Distance Running: A world far crazier (better) than anything past the looking glass

Running is a crazy, paradoxical, numerical-obsessedo, backwards world.

Just when you don’t think you can run another step, you push through five more minutes, then instantly you feel like your legs have transformed into two totally different running entities. You go on for miles.
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The first interval for a runner can sometimes feel like the worst. That’s where the nerves are, getting started.

Races are even crazier, poised at the line, in the seconds before the gun is about to CRACK you feel certain if they take any longer to fire it you’ll explode. Then, CRACK, and the whole world slips away.

“Back to those intervals…ya, suckers say the hardest is the first one…plowing through miler number three of five HAS to be more painful,” you think.

You then say, “Legs, don’t worry, this is the last interval we have to so…promise.” You say that after every one. Until you finish. Scr##w honesty.
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Funny how a running partner that you train with feels like a war partner. You come to know them so well, read their breathing and stride as well as your own. You become intrinsically linked in the shared quest for your best.

Easy days can feel like the epitome of hypocrisy sometimes.

Out of nowhere getting blessed with one of THOSE days is a special kind of euphoria a runner never forgets.

The good days, the slog runs, the meh ones, the mentally tough workouts you’re proud of, the long runs that you wish never end…all of it. It’s crazy stuff. But it’s runner crazy and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

1) Just before you start a race, what makes you feel confident on the line?

2) Best lie you’ve told yourself/legs to get through a workout?

3) One of THOSE days, how many do you think a runner gets?
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19 thoughts on “Distance Running: A world far crazier (better) than anything past the looking glass

  1. You have a new blog look! It’s great 🙂 (Somehow it stopped updating my feeds which is why I’m so behind in noticing :S)

    The second last time I did intervals I thought I was going to throw up. It was awful! I now go a little easier on the lies so I don’t get to quite that point, but definitely have to do a lot of self talk to get through the middle rounds when my legs want to go home!

  2. 1. what makes me feel confident…. well I guess knowing that at that point there is nothing I could do to change the out come. I am at the starting line, therefore I must be ready because there is no other option! 🙂
    2. I either tell myself that I am a machine or I pretend I am a little bug just flying though the sky effortlessly.
    3. One of THOSE days. I think runners get them often, I think it is more of having the right mind sent altogether. But I think it takes a special type of person. Not everyone has that SPARKLE!

  3. Tomorrow is interval day… I actually love interval training. I just keep telling myself that I can get through each effort by listening to my iPod and putting one foot in front of the other….and repeat.
    On Monday I had an awesome yet hard run and eventually I got to the point where I just wanted to keep going forever, unfortunately I needed to go home and take care of reality – why does that always happen?! I guess it was one of THOSE days 🙂
    I am never, ever, ever, confident at the starting line of a race. I am a nervous little butterfly filled stomach of a runner. All I keep thinking is, you can cry, you can scream inside your head, you can even walk if you need to, but you will cross that finish line – Mama said so!

  4. What gives me confidence at the starting line is all the training and miles I logged before the race. When a distance seems intimidating, I tell myself, you got this! You’ve ran this distance before and didn’t die! I’ll be telling (lying to) myself this when I toe the starting line of my first full marathon…

    • haha…i use the same line, “you got this!” in my head it sounds like from this show, i’m blanking at the moment…but it’s a comedy thing, voice cracks on ‘got’…lol

  5. I agree with JoJo. It is all my training and work that I have banked that gives me confidence at the start line. And of course all the bad runs I survived. Surviving those one give me the confidence to face anything. I think my last marathon experience has pumped me for any race. It was ugly and I kept going. Bring it on!!! :=) Can you ship some of those signs to Oz. Or maybe another tee design?!?! 😉

  6. Just before a race, I feel confident on the line {although lets face it, I’m not fast enough to stand up front even at the smallest race 🙂 } by knowing I’m rested and that I’m capable of completing the distance. No matter what other goals I have going into the race, the biggest one is always to finish.

    When I do 6×800 I break it down into sets of 2 and pretend I’m only doing those two that I’m on. It makes it much more manageable and I guess it’s a way of tricking my legs and brain.

  7. THOSE days are rare. But i figure if you stick at it, you’re guaranteed another. Eternal chase.

    Oddly, the thing that gets me psyched at the start line is knowing the online community. It doesn’t matter what happens, because later I can recap it proudly or awkwardly. Either is fine ;-).
    Also… come back!

    • the days are rare, elusive, but fully exist. i kinda think all runners are motivated each day in the quest to find the next one.
      PS- ugh, thanks for missing me…did u get my email? i am working on getting back soon! xoxo

  8. Pingback: Two Whole Running Legs: Gratitude and kicking motivation lulls in the @$$ |

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