Posted on September 10, 2014
Building running confidence
One of my greatest challenges with running is building confidence. I am finding it especially true as I build back up post injury.
I remember back in 2011 I trained for the biggest race I’ve ever done, a metric century ride and a half marathon the following day. I trained 5 solid months injury free. A couple weeks before the big race I felt so anxious about it. Did I train hard enough? Did I throw down enough miles? Could I have done more?
One day I was telling Mike how nervous and unprepared I felt, though I had done all of the hard work. I just couldn’t figure out why I felt so apprehensive about something I trained so hard for. Mike being the super smart man he is, explained that I was lacking confidence.
Then it all clicked. Yeah, that’s it. So the last little bit of training I had left turned into confidence building. My fitness was already there, it was time to work on the mental part of training.
(Both pics above are throwbacks from the CA Classic in 2011)
I nailed the ride and race and to this day I have some of the best memories of training + the race. That sense of accomplishment can’t be beat.
Yesterday I got my hip/knee/ankle realigned at PT and went out for a run. I felt so good I wanted to throw that whole run/walk out the window and just run, but I didn’t. You wanna know the funny thing? I can actually do just that, but I am lacking confidence. I am so afraid of getting injured again, I would rather play it safe which slows down my progress. How dumb is that?
Then a good friend told me that building confidence is the hardest factor when coming back from an injury. He said, you have to face that challenge and overcome it.
Yes, I have very smart friends.
And again, it all clicked. I am reminded how much running and training is mental. I’m letting fear of another injury control my confidence and therefore hold me back from my goals of just running. I’m afraid of hurting myself again, but running cures fear. And this is another reason why I love it so much.
So, how does one build confidence?
Yah, that’s the hard part. I think it’s a matter of making a conscious effort to get the mind, body, and spirit to connect and work together. For example, yesterday I physically felt great running, but mentally I was worried about getting injured again so I played it safe instead of testing my limits a bit. Then there’s my spirit that says suck it up cupcake, you got this.
The body will give out long before the mind will, so you have to find a balance that works for you. And if you are injured, stop. Duh. I gotta start listening to the spirit, that chick is cool. She never wants to stop running, even when I’m 90……gosh, it’s like I’m growing up and stuff.
Maybe I’ll write a post about the mind-body-spirit connection, for running + life in general. I am finding it’s a huge thing for me. Especially dealing with the gut issues.
How do you build confidence when coming back from an injury or training?
What do you find is the most difficult part of running you face?
How do you overcome it?
Have you entered the Mizuno giveaway?