Last week I started running again.
After my short-lived running career back in March of this year, running fell by the wayside. But sometimes running away from something always manages to bite you in the a** until you deal with it once and for all. And I must admit that in the past few months, there have been one too many signs signaling me that this was the right time to start again and this is what I needed to do. For years, I wanted to run a 5k and when I suddenly got a text last week from a lovely friend asking me to join her in the Rock n’ Roll Run on September 23rd; I “5-second-ruled-it” and said, without hesitation, YESSS! That’s not true, I hesitated for a split second but answered YES anyways 😀
I knew I was starting and I would need to train if I wanted to run a 5K without injury (physically and ego-wise; nothing worse than a bruised ego :P). I felt ready. What I wasn’t ready for was all the mean girl talk that occurred once I actually got started!
ME (Day 1): Ok, let’s do this!
After one minute… this is cool, I love being outside! It feels good to start again. The fresh air, morning breeze, …
Three minutes later… Ok, why am I tired? I need to walk. My legs are feeling heavy. I workout almost everyday why do I suck at this? I was never good at running, what makes me think I will be good now. In high school I came last for the 1.5km, that was so embarrassing! I don’t know if I can do this. Ok, shush, let’s start running again…
After 5 minutes: Man, running is hard! I hope I don’t hurt myself. What if I have to walk to whole way? Why am I so slow? I suck at this. I can’t back out now, I gave my word. People will think I’m a fake, posting all those workout selfies and I can’t even run a 5k. Anyone can run a 5k!… except me.
Minute 8: Ok, I’m resting, I need a time out. Why am I so hard on myself? Stop being hard on yourself. So what if they laugh at me? Oh no, my husband and my kids will be there. They’ll want me to go faster. But I’ll be tired and achy. I don’t want them to see me like that. Arghhhhhhhh!
Minute 10: Ok I’m running a bit more and then I’m done. I have no clue how I’m going to get better. I just don’t see it.
Minute 14: ok. I’m done.
After that, I got back home, and feeling disappointed in my run. Duhhhhhhhh!
But as all experiences are lessons in disguise, I chose to look back at my run that morning. Hey, I figured it would make a great blog post! And also see what I could change for my next practice run.
I write and talk about positive mindset and here I was getting sucked into the same inner mean talk we often give ourselves when we attempt something new. However, once you become mindful of that, you can change it. It probably won’t happen overnight and that mean girl might still be lurking in a dark corner of the coils of that brain of yours and pop out when you least expect her, but you CAN change your thoughts over time.
As I was writing down what I was thinking during my run, I was surprised. It suddenly dawned on me that I would never say those things to someone I cared about who wanted to take up running! …then why do I say them to myself?
Next run, I will focus on the fact that I got the discipline to get out there and run, no matter how slow I go. I showed up! Nothing happens overnight, I will get better, it is inevitable. And if all else fails, well, it takes slow runners to make fast runners look good. So you’re welcome! 😀
As for all of us, next time, you start a new job, sport, hobby, whatever it is… remember that the negative self-talk is probably our egos trying to protect us in a way to make us quit and return to our comfort zone. But it is by moving out of your comfort zone that growth occurs and you get to experience what life is all about.
Be kind to yourself. Be brave. AND shush that inner mean girl with your positive vibes! You’ll always come out a winner, in the end.
How do you deal with negative self-talk?