stop saying you can’t because you can.” I wanted to stop a thousand times. I wanted to say ” No I’m on the verge of having stomach issues” (that part was true) but if I stopped and continued on with my day, I can’t go back and say I finished. It’s done. I would have known that I LET myself short change my workout. What’s the point?
I am a runner. I may not be fast (although that is a relative term but compared to most of my local peers, I’m not fast) but I can persevere. I’m like the energizer bunny, I can keep going and going. I love all things running but I’ve got to leave the headcase runner at home. I’m better than that. Most people to look at me would not know that I have more than my fair share of 5k, 10ks and half marathon under my belt. I lost track of triathlons. And a 7x marathon finisher. That’s me. That’s who I am. So no more headcase running Brandy. I’m better than that.
Be proud. Be confident. Be strong. Be a runner.
Till next time……….