When a race doesn't go as you planned or as you KNOW you can do - that is the time you sit back and regroup.
2011 was a stellar racing year for me. It was my first year running, so almost all my races produced a PR, Award or something like that. Afterall, I had nothing else to compare it to.
I was in my top shape and form from October - December. Then, my physical (and mental form) took a PLUNGE after the Vegas Half.
I had NO idea how much that race affected me and I would need to fight and fight to get back to my form (which I am still not there)
For months I struggled, mentally. When the slightest tummy growl would happen during a race, I would panic and have to fight of memories of that horrific night. It's been a slow process to get my mind back to where it needs to be, but I feel I am on the right track now.
Oh yes, I have PR'd and won several race awards this season - but honestly, I have not ENJOYED the races much. What's the point of a PR or Award if you have a lousy time during the race?
There were times in the past few months I didn't want to race. I would step into my corral going, "oh okay, wow - are we done yet?" There were races I almost did not race (like the LA Marathon & Hollywood Half, which I am glad I did - because I did LOVE those experiences).
But, that wasn't good enough for me. I remember that at each race in 2011 I was always so excited to see where my body would take me, be around great runner friends from all over the country and a lot more.
Unfortunately, in the first part of the year I made some hasty decisions to be around people who I THOUGHT shared my same goals & values. Sadly, they didn't. I let their overt competitiveness get in MY way, and it took the fun out of racing for ME. While it might be good for someone else, it was not a fit for me. Moved on....
I quickly removed myself from those relationships. My last few races, I have felt freer in my running than I have been since Fall of 2011. Oh yea, Running Mojo is back!
However, I also realized that there were times I still felt lethargic and tired, for no reason.
Then, I remembered two habits I would do EVERYDAY until the Vegas Half.
1. Eating Chia Seed Gel every morning
2. Drinking Hot Water with Lemon every morning
In my process of my stomach needing to heal from the sickness of that night, I also stopped drinking hot water and lemon and eating chia seeds. Not sure why, I just stopped.
Funny, how we loose habits so easily, don't we?
Only within the last month have I picked up those habits again - and if I had not experienced it myself, I wouldn't believe the difference it has made me FEEL. My energy is high, my stomach feels great and I am feeling FAB-O!
- I even ENJOY running on the Treadmill! (makes me wonder what is inside of those chia seeds).
- Maybe you need to be part of a team or club or maybe you need to run solo.
- Maybe you need to explore different training plans or find a running coach.
Be in control of your running and racing. It's ALWAYS good to receive encouragement from others, but never - ever let them tell you how you should run or what success should be. They are not YOU. They don't know your life and your situation. Run at YOUR best. You know if it is your best when you cross that Finish Line.
If you think you could of done better - then find out what will make you do better. You are in control of your racing career. Control it.
For me, I am so happy to be at a place I am enjoying the run and the racing again. And yes, happy to have Chia Seeds and Hot Lemon Water part of my life, again.
What have you done to regain your Running Mojo?
(c) C. Ragsdale 2011-12
Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
Running Coach, Certified Sports Nutritionist & Public Speaker
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