I've written before, and I'm sure I'll write again, that for me, running is about having the right, positive mental attitude.
I'm sure I look silly, but when it gets hard for me, I have to pump myself up with a pep talk, and yes, I do talk to myself, just a bit, while I'm running. Last night, about half way through my run, I passed a family of four riding their bikes, and then I passed them again near the end. Both times, I was talking to myself, and with my IPOD on, I didn't realize how loud I was being. I'm certain the dad thought I was a complete lunatic as he watched me talk to myself, but oh well. Maybe he's a runner and understands!?!? She says, hopefully.
Last night's run was particularly hard for me almost from the get go. I'm not sure what was wrong, I have a feeling I hadn't waited long enough for my dinner to digest. So, I had to start early with my motivational speech.
I started out by reminding myself: "if you can jump around with Jillian for 45 minutes, you can run for 30." That seemed to work for about 1/2 a mile.
Then, I started to develop a "Runner's Side Stitch," which got really bad around the 1 mile mark, at that point, I kept thinking about all the websites I could visit to find out how it happens and how to prevent it. For an explanation of the runner's stitch, I visted coolrunning.com for a description. A runner's stitch is a "pain in the side of the upper abdomen at the base of the ribs." It is caused by a spasm of the diaphragm. According to the site, getting rid of the spasm could be as easy as slowing down or stopping.
Well, I already run pretty slowly and stopping is not an option, so I just muddled through by trying to regulate my breathing and taking deep breaths. Much to my surprise, deep, rhythmic breathing is also one way to get rid of the runner's stitch, according to coolrunning.com. What do you know? I actually may know what I'm doing.
Once the side stitch started to calm down, my calves started to burn and my left foot felt like I was running on pins and needles. At that point, I started composing a post in my head about how good it felt to finish 3.0 miles for the first time in 12 or 13 years. I can't recall what I composed in my head now that I'm sitting down to type this entry, but whatever it was it got me through to the last phase.
I know I don't have a lot of people reading my blog, but I know there are a few of you out there, so let me say, "thanks," because it was you guys, too, who I thought about while trying to get me through my run.
As I closed in the home stretch, my mantra changed to "You got this! You got this!" I was, to say the least ecstatic when I reached my driveway. I'm pleased with myself and will try to keep it up!