Digging deep: a how-to guide

It is so hard to believe that we are heading into week 6 of training with Team Myles 2017. This group of women has gone from complete strangers to real team-mates, which is very obvious from the inside jokes and giggles every time we get together. :) They’ve all gotten stronger week-to-week at it is absolutely incredible to watch.

This week I had a conversation with a team mate that really took me back to this time last year while I was a member of Team Myles. For me, in the first month of training, it was fairly easy keep motivated to give it my all. The novelty of being on the team, taking advantage of all the wonderful perks that our sponsors have to offer, and budding friendships were enough, even though running was tough. However, around week 5 or 6 things took a turn. The intervals got harder, the training got tougher, and I started to see that I may have put life’s other commitments (spending time with family and friends, for instance) on the back-burner.

For me, when I started struggling with how hard this was, I realized that 6 or so weeks into any new challenge is usually the point at which I give up. I found myself really needing to check in with myself to remember why I wanted to do this, how lucky I was to be chosen as a member, and what it would really mean to me to be a healthier person and achieve my goal of running a 10k at the Scotiabank Blue Nose Marathon. I had to put myself back in the mindset that I was in pre-team myles in order to truly appreciate how far I’d come in such a short period of time, regardless of how hard running still felt.

Running is supposed to be hard. Running is still hard for me after running for over a year. Running is hard for the elite runners heading to Boston this month. The beauty in that is it is hard because running causes you to push yourself so that it’s hard on purpose. Its an opportunity to beat your personal best time, or run a distance you haven’t yet. It’s hard because you want it to be, because that’s how you’re going to get better and achieve your goals.

If you are finding that you are struggling, getting burnt out or checked out, I highly recommend answering these questions for yourself:

  • Why did you apply for Team Myles (or for readers not on Team Myles: Why did you start running)?
  • What does it mean to achieve your race day goal?

The answers to these questions give you something powerful, and that is called your WHY. This is used a lot in fitness motivation (I think I first heard of  it from Jillian Michaels, tbh). Your why is the reason you are here, and the reason you will keep going. Better yet, your why is the reason it is going to feel absolutely incredible to achieve your goal on race day.

Write down your why, study it, get emotional about it. Use it in those tough moments where you feel like you can’t keep running. Use it when all you want to do is sit on the couch but you have to get a run in. Use it to get yourself through all of the ups and downs. Most importantly, remember it while you’re crossing the finish line on race day.

So, what is your why?

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