Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Internal Struggle

It’s funny to me that other people think of me as a runner.  Because I really don’t like running.

I like being able to clear my head.  My body is grateful for the exercise.  And I feel justified in drinking a beer in celebration or eating an insane amount of food after a long run.

But the actual running…sometimes each step is a pain in the ass.  Sometimes with every step, I question, what the hell am I doing?  Why did I choose this?

Today I got up at 5:15 to run 5k.  I did not want to run.  I wanted to sit on the couch and have my coffee alone time.

Instead, I got dressed in the clothes I laid out the night before and was out the door by 6. 

I first saw people on the paved trail a quarter mile in.  I happened to know them and gave them a friendly hello.  I don’t like to see people that I know when I exercise because then I have to put on this show that, Oh, yes, I am running.  This is so easy-I’m in such good shape.  Even with complete strangers, I pretend not to be panting and wheezing.  I have no idea what that’s about.

I noticed quite a few people on the trail, all wanting to beat the heat of the day, I’m sure.  So there was a lot of faking it.

When I hit my last mile, I felt a pain in my foot.  For me, running is only about 10% physical and 90% mental.  I say that because I know that my body can run these distances, but my mind likes to point out every opportunity to stop.  So this pain, it was simply a pain, but my mind had me convinced that I was injured and should stop running immediately to prevent further injury.  I also had a side cramp.  My mind wanted me to know how good it would feel to stop and walk for a bit.

I constantly have this internal struggle where I go back and forth.  One part of me wants to give up, the other is reminding me how long it will take to get home if I stop running or how I will be stranded in the middle of the park.

Honestly, I have no idea how I can run 12 miles because I was running one-fourth of that distance today, and I was ready to give up. 

But the amazing thing is that my legs kept moving.

And my body was happy to have the exercise.  And my stomach was happy to eat that Snickers tonight after the girls went to bed.  They caught me, of course.


  1. Runner sister--this morning I was overthinking my training run. I finally decided that it wasn't worth overthinking and changed the plan. What happened was amazing, without the stress I was actually able to do the workout originally planned and then some. Sometimes it's hard to just get out the door, but the benefits are so worth it.
    Try to enjoy the run as much as you can as you have a gift. A gift to run. There are several people in this world without the gift. Use it.
    It helps to remember those people when you are out there breathing hard. Some people will never have that gift.
    Enjoy the heavy means you are alive!!

    1. Yes, yes, I know all of this. Still it doesn't make those steps any easier at times. :)

  2. Funny how you came across my blog and I hop on over here to find that you are a 'runner'. My husband runs and he used to try to get me to run. I tried but I hate it! (it is mental I know) It's strange though how when I see people run or I hear about a new couch to 5k program or read your story here, it makes me want to try again but then I go out and do it and I hate it. (it could also be that I feel like all my husband does is run and talk about running and my house is over run with running shoes and I don't want to give into all that lol. Silly I guess…
    Any suggestions on making my body do what my brain gets excited about on occasion? lol

    1. Haha, I wish I knew the answer to your question! For me, running is about getting that mental release from work. As a social worker, I'm sure that you understand that. So for me, my motivation is self-care. I still don't "like" it. Kind of like eating salads. :)


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