Friday, February 24, 2012

I've Hit a Wall and It Ain't Pretty

My name is Michelle and I'm a procrastinator.
<Hello Michelle>
 It's been two weeks since I last ran.

This sounds a lot better in my head than reading it and I don't want anyone to think I'm demeaning any 12-step program. But I am admitting that I've hit a major obstacle during my training. More like a virtually unscalable, 16 foot high, 8 foot in depth concrete wall that has been covered in electrical fence.

I could blame the weather but it hasn't really been that bad. I could blame the constant feeling of being tired but I'm a mother and a full-time employee so like that's ever going to change. I could blame Scott for not dragging my ass out with him but I did tell him not to harp on me so much. I could blame my schedule but I've been told that there are hours available, previous to my traditional wake-up time, that are presently sitting empty.

So there is no one to blame but myself.

Of course, this "blame thy self" becomes a vicious circle though. I don't run therefore I chastize and ridicule myself (you idiot, you missed a perfectly good night to run 5 kms); which makes me feel worse (you know you are going to gain weight); which demoralizes my intentions (why am I bothering to do this? you aren't an athlete so why pretend you are? You can't do this so quit now); which leads me to the next day (I promise I will run 5kms tomorrow and make it up to myself...yeah, right!). And so on and so forth until two weeks later and I have to write about it because I'm so fed up with myself.

I know all I need to do is get changed, put on my running shoes, plug in my mp3 player (I haven't bitten into the Apple Assault yet) and just do it. I know all that. So why am I taking this time to blog instead of taking this time to run?

I'm scared. Yup. Pretty simple and basic but I'm scared. Scared of failing. Scared of looking like an idiot. Scared of disappointing myself. I mean really, that's all procrastination is - the fear of moving forward not knowing if success or failure awaits you. Its a lot easier to wait something out and not fail than plow ahead and fall on your face. I'd rather self-loathe than embarrass myself.

I have a bad habit of comparing myself to others. I want to be as good as other runners I know now. I forget that even they had to start somewhere and build up distance, endurance, and speed. I simply expect that I can do what they can do in two or three weeks of training. Wait, I can't?

<Enter hand smacking back of head>

I have set some pretty hefty goals for myself for 2012. The fact is if I don't start back on my training path I'm never going to succeed at a 50 km trail race in September. Heck, I may not get through 42 km at Limberlost in July. And I've paid for all these races in advance. Not only that, but I told Scott that I want to be able to pace him during his last loops of the 100-mile races I am able to attend.

Fear of  Disappointment (in myself and potentially projected by others) = Procrastination. Sadly, a math equation I understand without extra help.

So back to the basics I go. I'm running to get fit. I'm running to show my boys that goals aren't about winning or losing but about attaining the dream. I'm running to prove to myself that I can do the things I never thought I could do. I'm running to be mentally strong. I'm running because it makes me feel so damn good when I finish.

It's time to face the wall and take a leap of faith. Here's hoping I don't get zapped.