Do you ever find yourself in the middle of a run and your mind is wandering off about all the things that you have to get done or want to get completed? I don’t mean right off the bat when you are trying to convince your legs that your mind is full of crap and to keep running. I mean three or four miles in, at the moment when you hit your pace and find yourself wondering what happened to that last mile and what the heck was I thinking about that whole time that had me preoccupied.
I find that days of longer runs often help me push the stress out of my mind. Stop dwelling on what I need to get done and formulate a plan of action to get things finished up or organized. Those are the best days and those are just what exercise is there to do for you. To help you relieve stress, anxiety, clear your mind and become more focused on what you need to get accomplished. Some days yes, it’s just getting that run completed and being able to rest, but most days I find that the more I run or exercise the more productive I am.
Finding a place to run that keeps me from thinking about how much farther I have to go to finish my run also helps. I like to run in populated areas, mostly where there is high traffic and a lot of activity. This keeps me from the constant impending mental breakdown of wanting to stop and walk when those distractions are not present. I love the 10K route that I have run for the past few weeks. It makes me comfortable and safe to know the area, what to expect on weeknights and weekends and what other runners I may pass.
Still my biggest intimidation would be the big jumps in increased miles which is where I am supposed to start in the coming weeks according to my training plan. I think mentally, I was always afraid of the Half Marathon distance. Not because I didn’t think ultimately I could not physically finish it, but that mentally I would always struggle through. Intimidated by potentially being the last runner to cross the finish line. But finding my runner positive thoughts, I know that I am the only person that can move forward, make it a positive race for myself, the huge feeling of accomplishment that will come with it and know that ultimately it is just another run and all that matters is that I am actually there doing it.
So now, with my second month of training coming to a close soon and 2012 also coming to a close (it has been a doozie of a year!), I look to 2013 with big plans and goals.
- Create a more focused running schedule and hold myself accountable each day and week.
- Change my eating habits and make sure I am maintaining a more clean and lean diet so my body cooperates on the weeks that I have more strenuous training schedules. (I have already started by purchasing some 2013 go-to books)
- Reduce self-induced stress of things or tasks that are not in my control. (Learn to just let go)
- Ensure that I have the proper gear and fuel at the ready at all times. (You never know when your schedule will let you to get out and run, so be ready)
- Lastly, stop and enjoy the little victories. (Simply that I am able to run is already an accomplishment, everything else that comes later is just icing on the perpetual cupcake!)
I have some big things on the horizon for myself and gingermantra and I hope that you will all continue to follow me and my journey to be healthier, stronger and unstoppable! Cheers to 2013!