Running has taught me many things, from respecting the distance of a marathon (it’s all too easy to say, “It’s only 26.2 miles!”), through to running in the right kit. One of the biggest things, that I hope I have finally learned, is that it is really easy to unnecessarily beat yourself up over a bad run or race.
Everybody has a bad run from time-to-time. It could be that you didn’t sleep properly the night before, maybe you forgot your trusty headphones or maybe it’s absolutely teaming down with rain and you got soaked through.
The big thing to remember is, it’s only a run! Take that bad run on the chin and move on! It has taken me a long time to work that out and, sometimes, I still beat myself up. The last time being the Peterborough Half Marathon just a couple of weeks ago!
During the Half Marathon, I had to slow down to a walk quite a few times. As you know, my running hasn’t been great this year because of the seizures and depression, etc, etc. Alas, the weather wasn’t on our side that day and I just ran out of energy and motivation to keep running. I went back to my default position that I wasn’t “running” so I must be failing! Gayle, who is my guiding star, pointed out that I wasn’t failing at all. I was still moving forward, covering the distance and doing much better than someone sitting at home watching the TV. I’ve found this very hard to comprehend during my short time as a runner, but she is right. I could have been sat at home in the dry watching the TV, but instead, I was out there, working against my health and the weather trying to reach my goal.
Taking this advice from Gayle has made me realise, it doesn’t matter if I am last over the line, just reaching the finish is an awesome achievement. I have promised Gayle that I will try to continue to think like this and be more positive when I am out there. Yes, there will be times when I have to pull out of a race or stop one of my runs short because of injuries or other extenuating circumstances, but spinning a bad run into a positive will help me overcome adversity and reach the goals I have set myself.