Found my running mojo- Respect the Run

I’ve had this running post in my head since Wednesday of last week, and only just have a few minutes to sit down and get it out. I’m training for my 2nd Indianapolis 500 Mini Marathon.  Indianapolis is my city and  “The Mini” as we call it around here is always a topic of conversation every year.  Last year was my first one and it was very enjoyable. It is 13.1 miles of people cheering for you along the sidelines as bands  set up playing along the way.  The route takes you onto the  actual track for a loop and part of our downtown.   I followed up  that first 13.1 last year with the inaugural Women’s Half Marathon. Similar route but MUCH different in the support and entertainment arena.  It is probably more like what  most Half Marathons are like, you are running for yourself without much benefit of sideline support outside of the water and fuel stops and the handful of  husbands and friends on the sidelines.  

This year I signed up for both of those halfs again, and in my last running post I wrote about feeling kind of meh this  year about training. Partially it was the been there done that aspect,  last winter was pretty brutal and being a very beginner runner all of that outside training in the cold, wind, ice and snow served to  fuel my inner badass. This year it just felt like,  how soon will it get warm again?!? My right foot has been bothering me a little and I was afraid I was getting another stress fracture.   So far I have still not called Dr.  Hate because I am able to run with no pain and the pain I’m experiencing after has lessened.  I picked up new shoes after Monday’s run and tonight I will be running on them for the first time.

Running is 20% physical and 80% mental.  If you want to be able t push yourself and your body all of the miles needed to properly train and then race, you have to have something inside of you keeping you going.  Some runners adopt a mantra, a phrase they can repeat to themselves to help them through the rough spots.   Last year I had several, most of them were  resolute tirades aimed toward all of the crap that I went through during the Almost Divorce. This year, I had nothing.  I  had nothing so badly I had even forgotten about the need or want of a mantra.  I started this training program a few weeks ago woefully out of shape, as in struggle to even get a mile without walking out of shape.   As I run more it gets better by leaps and bounds. Last Wednesday was pace trials. Our first 3 miler and  a timed start.  I followed through on my plan to drop from the advanced group to the beginner group and let both coaches know.   Once they let us begin I started my run. If you haven’t ever trained with a group I highly recommend it. It is nice to have so many people around you, even if you start to spread out as the miles climb there is the comfort of knowing that even if there are LOTS of people ahead of you, there is usually also someone behind you. There are people you don’t know very well to talk to, there is always someone to give you some encouragement to just keep going.  I started in a  pack with about 8 other girls in my pace range and we kept up at about a 12 min pace for the first 2 miles.    I ran without walking no problems for those first two miles, the street was ice from sleet and the rainy icy pellets were hitting me in the face.  Cars were sliding on the streets we were running on and I started to feel it. The badass feeling was returning. I am conquering nature.  We turned onto the part of the route I call Farley/Tukle home, because it represents the last mile or so and I started to slow down. This was pace trials I  wanted to have as good of a time as I could, I wanted to be sub 12, not 12+.  Then it just sort of popped into my head,  run without walking. If I can just keep running without walking I can rock this to the best of my  ability. For the next mile as our group started to spread out  I ran that mantra through my head. Run without walking, run without walking, RUN WITHOUT WALKING!  And before I knew it I was headed down the stretch of the last tenth of a mile and to a time of 32:36.  I had found my mojo, I am conquering myself! It was an absolute breakthrough on several fronts. One it reminded me that I lacked a mantra. Two it reminded me that if you train, your body will respond. That you will never be as weak as you are in any given moment if you just keep moving. That your body is capable of so much more than you routinely ask of it and if you put the work in, it will reward you by responding.  I walked  away from that pace run knowing that I wouldn’t have to worry about walking anymore during training.  If I do the miles and keep up the training, if I fuel and water my body properly then I will perhaps even  be able to finish  in a better time that last year, set a new half PR.

Saturday’s ran came and it was  super  windy, Saturdays are a times run, 45 minutes as far as you can go, a simple 22.5 minutes out and 22.5 minutes back.  So group seems to stay a little tighter on Saturdays and I did a lot of talking about my weekend plans so I didn’t really need to call upon a mantra.

Monday’s run came and as I suspected the head coach placed me in the beginner group with the other girls and guys above 10 min miles.  We did a 3 and I turned onto Farley/Turkle home I knew I would have to dig for that last mile.  I didn’t feel like I needed to walk  but I knew I needed to go inside myself and find a mental place that would propel me to the end.  Then it came to me, respect the run. My mantra for this year will be respect the run and in extension respect the runner.  A reminder to myself that what I am giving my body and mind via running is nothing but good and pure. That  it is a gift to  be able to run, to  be alive to have the struggle of breath, to be married to have the support of my husband. It is a gift, this body God gave me,  and I will respect it via the run. I will use the run to mold it. I will respect and cherish the clarity and endorphin rush running brings me. I will  remember that The RUN isn’t something to be trifled with. RESPECT THE RUN!!!!

Happy running Lovies!

2 Comments on “Found my running mojo- Respect the Run”

  1. tabitha says:

    My mantra: This is MINE! 🙂

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