Mind Over Matter (And Not In A Good Way)

The wee hours of the night are not the time to be thinking about your first half-marathon. I was awake between 1am and around 4am overnight last night, and in a desperate bid to get myself back to sleep, I tried meditation (as I frequently do during sleepless hours).

For whatever reason, I could not clear my brain completely but my mind kept going back to a visualization of running. I liked what I was seeing so I just went with it for a while, but eventually my brain turned on me, as it frequently does.

I started thinking about my runs for this week, packing my gear for the week, and then I realized ALL of my running bras (all two of them…*sigh*) and most of my shorts were in the washer, still wet. I should have gone downstairs and swapped the laundry then, but I was afraid that would make it even harder to go back to sleep. So then the negative-thinking cycle kicked in.

I knew I would slack off my workout today. No 4 mile run around Belle Isle today for me. And then I started thinking if I couldn’t even bring myself to run 4 miles on a beautiful October afternoon, how would I drag myself out for a 10 mile run in the pits of February’s chill? And if I couldn’t do that, then there was no reason for me to go through with signing up for the half-marathon I have decided I would like to run in March.

The Instant Classic Train Race covers everything I need. It’s local to me (as in, 10 minutes from home!). It is inexpensive (cheaper than Warrior Dash). It is attached to a good cause (running for the sake of running is great, but it’s even better when you can help benefit a good cause). It is very small, which is important to me since large crowds make me very anxious. And finally, I love it because it is a trail race, not a road race. I like off-road running. A lot.

Those factors all make this race the perfect first half-marathon for me to attempt.

But last night, I became overwhelmed by doubts. I doubt my ability to stay focused enough through the terrible winter months to train like I have to. I doubt my ability to stick to a real training regimen (I am kind of liking this one).

These doubts are continuing to weigh on me this morning. Last week, I was all ready and set to sign up once our paychecks came in, but my doubts now have overwhelmed my enthusiasm, and I think I am going to wait until after the Jingle Bell run before I commit my $35.

And since I spent the month of October successfully focusing on improving or at least paying close attention to what I put in my body, I think I am going to spend the month of November focusing on improving my mind and spirit. It is time to work on stopping the negative cycles I have been letting myself spiral down into.

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