8 miles of Confidence

I am constantly in awe of the power of the brain. We have all heard the common saying "Running is 90% mental" but I would go further to say that this is common for most aspects in life. 

When I was in college athletics we were constantly taught the power of the brain and positive thinking. I have seen first hand the success it can bring, while also seeing the destruction that can occur from negative thinking. 

Tonight was a real testament to this. Anthony and I had planned on doing a long 8 mile Bike/Run date (he rode the bike and I ran). As we were getting ready to go, Michael (Anthony's little brother and our 3rd roommate), asked if he could join. Michael loves to run but generally runs short, fast distances and spends the rest of the time lifting weights in the gym.

All three of us started out in positive spirits; the weather was perfect. Now, I was adamant of keeping a 10 min/mile pace and had let the boys know that I wasn't changing the pace no matter what! I had been feeling kind of ill lately so I wanted to keep a comfortable pace. 

The miles seemed to go by smoothly. I am a confident runner- I believe that is why I enjoy running. I don't take myself to seriously and I don't put pressure on myself. 

As we were running I noticed that Michael wanted to speed up. Anthony and I kept going at our set speed. At first I started to question my ability. Maybe I wasn't in such great shape anymore, maybe I am slacking, Should I have been sprinting too? Was my pace too slow? Then I started to come up with excuses: It is so hot here in Houston, I haven't felt well all weekend, etc. I was doubting myself and starting to get frustrated. I noticed all of this and I quickly changed the channel. I said to myself that I was keeping this pace, I was going to enjoy it, and I wasn't going to compare myself to Michael or try to change my game plan. 

I am really proud of that 8 mile run. I spent about 5 minutes of doubt and quickly shoved it away. I finished just under 80mins. It felt great. At about mile 6 Michael's sprinting hurt him. He was miserable those last 2 miles, he would run and then walk and was not enjoying it. 

I have to remember that everyone has different ways to workout. I am no longer torturing myself for workouts, no longer trying to compete with the person next to me, I will always be an athlete but it's time for me to enjoy all of it, not just the wins!  I was proud of that 8 miles of confidence, 8 miles of a perfect pace, 8 miles that I mentally enjoyed. :)

Now time to blog and relax!

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