Today I set out for my fast 6km Thursday run. You remember me whingeing last week about how “fast” and “8km” were mutually incompatible ideas? Well I discussed it with Becky, and she agreed that perhaps we should start the build-up at 6km. So this week, my first official marathon training week, was a fast 6km.
I got up early to beat the temperature plummet, and did my familiar route around town. It’s exactly 6km if I do a little twiddle around the car park of the gym, which is where I start from.
This was exactly the kind of boost my confidence needed. I’ve struggled to keep going and motivating myself for months and months and after the weekend, I was really questioning whether or not I’m a runner. So this run was an excellent run. A much needed fillip.
And then I came home and someone had posted a link to this article about mental training for ultra-runners. And it, too, was exactly what I needed. I love the idea that when it hurts and your heart is thumping against the inside of your chest cage, *that’s* living. It reminds me of an Eels song of which I’m particularly fond!
Apart from this idea of being totally alive, the article suggests that when you’re hit by the overwhelm you pause (mentally, not physically!) and ask “where would I rather be?” If this is so dreadful, what would I rather be doing? If you think about this for a short while, it’s utter genius! Not many of us would rather be sitting on the sofa – we’re not that kind of person; that’s why we do the running thing in the first place. Nor would we want to be at the finish line, having quit the event. No, where we would rather be is at the finish line, with a smile of triumph on our faces (or tears of triumph, in my case), an ache in our legs and a sense of marvel at what our body has just done. Yes. That’s where I want to be. And the only way to get there is to keep going.
Really, it’s a very good article – you should totally go and read it.
So tonight, I feel battle-hardened and ready for anything. A bit like Tank Girl… (I had to get her in there somewhere, right?!)
Remember that you are awesome. You are powerful and you are strong. If you weren’t, you wouldn’t have made it here. Then get back to being present and being aware. You are doing what you love. You are here for a reason. And whatever you came to find can be easily missed.
Through our training we have earned the right to share in some pretty spectacular human experiences.
We have to be so careful not to miss them.