When I set out for my long run Saturday morning, I was sure I wouldn’t finish. It was 6 miles, which I’ve done before, but for whatever reason, I was acting like it was 16. My mind wasn’t in it, my body was still waking up and I just wasn’t sure I had it in me.
Most runs take about a mile for me to get into a groove, to find my breath, to find my rhythm, to really get comfortable. I told myself I couldn’t quit until I hit at least 1 mile; I had to give myself time to find my place. At mile 1, I felt good and kept pushing on. I made a turn from my usual route knowing I needed to hit 6 miles and this might help me get there.
When I reached the end of that street, I looped back and continued onto my usual route. I was falling out of it again so I told myself “mind over matter” and kept going.
I was following another runner for about a mile or so, she was a good 1/4 mile in front of me and kept giving me something to run towards. I didn’t want to increase the distance between the two of us. She made a turn and I kept going straight and the wind was picking up, pushing against me but I kept going. “Mind over matter” I kept telling myself.
At mile 3 I took some fuel. It may seem like a short distance to refuel, but I need to start practicing with fueling and figuring out what gives me energy but doesn’t upset my stomach. I took 2 ProBar Bolt chews as I kept running. It was at this point that I knew I was going to finish my long run. I was starting to feel good, my pace was picking up and I kept telling myself “mind over matter” whenever I found myself slipping.
You see this is going to be my first 1/2 marathon and while I’ve successfully completed the first 1/2 of my training plan, this is when things really start to pick up. There are no runs under 4 1/2 miles; there are no long run mileage repeats; the distance just gets longer. I spent Friday night updating my calendar with my work schedule and how I was going to fit my workouts around the longer and weirder hours I’ve been getting, and I think I psyched myself out while doing it last night. Scheduling a 7 mile run next Saturday before noon, a 4 1/2 mile run after a 9 hour shift on Monday, and a 5 mile run and strength session before a long day on Wednesday, seemed overwhelming. Sure it is, but I can do it. Mind over matter.
Whether it’s your long run, a project at work, a tough test in school, getting a new job – just think, “mind over matter” or your favorite mantra. It helps, I promise.
I was turning the corner to my street, my Nike+ GPS app just informed me that I was almost at my goal when a huge gust of wind came at me and I felt like I was running into a wall. I let out a “ahhh” and then “mind over matter” and pushed it until I turned into my driveway. 6 miles done. Mind over matter.
Do you use mantras to get through tough workouts or situations?
What’s one of your favorite mantras?