About long runs.

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“The key to success is to focus our conscious minds on things we desire not things we fear.” -Brian Tracy

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I know I talk on and on about how I am getting back into distance running after a few injuries but it is because my brain is thinking about it constantly:)

I used to not even really think about my long run until the second I actually started to run them but now I get nervous about my upcoming long runs at least TWO DAYS in advance.

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My thoughts include:

What if I don’t finish?

What if something starts hurting?

What if I end up frozen in the gutter somewhere and never get to eat froyo again?

What it all boils down to is: WHAT IF I FAIL? The fear of failing.

We have been talking about overcoming our fears in one of the classes I teach and today we read this quote and it hit HARD! (Quotes from THIS article).

“Fear is a self-fulfilling prophesy that is guaranteed to produce an experience that matches the intensity of your feelings of fear.”

Uh….I guess I gotta stop fearing the long run otherwise I am just asking for The Law of Attraction to hunt me down and stop me from completeing my run.

The good news is….I am the one doing this to myself and therefore I am the one that can STOP IT!!!

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“Whether you think you can or you think you can’t- you are right.” -Henry Ford.

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“Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are your fears.”  -Rudyard Kipling

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So, here goes…at this moment I am changing my though process and working on developing new habits to get back to my old way of running….fearless.  (This time I will just be a little smarter about it…injury-wise:)

“Fear is simple to overcome once you understand exactly what it is and whit it does for you. What makes it tough?  All habits of thought are difficult to change ONLY because they are habits.  That’s it.  Nothing more.”

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What are YOU afraid of?

Do you get nervous about doing your long runs?

What is your run/workout this weekend?

16 miles that I CAN and WILL do successfully:)

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83 comments

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Love this topic of conquering fear! It’s such a nasty thing! But with God’s help we can truly overcome it… i too have been struggling with some fear issues in my life…

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Girl…I am hoping everything is okay and that you can conquer these fears in your life right now!

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Good luck on your long run!!! You are so smart mentally, we all know that you can push through anything. Have fun and enjoy beautiful utah fall!

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WOW, THANK YOU SO MUCH!

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Janae! You’re gonna do great this weekend on your 16-miler. ;-) You’ve identified all of your “training errors” (as my coach calls them) over the past few months, and now they are a thing of the past. So get out there and do it! You’re ready!

I don’t get nervous about my long runs because I am just working back into them after my injury. 10 on Sunday. I’m looking forward to it. My body feels ready.

I’m probably most afraid of screwing up my kids. GAH!!! The mom always gets blamed for things!!

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Thanks Allison. Love that you call them training errors..you nailed it. I am so happy your body feels ready to run! You are the best mom ever!

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Great post Janae!! I hate that feeling of fear about the LR. Since the marathon I am giving my running a complete makeover and instead of going out to run with expectations I go out running for me! I smile, I go slow, I enjoy the things around me and I no longer experience fear. It is like I had an epiphany or something. It is seriously amazing how much better we are when we eliminate pressure. So my advice is eliminate the pressure, relax, and just run. Run for fun!

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YOU ARE SO RIGHT….running for fun with a big ol’ smile sounds so much better:) Loved being with you today…you are incredible!

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Don’t worry about it girl, you will be great! And even if you don’t do as well as you’d like, what do you think you will do? Give up? No way! If there’s one thing I can tell about you (at least from the whole “I don’t know you in real life, I just stalk you on your blog” thing), it’s that you don’t give up, you persevere, and you are a strong person. Don’t let fear hold you back!

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THANKS KRISTIN! You are so right…I feel like we are real life friends too:) Thank you for your sweet words, they meant a lot!

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Super post!
I am afraid of long runs and reinjury too. I’m also due to run 16 miles and it’s the longest I’ve gone since March! Scared I am!
Good luck, girl. I’ll be sending good vibes!

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AHHH ME TOO!! Good luck and I will be thinking of you, we CAN do this!

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yay!!!!!!!!!!! 16 miles you are goin to do AMAZINGG!!!!!
ugh girl i totally hear you FEARING RE-INJURY! it totally haunts me
but i LOVE THIS POST! you are so right—if we fear we only hold ourselves back!
GOOD LUCK GIRL!!!

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I love this post! When I was coming back from injury last year I dreaded the long run even though they used to be my favorite. I too was fearful of failing! You will do great! Can’t wait to see you in nyc!!!

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You can do it! Here’s to an awesome long run for you!

If I start having a rough time on a long run, or at any time during a training cycle where I’m just tired and beat down, I remember this quote:

“When you are in the valley, keep your goal firmly in view and you will get the renewed energy to continue the climb.” –Denis Waitley

I also like:

“Worrying is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it gets you nowhere.” (not sure who that is that said it.)

I am recovering this weekend from my 100 mile Ultra last weekend. And I’m very pumped to have a weekend off. I’ll be cheering on my friends and providing the water/gatorade for Team in Training. Can’t stay totally away from running! :)

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WOW….best quotes ever!! I need to print those out! Thank you. You are my hero…can we do an ultra someday together?

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Yes. Ultra together – sounds perfect! I’d love that.

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Yes! Go kick butt on that 16-miler!!!! Wahoooo!!

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I totally understand how you are feeling!
I came back from an injury in April and almost every run, I have a fear of not completing it it! I am training so much smarter and listen to my body so much more, but I am still so afraid of getting injured again. As much as I hated it, I have learned so much because of the injury and am a much smarter runner. I also don’t ever take running for granted. I enjoy every step! I know that if I do get injured again, it is not the end of the world and I will “Get Back Up Again”!

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Yep, Amanda…you know exactly how I am feeling. You are so right about becoming a smarter runner. Thanks for comment…I loved it!

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DON’T BE AFRAID TO NOT FINISH. You aren’t racing anyone. Slow and steady wins the race. If you don’t do it this time – you can do it next time!!!!!

I’m afraid of running. (recovering from 2 stress fractures – just allowed to run 1 mile last week).

This weekend – lots of yoga. I have a big butt test next week and need all the mind clearing I can get :)

HAPPY FRIDAY! Can’t wait to hear how your long run went :)

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WAHOO, you are so right…SLOW DOWN and enjoy it:) I am so happy that you were able to do one mile last week….any pain? Enjoy your yoga and study hard, you are going to rock your test!

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GOOD luck! You’ll totally kick butt, no worries!

I am afraid of not being able to reach some goals I have….but I KNOW that as I keep going, those fears will fade and confidence will replace ’em. Have a great weekend!

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I am so excited that you’re up to that kind of mileage again!! And completely jealous at the same time. Now I’M injured and you’re getting all better. Hopefully I’ll be back in action like you! :)

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Girl. I am so sorry that you are injured. You were such a good cheerleader for Angela and I am so happy you still enjoyed your time in Chicago. You will get BACK and you will be better than ever!

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Something I love that I learned once, is that you can’t feel both FEAR and APPRECIATION at the same time. If you start to fear, think of how appreciative that you are able to run again.

And let’s be honest, what if you do fail? So what? That doesn’t mean you won’t be able to do it another time. It doesn’t mean you didn’t try. Part of the fear is in knowing you’re challenging yourself. It’s an important part of life and an important part of being an athlete.

One of my favorite quotes is, “I used to run with doubt, but now she can’t keep up.”

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AHHHH, that is the best quote ever….BRILLIANT!! Thank you so much Kara for your wise words….you helped big time!

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Great post on conquering fear! I’m often afraid to say my goals out loud, in case I fail. I’m trying to conquer my half marathon tomorrow..I have a time goal in mind and I really want to be able to pursue it. Here goes sub-2!

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Long runs are nerve wracking, even when you’re healthy! Good luck on your long run this weekend!

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Good luck, Janae! You are smarter than you were before your injuries. The fact you HAVE two days before your run to be nervous is itself a sign things have changed for you! You’re no longer running everyday for an hour or more. You have RECOVERY time. :) You’ll be fine!

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I am so freaked out about my run this weekend. It’s 20 miles and the last long run before my marathon in 3 weeks. I haven’t had stellar performances the past two weeks but I’ve tried to improve my preparation this week so I know I’m going to kill it.
You will do awesome on your run. You’ve learned to listen to your body and you are mentally prepared. Have fun and enjoy the ride.

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All you can do is try and see what happens :)

I get nervous about running since I had past hip and IT band pain that would stop me in my tracks if I attempted to run longer than 5 miles…I think it’s about time I got over my fear since my hip has been feeling great for the last year!

Good luck!!!! :)

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I don’t usually get nervous about long runs, but I definitely do for tempo and track workouts. It’s all about confidence!!

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You can do it :) I’m about to head to the hotel gym for some speed work intervals on the treadmill. So exciting… ;)

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Get it girl–you wont know until you try it! Have Bil-ster meet you a point–something to look forward too and support!

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I got soo nervous before my first marathon that I cried! But in my defense my running partner got mono and my brother brought me an ipod with no headphones..

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You’ll do great!! At least your fears are something reasonable and or rational…all I can really think of is snakes. I’m really, really terrified of them for no reason at all :)

Body pump and yoga are on the schedule for tomorrow, and then probably my last loooooong mountain bike ride of the season before the snow starts moving in. Should make for some good bruises/stories on Monday!

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This was exactly the post I needed! Thank you :)

My workouts this weekend.. I’m doing my first sprint tri tomorrow morning and I am planning on running 8-10 miles on Sunday morning (my first half marathon is in 2 weeks!)

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You’re going to do so well on your runs. I know that once you’ve been injured it’s hard to come back from, but we can’t let it own us. My plantar fasciitis still hurts a bit each morning, but as long as I warm up and cool down appropriately, I’m doing what I can to keep it at bay. We have to do what makes us happy otherwise, well, we’d be unhappy right. No one wants that!

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Aaaahhhh!!!! 16 miles!!! I’m so excited for you! I can understand why you are afraid, but don’t be. You’re ready. Just TAKE IT EASY.

I posted a quote about this on my blog just the other day:

In the words of William Shakespeare via Lady MacBeth: “We fail! Screw your COURAGE to the sticking place and we’ll not fail.”

Courage, my friend!!! Time to hunt down New York one mile at a time.

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You CAN do it & you WILL rock it. I know it!!!!!!!! Just think of how AWESOME you will feel when you are done. :D (& you could just think of eating Cafe Rio & fro yo while you run to help motivate you…that always works for me ;) )
XO

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Girl, as long as you lace up your shoes and get out the door, you won’t fail. Every step counts!

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LOVE your post today! Fear is such a powerful feeling. In my opinion (and everyone’s comments are AWESOME), I fear that if I fail at something (aka running)…then I am not perfect. I want to be perfect at running. But the real way of *becoming* perfect is to realize that we aren’t. And when we do…then we find so much more joy in our lives (and runs)! Remember: YOU CAN DO HARD THINGS!

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Wow!!! Your comment gave me goosebumps! You are so right! Thank you!

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You’re going to be great on your long run tomorrow!! I’m planning on biking and RUNNING (I got cleared by the Dr. today). Have a great weekend!

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Ahhhhhhhhhh congrats! I am so happy for you!!

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I’m doing 11 miles tomorrow and I’m nervous, but I’m glad my husband will be there with me. I figure worst case scenario, he could always run back and grab the car hahaha! ;)

Good luck on your run! I’m sure you’ll kill those 16 miles!! :)

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All the best girly!! Don’t be afraid :)

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One Comment. One quote.

Do.It.Afraid.

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Failure in any capacity is my big fear, too. I feel like it is most people’s, although that thought doesn’t really do much to ease my own trepidation!! OH! and bees! I am deathly terrified of bees, wasps, hornets— anything that flies and has a stinger!

Totally feel you on the fear of long runs. I have recurrent bursitis issues with my left hip which can be super painful. Although the soreness *usually* occurs post-run, I am always petrified it will flare up mid-run and leave me stranded in the middle of the AZ desert. (Knock on wood, I have a 15 miler tomorrow….) I have started doing Bikram yoga on my “off days” and it seems to help slightly?

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Ugh, sent before I was ready! Anyways– I love your outlook on getting back into long runs! No worries, you’ll kick butt tomorrow!!!!

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I’m afraid of long runs too. I try to just pretend they don’t exist until the day of. It seems to have worked so far. I’m still blocking the 26.2 miles I have to run tomorrow!

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I am so so excited for you and can’t wait to read all about it!!! I will be thinking about you!!! You are incredible!

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Good luck, Janae! You’re going to be awesome! It’s going to be a gorgeous day for a run, too!

I’m a pleaser- I’m afraid of disappointing people. :/ I try & keep that in perspective all the time. I always try to remember: Get rid of the guilt!

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you will be fine! I am the same way, I always go crazy thinking of everything that could go wrong, but I think that makes pushing through it and ending up on the other side even better. you’ll be awesome. you are awesome :D

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I always get nervous befre long runs! I didn’t used to, it’s a new thing since my own share of injuries! But I also feel like it helps me get psyched up :) I’m doing 16 on Sun. Good luck, you’ll do great!

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I was just talking about this with my running buddy! We determined that there are three types of fear when pushing your body: the fear of failing, the fear of pain, and the fear of having too much left over once your race/run is over. I think i tend towards the fear of failing which ends up sometimes killing my confidence so that i dot do as well as i know i can!
But you can definitely do this run. I hope you do great and enjoy every minute of it, tired muscles and all!! You’ll do awesome :)

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I was just thinking about how nervous I am for my 20 miler tomorrow: maybe I won’t be able to keep up with my friends, maybe my nagging foot pain will get worse, maybe I’ll get lost, etc. Your post was just what I needed to see. Now I am going to be confident and enjoy the long run. Staying positive is so necessary can be tough sometimes!
Good luck with your run…you will succeed!

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I get nervous about long runs all the time! I worry that I didn’t fuel enough before and I will get weak during the run, I worry I won’t finish, I worry I will get injured. It’s all there, but in the end we can do it!
You can do it Janae! I know it, you are a runner!

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love love love love love this post!! I am scared of a lot of things, I think a part of me is scared of being successful, and somehow I sabotage myself. (Seriously who needs therapy, I have blogs.) I am also scared of falling. Literally. On my face. It’s happened enough times it’s a legit fear.

I am doing a 5K tomorrow! I am excited! I found someone at work who wants to walk/run it with me. No pressure, just fun!

In random news: I finally got a salad from Cafe Rio (previously I was a tortilla soup gal). Oh. em. GEE! AMAZING.

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Good luck on your long run! I’m sure you will rock it, and I can’t wait to read all about it :)

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Ah, so much advice and so much positive energy coming your way… soak it up and just go out and enjoy yourself. Be conscious of your beautiful surroundings and the sunshine and the birds… and be happy for whatever comes your way.

Be ready and waiting and willing for the joy of the unexpected!

I wish you a great run!

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You CAN do it!!! Positive self-talk and trusting yourself will do wonders! Fear of failure is so normal but it is important to have the confidence in yourself to squash that fear! Also I am a sports psychologist in training so ANY time you need to vent and work on mental skills like overcoming that fear… you know who to call!!
Today I ran three miles woo! and I was scared about running my half this time! anyways you kick serious BOOTAY never forget that

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Don’t be nervous… you will rock your long run! GL! Can’t wait to read about it. :)

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I think that a vast majority of cases in which people hit the so called “wall” on long runs and in marathons is because they get psyched out… FEAR that its coming, and that fear becomes the actuality.

If you run without those internal limits, and with CONFIDENCE, then there is no wall.

Run strong – you’ll rock that long run tomorrow!

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Awesome quotes! I usually have to gear myself up for long runs or hard track workouts a couple days in advance. My workout this weekend is 12 miles. The good thing is that it’s finally cooling down here and we aren’t starting until 7! Hope your run goes well!

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Girl, you’ve got this!! :) It’s easy to fall into catastrophic thinking especially coming out of injury! Just remember, listen to your body, and you’ll be fine! :)

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I’ve been feeling the same way about my runs!! every time I head out I worry that it’s too much too soon, that I’ll be slow/out of shape etc etc…and even when I’m healthy I totally get a little antsy about my long runs, especially if its a distance I haven’t done in awhile. But it’s always mixed with excitement too! I think the best part about being a little nervous is that it makes completing the run feel like an even bigger accomplishment :)

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I ALWAYS get nervous about long runs. I have run seven marathons and it naver got any easier. I worry about fueling, weather, stomach upset, time (especially if running before work!) and pace. Twenty miles or more always chills my soul!

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Sometimes it helps to think: What happens if I don’t finish? It doesn’t seem so horrible if I think of it that way. I allow myself to consider the emotions I might have and then I accept that maybe it will happen (but probably not). It seems easier for me that way because I get long run fears!

Do you think it is stupid to do a 16 miler tomorrow if I did 15 Wednesday?

I realllly want to, but am afraid (ha! fear! But this time fear is good because it might prevent me from injury).

Anyway, Janae, no doubt in my mind you will kick some running butt. BUT even if you don’t….there is always next week!

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Janae, you’ve done it before and you can do it again! I have faith in you so don’t let me down :)! With my long runs, I majorly need to gear myself up at least for a day before. Half the battle is definitely mental for me.

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Gahhh you can do it!! Can’t wait to hear how it went! Are you doing it on the treadmill?? I’m coming back from an injury and am debating just doing treadmill (even for long runs) for awhile.

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Putting in all the hard work and then not having a good race. Failing (again) to meet my goals.

Long run this weekend of somewhere between 7 and 12 miles.

The Kidless Kronicles

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I try not to think about them at all…the numbers scare me…instead i create my virtual to do list for the week, month year etc…in my head while i run…all while i jam out to the best playlist possible… You can do it..you’re a pro girl!

xoxo from Trinidad

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So needed to read this!!! It’s 4:29am to be exact, can’t sleep and needed a little extra motivation for my half marathon today… I’ve been so nervous for today’s race (hills, dirt possibly mud, and more hills not my thing) but after reading your deep thoughts on the law of attraction (oh and if your looking for an amazing (short and sweet) book on this idea, checkout “The Secret”)…. Back on subject, All i have to say is, “Bring on those Hills”!!! Miss you Janaenae :-)

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This is JUST what I needed to read! I have a 22 mile run planned for tmrw and I get so worked up over it! Especially because I just found a new group to run with, I don’t want to give up, or go to slow, or FAIL!

Thanks for pointing out that we need to change our thought process and just think that we CAN do it! I’m going to think of all the training I’ve already put in and the 20 mile run I kicked in the butt last week!!!!

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Love those quotes!

It’s natural to be nervous about the possibility of losing something you love so much, and that brings you so much joy, after experiencing the pain of what it’s like to have running taken away from you by injury. The key, as you identified, is to not let that anxiety become overwhelming. Easier said than done – I am terrified before every single run that it will be my last!

xxx

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I get nervous before every run, even if its just a couple of miles. I was talking about it with a friend of mine from high school and she said its because of soccer (we used to play together). Getting yelled at during every work out just kind of made us wired to get nervous before working out.

My run tomorrow is half of yours. GOOD LUCK!!!

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Fear? Creepy crawly bugs. Seriously. Large spiders, millipedes. I get goosebumps.

I get a little nervous about long runs and end up not getting out there as early as I’d like. I feel like I have to really prepare for them…which clothes, fill the water bottle, what kind of gu, should i bring my phone, should i run with music, do i need sunglasses. etc. Stupid, because the details don’t matter THAT much.

Bike 16 miles with my husband today; planning to run ~12-13 tomorrow.

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Thanks for this post Janae! While my long runs aren’t nearly as long as yours, I feel myself becoming full of fear the few days before. I talked my concerns through with my running partner on Friday and we finished 11.3 yesterday. Just under 2 miles from our half (November 13!). Thanks for your great, inspirational, awesome blog!

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Regan!!! Congrats on your long run!!!! You are incredible! I am so excited for you to rock your half marathon.

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I get SO nervous for long runs! In fact, I tried running a 12 miler yesterday and about half a mile into it I knew immediately the 12 miles was NOT going to happen. My stomach was not happy with me, my legs were aching, it was all wrong. I was frustrated, but that’s part of running I guess. Every runner has their bad days, and the key is beating the mind game and getting back on the road the next day!

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Okay, after reading this post a couple of times I’m doing by best to follow it! I’m so fearful right now that my knee is starting to act up again, as I went for a 7 mile run today and it started to hurt in the last half mile. I’m trying not to fear that it will hurt again, because the fear will bring that result.

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