We've been experiencing artic temperatures here (39 degrees when I wake up!), and I have really slacked on my running. But my 5k arrived last Saturday and even though I wanted to hide in my bed and pull the covers over my head, I laced up and headed out.
I arrived at the park and realized that I forgot my fitbit, my flipbelt and my earbuds so that I could listen to Jeff Galloway coach me through my race. Not a good start.
The race started and without my app in my ears, I didn't follow my normal Galloway method of a 3 minute warm up. Big mistake, because I felt my legs start getting tired early in the run. Galloway says the first mile is the most important time to do measured walk/run intervals, and after this experience, I believe him.
About a mile into the race, I told my friends to go on ahead of me (they hadn't stopped training like this dummy so I didn't want to affect their times). As I jogged along on my own, I looked up and saw a heavy girl walking back towards the start line. What struck me was the angry, defeated look on her face. I was so bummed for her, because it wasn't the physical run that was stopping her, (she could have very easily walked the rest of the race) it was the voice in her head that was telling her she couldn't finish.
So I kept plugging along, even though I was beating myself up in my head for slacking on my training. I kept thinking about how I could be running faster, how my legs shouldn't feel so heavy, about how far ahead of me my friends were.....you name it, if it would make me feel worse, it was going through my head.
When I came to the final bridge to run over, I was feeling pretty bad about myself. Then I looked up, and my friend's husband and his parents were standing halfway on the bridge cheering for me. And her husband came and ran that final bit with me, pushing me to the end. And finally, my inner voice shut up. Because I realized that even if I wasn't the fastest, even if I struggled the whole way, I finished. I had some great friends that were there cheering me on, giving me their support. I didn't turn around and allow my negative self voice to win the battle.
So the next day, I was all dressed up, feeling like I looked reasonably cute when I ran up to Safeway for a few things. I was over in the bakery aisle, looking at the bread when a cute guy bumped into me. He smiled and said "excuse me", and I smiled back, opened my mouth to speak when the dairy commercial playing overhead let out a "MOOOOOOO". FML. I just turned and walked away without saying anything.
I couldn't stop laughing as I walked out to the parking lot, and of course shared this with my friends, who were anything but amused. They didn't think I should have automatically compared myself to the cow in the speakers. But that negative voice in your head has been playing a long time, and they know just the words to say to get your attention.
I need to learn how to change the record, but it's definitely something that you have to actively practice, just like running or healthy eating. I hope I'm up to this challenge!!