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.
Source: aliruns.com via Ariel on Pinterest
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.
Source: tonpinterest.wordpress.com via Wendy on Pinterest
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?
I also know that once I hit a certain mileage I will usually press on. The first step out the door (or onto the track) is the hardest, and when the weather turned colder it became even more mentally challenging for me. Some days it really is all about using your brain to push your body.
Back when I was a “runner,” I was always good after the first mile. And then I felt like I could go forever. It was just that FIRST mile that was so hard.
I use the phrase “mind over matter” all the time when I teach- usually when I give the class a challenge that we’re about to push through for more than a few second. I probably OVERUSE that phrase actually (and I say A LOT of cliche and cheesy things. i can’t help it!)
Such a great post! My favorite running mantra for races is: In the first half of the race, don’t be an idiot. In the second half of the race, don’t be a wimp! It really helps me :).
My mantras are “You can slow down, but you can’t stop!” and “Think the best, be the best.” I also really like thinking about crossing the finish line. That is a huge motivator. Congrats on your longest run ever! I loved training for my first half – I felt like such a beast!
Ashley @ The Preppy Runner
PS: You should link up with me next Monday for Marathon Mondays! I would love for others to hear about your half-marathon journey!
My mantra is “I AM STRONG!” I have to chant it repeatedly on my long runs too. When is your 1/2 marathon? I am training for one in later April and am about at the mileage you are. Good job getting the long run in!
During my first half marathon my “mantra” if you will was actually a quote from Harry Potter. “It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”
Since then I’ve just shortened it to “Choices” but everything is a choice. We make the choice to run or walk. We make the choice to keep going or not. We make the choice to push or slack off.
I love mantras when I need a boost during my workout. One I always say to myself is stay strong, finish strong. It makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something at the end of my workout.
Mind mover matter totally helps!! It’s hard getting out the door but I remind myself of how I will feel after! Great job on your run!! I’m sure you were feeling the high all day!