When I originally planned out this 20 days til the marathon blog series, today was supposed to be a continuation of yesterday's blog about cold weather running... but like lots of runs I take I decided to turn in a different direction.
For those who frequent my blog, you know that there are times when I am more transparent than others. Running miles upon miles and spending 1-3 hours all alone can cause you to be really reflective and having a blog gives me an outlet to share my thoughts that I collect along the way. Today's running thoughts were a bit cloudy due to the overwhelming amount of self-doubt that I poured all over myself as I ran.
Not sure where it came from. Not sure why it came. The doubt was not sneaky at all. It didn't creep up on me while I ran. I took one step into today's run and it popped up right in my face like a Jack-in-the-box.
Through the entire run I heard some kind of horrible voice that kept asking me, "Why are you doing this? What are you trying to prove?" It repeatedly said..."You can't, You won't!" I tried to tune it out only to hear it scream louder with every pound of my foot on the pavement. Not only did the voice scream louder with each passing step, but the muscles in my body seemed to be listening. I became more tired and weary as I ran.
I was bound and determined to ignore those negative thoughts and finish my run today... and I did. Every time the doubts got louder I attempted to counter act the attack of self by reminding myself of all that I have done to prepare for next Sunday.
The doubt said "you can't", then I said, "I did!"...4 20+ mile runs as I trained!
The doubt said, "you haven't worked hard enough", then I said, "I have"... Over 18 weeks of training and not a day missed!
The doubt said "you'll quit!," then I said, "I haven't yet!"... I have finished every mileage I set out to do!
The doubt said, "your friends think you're an idiot," I said, "then they are not real friends!"
The doubt said, "stop!", but I kept going!!!
Self-doubt is a huge part of a runner's mindset. One thing I have learned as I have read, and tried to become a knowledgeable runner, is that there are times when every runner hits the proverbial "rock bottom." Sometimes it's caused by an injury, an unmet running goal, a few missed work outs, or sometimes....just a mental battle.
For me, today was just one of many mental battles that I have had to fight through over the last year. I am determined to push through the funk and finish strong... Running is still awesome... It just ain't always pretty!