So, I have this habit, this thing that I do that I would like to stop.
It's like this: I go out for a run, and I'm "enjoying"* it. The first couple laps are always rough, but by Lap 3 I've generally found my groove -- dog's in heaven and all is right with the world, right?
But...then one of two things happen:
Another runner shows up at the track -- and by runner, I mean a fast runner.
(Wait, let me clarify: NOT a 17-year-old high school wunderkind who can and will TRULY smoke my azz in a blur of speed and sound, no -- I admire those kids all to hell, and godspeed to them)!
No, I'm talking about someone in remotely my same age bracket who runs at a "normal" fast-paced (to me) speed -- maybe 10 minutes/mile, maybe a little bit faster. They show up, and of course, proceed to lap me in their adorable little runner's shorts and perky little assets (males and females alike). How do I respond? Either I get stupidly competitive, speed up and run out of gas almost immediately, or I lose my concentration and get embarrassed (like anyone's comparing us in the stands with stopwatches or what-have-you, sheesh S.B.O.!)
So, I'm running, and I hit Lap 7 (1.75 miles into my 3.25 mile run) and start to get tired/bored/cold/hot/thirsty/w
hatever. Suddenly, I find I'm talking myself out of running the whole 13 Laps. This happens a lot if it's my first day back at the track after extended treadmilling (and yes, this happened to me yesterday)! A voice inside my head tells me it's okay to stop at Lap 10, or 9, or even 8 because, you know, it's been a while since I hit the track and, hey -- at least I got out here and after all, running two miles is pretty good, especially for my first day back, I mean, it wasn't that long ago that I couldn't even run a single lap...blahblahblah...
Either scenario here, the end result is the same: I end up giving in to the seductive little voice in my head that's embarrassed or tired or whatever and do, in fact, STOP RUNNING. Not all the time, for sure. There are many times that I don't give in to it, but I certainly do give in more than I'd like. Sometimes (like yesterday) I give in a lot sooner (went to the track planning on running 11 Laps and walking 2, ended up running only 8 and walking 5). Sometimes the little voice will only end up talking me out of a single lap. Sometimes I tell the voice to eff off and I power my way through.
When I did that 10K, way back when? Total Scenario #1, for sure. I was running shoulder-to-shoulder with thousands of ("real") runners and I lost my nerve. Stopped to walk way early and only ran in short spurts the rest of the race.
Yep, I let the voice get to me.
I'm really tired of this happening, but I don't know how to break this habit. It makes me feel weak, and I don't like disappointing myself.
I KNOW this is all in my head. What I need from you, dear SparkPeeps, is some fodder to fire back at that little voice when it appears, to keep me from giving in as often as I do!
Basically, I need to learn how to become a bully: I need to learn how to bully that seductive "it's okay to stop" voice and put it in it's place.
I'm running a race the first week in April, and it will be my first race back since the disastrous 10K in 2009. I'd really like to go into this run with an actual game plan for how to deal with this bad habit before race day.
So, any thoughts on ways to be a bully?
(Other than, you know, giving that seductive voice a swirlie in the girl's bathroom?)
All suggestions are welcome!
*Running still does suck, though. For about an hour, three times a week!