Oh hey, Did I mention I decided on a marathon?! Yeah, that totally happened!
It's not till early next year, about 16 weeks away. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little terrified. So, here we are again back to documenting my way to the marathon. Lets hope this one goes better then the first, and considering the first was great, that's a lot of pressure!
Week 3 of marathon training went much better than the first couple of weeks. Hallelujah!
Now, I feel like I’m finally getting on track with my plan. And, hopefully, it’ll stay that way. The hardest part for me in training is to keep my head straight and not let anxiety run high. I’m a worrier and so I will overthink every.little.thing. & get my stomach in knots over it.
It’s definitely been a roller coaster ride emotionally and mentally as there have been days where I’m uber confident about running, and then days I fear I’ll never run again. There has been sobbing meltdowns & there have been times I’ve laughed hysterically.
Here’s the thing.
Fear is normal.
Sadness is normal.
Panic is normal.
There is nothing wrong with those reactions. You have to accept your situation and how it makes you feel, but you do NOT have to submit to those negative reactions and ignore the possibilities that exist. I was embarrassed over how difficult I found running to be after a few months of not really focusing on it. All I can do from here though is put in the work, follow my routine, and enjoy the experience ahead. It’s much easier said than done, but there’s no point getting discouraged about not being where I once was.. I can sulk every day and refuse to see the changes that have happened over the last few months, or I can focus on the fact that there have been changes, albeit minor ones, but things aren’t getting worse.
This led me to thinking about consistency and how important it is to stick to my training plan. The two most essential pieces of marathon training are getting in at least one “hard” workout and one “long” run every week. Beyond that, there is some flexibility in my plan–and I have to live my life and do what’s right for me. That said, marathon training is a commitment and takes A TON of time, energy, and planning. Especially at the beginning, it’s incredibly important to set yourself up for success by creating a routine of good habits. If you start off by skipping runs and slacking on workouts, you’ll pay for it later on (been there done that!)
Like all good things in life, it’s all about finding the balance that works for you.
Here is to finding that balance and staying on track... because.... I want that marathon!.
This year, I had a goal to really focus on finding balance. – it’s something that I don’t think that I was ready to put specific parameters around because I honestly wasn’t ready to admit that I didn’t have balance in my life. This entire year has been a roller-coaster for me as I went through something I never thought I would go through. I kinda threw it out there in a way where I knew that everything in my life was so out of whack, that finding balance was something that I knew I desperately needed. But I didn’t know quite what that looked like. Was it just being able to “disconnect” more often? Did I need to quit eating junk food? Were some people in my life right – I was just too uptight and needed to learn how to let go? Did I need to book some solo travel adventures to “discover” myself?
Well, it turns out that it was a little bit of each of those.
The biggest thing I’ve learned?
It’s okay to be selfish. For so long, I was operating under the impression that if everyone else around me is happy, then I felt like I was “happy” too. There are so many things wrong with that and I realize that now. If only I would have caught on a little bit earlier. Finding happiness in yourself is the most important thing that you can ever have – it’s the foundation for anything in your life. Yes, it’s great if you make other people happy – but the minute they are not happy, then how do you feel? What does that do for your self-worth?
I’ve always been an optimistic person – But there’s a difference between being optimistic and feeling happy. Looking on the bright side is inevitable as an optimist, but living in that bright side is mandatory to truly be happy in your life. I wish I could tell you the exact directions to do it. It’s different for every single person – what makes me happy could very well likely make you or another person extremely miserable. But, I can say, once I realized that I needed to focus on my happiness, it wasn’t that hard to discover how to find it… However, it’s a journey that can be tough. It can be hard to finally focus on YOU, especially if you are someone (ahem, me) that likes to focus so much on other people. It can be really difficult to take a look at your life as it exists today and admit that it kinda sucks, especially if you’ve worked really hard to get where you are. Notice, I didn’t say impossible. It can be done. But you have to be ready for the hard truth because if you can face that, the other side is definitely worth it.
A few other notable areas I've learned to balance....
Surround yourself with like minded people...
I focus on who I want to let into my life. Yes, you read that right – “let” in. The negative influences and time suckers are now gone. I no longer stay friends with people because we have a “history” or because I feel like I owe them one. The people in my life are there because I love them and I love what they bring to the table. I surround myself with people that I feel make me better, and I hope they say the same, too.
Yes, I’m a runner and I’ve run numerous races before this year… but I never felt like my health was in my control. I could definitely knock out long runs like nobody’s business, but I didn’t feel like I was in the best shape of my life. My weight seemed to go up, and I just never felt confident in how I looked. I changed that this year, both from a nutrition and fitness perspective… I’m still working on figuring out the weight loss portion but I LOVE how far I’ve come mentally and physically. I have more that I want to conquer in this arena, but I love the progress that I’ve found since I started focusing on finding balance. Having that trainer guy help me focus on my fitness and nutrition is definitely a huge help, too.
Seriously, where does the time go? I feel like I’m finally getting a better handle on this and my focus on balance has been to get rid of those time sucks. And also a balance of making sure my time is spent in the right places… with the right people.
Definitely a work in progress. :)
With so many things, people and opportunity in the world, it’s hard to understand why we feel alone and incomplete and empty at times. Throughout my life, I have walked through some dark seasons, felt incomplete or like something was wrong with me. I longed for acceptance and love, but deeper than that, just reassurance that I was enough. . .
Have you ever read something that speaks so deeply to your soul that you hang on every word. This morning I read the following and it really spoke to me and I felt like sharing.
“I never meant for you to be self-sufficient. Instead, I designed you to need me not only for daily bread but also for fulfillment of deep yearnings. I carefully crafted your longings and feelings of incompleteness, to point you to Me… Beware of trying to pacify those longings with lesser gods: people, possessions, power.”
I feel so ashamed of this. I have searched for fulfillment of these needs through objects and running. I was temporarily pacifying these desires only to be left feeling lonely and searching for more. I have felt weak, broken, and as if it were up to me to fix myself. This message was a beautiful reminder that we were created with a need that only one person can fulfill. He knows the deepest desires and longings of our heart and is waiting for us to cry out to Him.
Rejoice in your needs knowing He will make you complete. Linger in His presence today. Accept His peace with gratefulness as you begin the day ahead.
Is it really as simple as that?? I think so, or at least it should be.
You... me... we all need to get over that little thing called “fear.”
Far too often, people don’t follow through on chasing their dreams because they are too busy hiding from fear. We all need to stop fearing. Let your dreams in, and chase them.
Now, like most people, I have a few fears and of varying levels, and when I say ‘fear’ I don’t mean spiders or heights—I mean those subconscious internal fears. Like the fear of failing, for example; or disappointing someone, not being able to accomplish something, or of how difficult it may be. We often don’t admit to fearing these things aloud, and a majority of the time we don’t admit them internally to ourselves, either. We tell ourselves that we are fine just where we are in the safe zone, that nothing is wrong, that everything is good. But here’s the thing: staying where you feel safe is your mind’s subconscious way of getting away with cowering in fear. When you give in to fear, you are letting yourself become scared of false things that haven’t actually happened. Stop focusing on fear, and start focusing on your dreams. Remove “can’t” from your vocabulary.
You are HERE, NOW. You are in THIS moment. Stop thinking about what has happened up until now or about what is to come.
When facing fear & self-doubt, you need to concentrate on why you are doing what you are doing. Your ‘why’ is what wakes you up every morning; it’s what pushes you forward when you can’t find the motivation to push yourself. When you begin to doubt yourself, think about your why. If it’s not a reason that genuinely comes from your heart, self-doubt might take over your actions, and feel like it’s swallowing you whole. Once you define your why & goal(s), the key is to bring them into your daily life as much as possible. It is that simple. The more you think about your why & your goal, the more you work towards it. And, even better, if you are thinking enough about them on a regular basis, you will unconsciously factor them into your life as time goes on!
IF YOU WANT SOMETHING, IT IS YOURS TO CHASE AND THAT IS WHAT WE HAVE TO REALIZE ON A DAILY BASIS.
I fear failure because right now I’m fearing risk; I fear taking chances; I fear getting hurt; I fear letting people down; but more so, I fear letting myself down.
But there’s a shift that happens when we learn to push past those fears, or rather, embrace those fears.
I am pushing past my fear every day, and for me, that had to start with managing my anxiety.
There were days, weeks, sometimes months on end, where I would sit in my bed all day crying from the uncomfortable sensation of not comprehending the world around me. I would constantly find myself asking
Will it ever end?
I feared life, I feared people, I feared losing more than I had already lost.
It was times like these that I wholeheartedly did not think there was an answer.
The strong, independent person I have become, the mindset I have gained, the positivity, the sheer will to constantly push forward, the fearlessness i have acquired is a result of what I have been through...... and I wouldn't be where i am without it.
See fear and EMBRACE IT.
You have so much power and life and love and ability inside of you, there’s no reason to be held back in your day to day life because of fear. Push past it, don’t hide from it; because if you are too busy hiding, you can’t spend time chasing your dreams.
After years of constant pain, confusion, and missing out on life—I had a lot of fear- It consumed me. To say I was scared was an understatement. But, I didn’t run from the fear. I stood right there next to it and I’m where I am right now because of it.