Sunday, January 6, 2013

Quieting the Inner Quitter

Seven Sundays from today is the first-ever Central Park Marathon.  Seven short weeks. 

Today is "long run" day, which in marathon training mode is both the best and worst day of the week.  It is the worst because - well because running sixteen miles (as I shall do today) is a fairly time-consuming and energy-consuming process.  It is the best because - well because sixteen miles on the open road gives one plenty of time to get well acquainted with one's mind.  
Getting acquainted with one's mind can in fact be dangerous business.  Especially so - in my experience - in the world of the marathon.  Last May during the New Jersey Marathon - at some point shortly after the fifteen mile mark - my mind filed for separation from my body.  It took close to forty-five minutes before I was able to wrest control of me from it.  During that period of time there was more than one moment when I thought that I would quit.  There was more than one moment when I attempted to quit.  It simply would not take. 
It would not take because - well because I finally won the battle for control with my mind (the fact that Margaret was waiting for me at the finish line had a great deal to do with it).  Yesterday morning when I was at the office my eye caught the day's entry on the calendar that Lucia bought me for Christmas.  It was entitled "Today's Tip":

Don't let your inner quitter get the best of you.  Realize you have control over your thoughts, not the other way around.  Try creating a thought-stoppage trigger, which is a phrase you whip out when your brain is getting in the way of your run.  It needs to be true, positve, forward-thinking and a verb.  Something like "Saddle Up!" or "Get Going!"
Good advice indeed. 


No comments: