When The Mind Says GO and the Legs Say NO
I was incredibly tired this morning. Getting less than four hours of sleep last night didn't promote any enthusiasm when the alarm went off at 4:15 am. I've had a series of great runs this week. Each of them has gone to plan and it would be nice to keep it that way. My mind was keen, although my eyelids felt like they had weights on them. My body felt exhausted. Thank goodness it's a slow run today!
My Attitude Was Great
Although I felt less than wonderful from lack of sleep, my mind was still riding the high from the last three runs that were just fantastic. I stood in the bathroom, hazy-eyed, trying to focus on my jewelry wraps. I like picking out my sayings for the day based on how I feel. Or how I want to feel.
I chose one going into this marathon training cycle. It was the first item of jewelry I chose from Momentum. I was scanning through the options and when I saw this one I knew it was for me. Although not in the way I expected, I have honored approach this so far in training. I haven't given in to guilt or panic about my training taking a slight detour more than once. Every day is a new day and I will make it the best I can.
That includes taking it easy now and then.
I'm not afraid to try. Not every run has to be great on paper (or on an app) to be good. Some runs are just good for the soul and ignoring them takes away from the enjoyment of training.
I picked out Beast Mode to keep my fearless statement company, and a couple for the other arm. Carrying anything in my hands or holding something during a run, I can do without. Yet I love my wraps and leather cuffs. They have become part of my running life and I hate to leave them behind.
How Can You Do Beast Mode, Tired, On A Slow Run?
It's quite simple. Knowing that my body was tired didn't matter. It worked out well for me that it coincided with a slow run so I didn't have to switch anything around. My mind knew this was going to be a heavy plod, but my heart felt like a champion. I have learned not to evaluate every run by how my body feels or performs, but rather how I feel about myself. There are tough days where I struggle mentally, but today wasn't one of them.
I made peace with my weary body, promised not to be unkind to my tired legs and declared this to be a fearlessly beast mode run, because I chose to do it. Staying in bed is always an option and not necessarily a bad decision. But my heart wanted to run. So I ran.
Bottom line: It's not all in the mind. If your attitude is right, your mindset may be exactly what you need to carry you through.
A Really Slow Run
It's kind of the whole point of today's run, regardless of how I felt. Not a long, slow run; just a slow run. And oh boy, was it slow! I didn't have my pace screen on because it was irrelevant today, but I could feel my legs dragging.
The strange thing was realizing pretty much from the start that my mind felt peaceful. I wasn't worried about anything running related. There were no thoughts of not being ready for the marathon; no fears or concerns. Just this quiet awareness that things would coast in low gear today because that's where I am. Besides, there is something very peaceful yet invigorating about getting out in the dark, early hours when everything is so quiet.
This is definitely one of the slowest runs I've had all year and it was slotted perfectly into just the right day to work with me and for me. I thought about all kinds of things. I have no idea where some of these thoughts came from. Old memories randomly popped up and floated through my head, followed by something else, completely unrelated.
Hey Mom, You Look Like a School Bus
These words came out of our teen daughter's mouth before dinner last night as she excitedly announced that she saw me running along the trail as her bus drove by on the way to school.
Immediately realizing she was referring to my array of lights and strobes, I proudly thanked her.
My husband looked puzzled. “I'm not sure I'd take that as a compliment. Or am I missing something?”
We all laughed together when daughter explained that anyone who claimed they didn't see me would have a hard time explaining themselves. It's a safety thing.
Lost and Found
Apparently, it's also a good neighbor thing. This morning I noticed a guy in running clothes scrambling about the ground up ahead. I slowed even more, wondering what he was up to. It was clear he was looking for something. I greeted him as I approached from behind, not wanting to startle him. He said something about dropping something so I stopped. His key fell out of his pocket and he heard it fall, but couldn't see it.
That part of the road is particularly dark. There are a lot of trees, little traffic so early and shrouded in darkness with absolutely no street lights or buildings to help. I'm always on high alert on this stretch. There are lots of palms and shrubs and you can hear the nocturnal creatures moving around in the quiet darkness, well before sunrise.
I moved my hand over the gravel surface, shining my one of my Knuckle Lights at the ground and the lonely key lit up almost immediately, glinting in the light. Such a silly thing, but it made me so glad I was slower getting to that area today. I've lost a key on a run before and sat outside the house for hours because the battery in the garage door keypad battery was dead and there was no other way in.
At the very least, there was one person out there who was thankful that I was around this morning.
Forget About Everything. Just Enjoy The Moment
There is nothing interesting or exciting to report. My body continued to lag, laden with tiredness, yet my thoughts were light and free. In spite of how I felt physically, it was as if my mind and body were completely detached. My mind was mine and the body just came along for the ride. A difficult sensation to describe, but by no means unpleasant.
I think my run was around eight miles. I haven't looked at it or synced it yet. It will load whenever I connect and sync up the next one. But it was just what I needed and I'm so glad I went out today. There was never a question about staying in bed. Perhaps it would be the smarter choice, but I survived the day just fine. Besides, if I didn't run, you'd have nothing to read today so it worked out pretty well for you too!
I believe tomorrow I have hills and it's a shorter run as well. Because on Friday I have a long run and new fuel to test. No missing out due to bad planning this week!