Friday, August 31, 2012

Halfsies, part 4: Keeping Your hand Foot In

One of the best pieces of advice I've gleaned from Teh Interwebz when it comes to running is: do it. Or, in the famous words of Nike, "Just Do It." There are days where I feel lazy and tired and unmotivated. Days where I'd rather have another ice cream cone (...wait, those are most days!). Days where only sheer force of will stops me whining like a petulant 3-year-old, "But I don't want to!" when The Husband asks if I'm going out to the gym. Confession? Those days happen far more often than you might think.

via, Motivate Yourself, Tumblr

But, seeing as how yesterday was one of those days, I thought to myself:
-Meh. Self; just do it. Make it a short run and then you can be lazy and have pasta and an ice cream cone.
As this was a pretty one-sided conversation, I don't think I'll frame a reply to myself from myself, but just leave it at this: I did get off my butt and go for a run. As I promised myself, it was short: just 2 miles down to a stretch of the canal and back. As I had also promised myself, I didn't stop to walk once. It's all about compromises.

I sort of wish that there was some way to break this one down into micro-managed steps that feel really easy to tackle one at a time. But there isn't: you just drag your fat booty off the couch, put on your lycra-spandex, lace up your trainers, and start pounding a bit of pavement.

Maybe, like me, you find it worthwhile to play these sorts of transparent mind games with yourself. Mentally (because aloud would make me look crazy) I was telling myself on my run yesterday:
- This should be super easy because it's basically just a warm up and a cool down. One mile to warm up and one to cool down. That's manageable.

And, honestly, telling myself that a few times did help make the whole thing feel less onerous, even though I didn't really want to be out on a run in the first place. The other thing that helped? Ignoring myself after a while and just enjoying my tunes. Sometimes, if you can get properly stuck in with something, the time flies by and you stop talking yourself out of it, or blowing things way out of proportion. And, as evidenced by the fact that the Husband has graciously listened to Stephen Fry reading all seven Harry Potter books night after night when we go to sleep, I'm the sort of person who needs a bit of help to get out of my own head and switch off, so music on a run is a really good thing.

How many times can you hear about the Hungarian Horntail before you lose your mind?
via, HPwiki
One of the places I have to credit for this advice is the blog community, Another Mother Runner. In their 5K training plan, they have this to say:
My biggest priority for beginning runners–yes, I get to have a priority for you–is to embrace the running lifestyle. I want you to be a lifelong runner, to want and need to run. So you have to make it a habit. For the first few weeks, make your priority simply to get out the door. Whether you go 1/2 a mile or 3; walk most of it or none of it; come home feeling elated or dejected, just go. Just like anything else worth doing, you have to practice moving when you’d rather stay prone in bed or on the couch. Eventually, it’ll just become part of your routine and your body will expect it.
And really, I think you can't say fairer than that. You're not competing against anyone but yourself when you start setting a goal to be a runner, so make it a fair race. Now: time to end with a (just marginally) cheesy .jpg!

via, Another Mother Runner

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