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Good reminder: It does get easier

Since my post a few weeks ago on overcoming inertia, I have been working on getting this big ole chub of a body back into a good running momentum.   In that time, every run has been a challenge.   Nothing feels easy, like it did before the holiday crash, with my running.   Instead of heading out on a run and feeling like the cover model for Runners' World, I feel like a swaddled ogre lumbering down the trail.   I am amazed that my legs can feel this heavy and be attached to my body.   And speed?  The little amount of speed I once had has been replaced by super slowness which just adds insult to injury.  Running has been very tough.

So Monday night, when I hopped on the treadmill for a quick three miles, my head wasn't in the game.  I wasn't looking forward to the run because they haven't been the most enjoyable experience.    I had a constant rambling of thoughts that went something like this....

....surely this will be a better run....its gotta be...I am a runner....this is an easy run...no big deal...slow and easy....slow, ok this is below slow...come on...pick it up...you can go faster...thump, thump, thump....ok...you can't...and what is that pain in my knee...still there...oww...limp, thump, limp, thump...definitely a new one...and the foot..a little tingle...oh, I should just get off..maybe time for a rest period...just give up running...the first mile sucks...I was never built for running anyway...and this treadmill...silent scream...man, I hate treadmills...I wish I could go outside and run...why is it always dark...and cold...why does the first mile have to suck...how many days of winter are left anyway...silent calculation...ugh....70 days left...maybe I should just stop...its not getting any easier...this is horrible...I am a horrible runner...that's it at 10 minutes, I will stop...the kids are hungry anyway...I should be making dinner...and catching up on email...and vaccuuming....and petting the dog....poor guy...the first mile sucks...the treadmill just confuses him...yes, I should stop and play with the kids and pet the dog....that would be a ton more productive than this pace...how slow am I going...you have got to be kidding...is it possible to run this slow...the first mile sucks...and wait, now my other knee hurts....what in the world....this must look ridiculous....I am moving somewhere warm...I am never running on a treadmill again...I am just sure today is the day I am going to fall off this thing...

And on and on it went for 9 minutes and 43 seconds and then....BAM...just like that, I straightened up a bit, it got a little easier, and I found myself running like a normal person.   Even in all that negative head chatter, my body kept moving forward, and it finally slipped back into a very familiar feeling of "good running".   The kind of running that feels natural, a bit easier.   That floaty, happy feeling.   It took 15 days and many tough runs to get my groove back, but I am so happy that I persisted.  The last two miles were great!  And now, I feel that addictive pull of running back again.   Instead of talking myself into it, I feel my running voice begging and pleading to ditch a meeting or get up extra early or stay up a little later.   

Ah...the planets are back in alignment.  Life is good again.

While I wouldn't want to repeat the last 15 days, it was a good reminder to keep on keepin' on.   I can't stop just because it is hard. I need to keep running because it gets easier - sometimes in the blink of an eye and sometimes less miraculously.    Either way - it always gets easier.

I found this post and video on Everyday's Athlete's blog this weekend and it really struck a cord with me.  The ramblings in my head can be a big derailer for me and this clip had about all of them in the minute of so that it played.   In the end, the negative talk you tell yourself really doesn't matter and in fact, will go away, as long as you do the most important thing - just go out there and run.  Even a little.  Just go for a run today!

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Comments

Nancy

Oh sure, she suddenly feels like a star one day before a run with me?? Yikes. I'm pretty sure I'll be the one with the head chatter. Oh well. That's why we have the club. Looking forward to it, even though we are going to have to bundle like polar bears!!

Doug

Runs like those make it seem like Adidas knows what they're talking about with "A run begins the moment you forget that you're running."

Your body "forgot" that it was supposed to struggle, and everything was natural again. What a great run!

I love that ad, too. Tell Tom that the trick to meeting Mr. Consistency is to drop any excuses!

William carter

Hi Amy!

You do it to me every time. I start to read your blog and find myself cracking up laughing. This one made me start giggling because I was picturing you thinking these things and knowing that I am going through some of the same stuff myself. I have a sneaking suspicion that runners are some of the most self deprecating athletes in existence.. and while I am at it don't ever forget for even one second that you are an athlete... who just happens to write really good stuff.
Have fun on your run with Nancy (the non non-runner).

BTW, you gotta love the "FLOATY, HAPPY FEELING"!

suzanne

oh. you have no idea how timely this is for me. i had never seen that ad - may steal it & put on my blog. good stuff! both your post & that clip!! glad you shared!!

Nat

Too funny. I so can relate.

I love that ad, and am so stealing it for the blog. It made me want to run. But today is a cross training day. (I did weights. Ick.)

nic

great video. great post. thanks for the help in geting moving!

Amy

Three cheers to Everyday Athlete for the video clip. I have gone back and watched a few times - it is such a pick me up.

Betsy

Amy Hunold-Van Rundy! Do not be referring to yourself as chubby again, or I will have to drive to Des Moines and beat you up for being mean to my friend Amy.

cyberpenguin

Hahahaha, we've all had running days like these before! The mind is unwilling & won't let up with its barrage of 10 zillion reasons for why it doesn't want to propel the rest of you to run. ;-) But bravo to you for not letting your "inner grumblings" get the best of you. You were able to fight the good fight, past the initial resistance & keep going! Newton sure knew what he was taking about when he posited his 3 Laws of Motion: Objects in motion stay in motion, objects at rest.... LOL. (http://csep10.phys.utk.edu/astr161/lect/history/newton3laws.html)
Those laws apply to heck more than just Physics! ;-)

dscodi

It's like I'm reading something I wrote myself. Glad to know I'm not the only one out there with a head full of negativity and excuses. Your 100% right just keep running. It gets easier and even enjoyable.

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