The Mental Running Game
I was reading Half of Jess' blog and it got me thinking. She said - "I also love running because it brews discipline".
Now, I've spoken on the connection between running and discipline here before, but wanted to dig a little bit deeper into it. All of what I write as a runner is from my own experience and may not be everyone's experience. As a non-runner, I didn't understand the people that ran everywhere. I had a friend in high school that would run 15 miles to school and sometimes back home after school. He was a running machine. I didn't understand it. I'm getting a better idea now that I am running more - Running creates discipline.
As I was replying to Jess' post, it made me think more about the mental aspect of running and not just the physical doing or the "how to". I believe that my body can do it and the more I do it - the more I confirm that my body can and will produce.
We exercise our bodies with the best form of workouts available. It may be P90X (got it tonight), 30 Day Shred (wife does this), Yoga, Pilates, Bootcamps, Crossfit, Insanity, Dance, Wii Fit, and you know all of the others. We use these forms of exercise to achieve the level of fitness that we approve acceptable for our body. They are mostly for our body only though. Doing the physical workouts is something that I love. I simply enjoy it. It's a developed form of mind though. It's rare that one loves a hard workout without ever having worked out before. What does this have to do with running?
With the gym workouts and dvd's - you have planned routines and you know what to expect. Running, however, is not always as reliable on what to expect. There are obstacles almost every time that I go running that I have to work through.
I like to think of running as the ability to exercise discipline. We do all of these exercises to get our bodies fit, but when we think of running - it's just putting your feet in front of each other right? The physical aspect of running sounds simple and can be simply explained, but running is definitely a mental thing. Many times we fail to be disciplined during the exercises and activities that are dependent on us to utilize follow through.
When you are running, you typically don't have a trainer telling you to pick up the pace. You don't typically have someone standing there making sure that you don't take the short cut. It is you, your mind, and the run. In my opinion - our bodies will do most of what our mind tells it to. You only have yourself to rely on when you are running. You are your best motivator, trainer, and #1 fan.
I know that my legs will get me there, but the question is if my mind will allow it to happen.
We stop ourselves so short of our potential because of the fear of pain, failure, and/or fear of further expectations. Many times we fail to even start because of those things. We are capable of succeeding when we push past the wall of mental restraints that we have built and held up for so long.
As I focus on running, because that is something I enjoy doing - my success is not determined by my time, the race, or personal bests. Success is however determined by whether I pushed past the shallow limits of what other people, society, or my mind tells me that I can't do, be, or overcome.
Running, in my opinion, is far more mental than physical. The running will help make you fit, but how I benefit most from it is that running exercises discipline.