Reflections on my (lack of) Motivation

So, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about my running recently, specifically my disappointment with how I performed at my last few races and how my body is feeling about running. This is just me having a pity party for myself and getting my thoughts down on “paper.” How I’m feeling is not particularly special.  I’m sure many of you have had similar thoughts to these at one point or another. I try as much as I can to blog for me, and right now, this is honestly how I’m feeling.  At least some of the time.  Sometimes I love running and I feel really good about it. I drafted this a few days ago when I was feeling pretty low – its gotten a bit better since then. But for posterity’s sake, I like to be honest about how I feel.

Since I think best in bullet points/numbers, that’s how I’m going to separate my thoughts so they become a little more coherent, instead of one big rambling paragraph.

1. I have not enjoyed/felt like running.  I haven’t stuck with a training plan because I don’t really enjoy running right now.  I really am enjoying my workouts with my trainer and I’ve really been enjoying yoga, but running is not really doing anything for me right now.

2. There is no sense of urgency with my training because I’m not doing unknown races distances.  I know I can do a half marathon now.  I think I was so committed to training for my first half because I was terrified of what would happen if I didn’t train well.  I’ve become complacent.  And guess what…it wasn’t hard because I actually did train!  When you don’t train well, its really freaking hard.

3.  My body hates me.  No, really. My scoliosis is really causing issues, and my back line is tight causing achilles pain and plantar fasciitis-like pain.  Who wants to run when you feel like that?

4. There are so many other things that are going on in my life…running is taking a back seat. I’m planning a wedding, the holidays are coming, and work is crazy.  Running is not the first thing on my mind.

5. My nutrition is slipping. I’m not eating as clean as I should be.  I am justifying my unhealthy eating or telling myself that it could be worse instead of acknowledging the problem.  I feel like I’ll be healthier and will enjoy exercising more if I’m fueling myself better for that activity.

6. I often feel like I lack support from my friends. Outside of my blogging community of course (I LOVE YOU GUYS – you are so awesome!!!).  I mean my friends that I see in the flesh all the time.  I don’t really choose to share my blog with many people from real life.  I think Hollie and Danny are the only ones who read this that I know from real life.  Non-runners aren’t always interested in my running highs/lows, or they simply can’t relate. And maybe I might be surprised if I share more with them, but I digress. I don’t have a running partner.  There are local running groups, but back to point 4….life is insane.

Since she’s the only one I really know IRL, I spent some time talking to Hollie about this the other day and she gave me some really good advice: ” Honestly, I think taking a break from running is the best thing you can do for yourself.  Don’t run until you feel like it.  When you start to crave a good run then run again.  You’ll just feel so much better.”

I don’t know what this means for the last two races I’ve signed up for this fall.  Do I take a break after them? Do I defer them? Will I just feel more defeated than I already am if I defer? These are things I need to work out for myself, no one else can really answer them for me.

Do you ever want to break up with running? What motivates you to keep going when its tough?

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9 thoughts on “Reflections on my (lack of) Motivation

  1. I say take a break from running for a couple weeks, or a month, or however long it takes to actually want to do it again. It’s supposed to be for fun, not a chore. Maybe try running your first race and see how you feel. You could also be burnt out from a long training season or the changing daylight. That has been happening a little to me.

    • Thanks – I think you might be right. I think a lot of it is being burnt out and all the pressure I put on myself. I do think that the change in daylight is really messing with me. I kind of go into hibernation mode 🙂

  2. Hi. In order to give myself a bit more perspective… I would buddy up with a new runner. You don’t need to train as hard or often. You see instantly how much you know and how far you have come. Plus you give back. Using special crutches, I walked two kilometres per day with a paralysed man – took one hour per kilometre. Helped a friend do her first half marathon. And did a few kids runs with the mentally disabled. Find someone who moves you to tears – then help them reach your dreams. The next day you will know if you want to run and why 🙂

  3. I don’t think it’s a bad thing to take a break. There are tons of sports and activities out there. It pains me to hear people say they hate running but they do it anyway because ______, Unless you have to run for a job or something (military?). I don’t like CrossFit, so I don’t do it (it’s a cool activity, just not for me). I don’t think defering a race is a bad idea either, or maybe transferring your entry if you know someone else who wants to do it, or running with a first timer?

    • Thanks, girl, I agree. I don’t hate running, I’m just having a little fight with it right now 🙂 I do have a friend who is running her first half, so I might to it to support her – that’s a wonderful idea. I have thought about deferring, but spoiler alert – I might be backing of off half marathons for awhile, so I feel like I need to do it because I don’t think I’ll do it next year. I appreciate your advice, you are so sweet.

  4. I could tell you were kinda hitting a wall. I say take some time from running until you feel the hunger again. I also don’t have a strong support group outside of my blog. It not that nobody wants to be supportive they just don’t get the “the runner life” keep trying other forms of exercise to keep your fitness up and watch your nutrition as best you can. Once you tie the knot and getting all the wedding business maybe your view on running will change as life gets back to a new kind of normal. I cheering for you!!! 🙂

    • Yeah, I think I’ll be ok after I get over the hump of my next half, honestly. I’ve talked through a lot of things with my trainer, and I think with a renewed mental focus, I’ll be ok 🙂 I still plan on doing a March half (Shamrock!), but after that, taking a big break! And I agree about non-runners just not quite understanding. The good thing is, I do have a lot of friends that are into some sort of exercise program, so hopefully we can relate more on that level.

      Thanks for having my back and cheering for me. You are such a great support!

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