This post is in partnership with BAND-AID® Brand. However, all opinions expressed are my own.
No matter how much you love running – when you’re training for a half marathon or full marathon there’s usually a point in at least one of your long runs when you want to quit. Not just kinda sorta call it a day and go home… No.
You want to QUIT forever with a capital Q and some cuss words thrown in for emphasis.
I’ve been there.
I’ve fallen on runs.
My headphones have died.
I got stung by a wasp (I got stung by a bee before too, but the wasp hurt A LOT more).
It’s been super HOT.
It’s been FREEZING.
As runners we face obstacles in form of weather / hills / injuries / motivation…
It’s part of the deal.
You never know what’s going to happen on race day. There might be hail or it could be 100 degrees … your best friend might surprise you at the finish line… the aid stations might run out of electrolyte drinks… you could wake up feeling like a million bucks and PR… or wake up that morning randomly sore…
It’s hard to predict what might happen on race day. So when you face challenges during training you have to decide how you want to deal with it. Use each obstacle as an opportunity to strengthen your mental game.
Don’t let it break you. This is your chance to face this problem, overcome it and increase your confidence before race day.
If you can keep going (without risk of injury or danger) you have the chance to persevere and build physical or mental confidence (or both).
When you’re training for a race, especially a distance you’ve never done before – there may be unexpected challenges or set-backs. I have a few stories like this and to be honest – I haven’t always been tough. But I’ve grown the most from the times when I’ve done something I thought I couldn’t.
I’m working with BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandages and NEOSPORIN® + Pain, Itch, Scar Ointment to share my #StickWithIt story. There’s one particular run where I pushed through and kept going that popped in my head as I was thinking about this…
One of the times I fell (yep, there’s been a lot) during a run I skinned my knee pretty bad. I was doing a 5-mile loop 3 times for a total of 15 miles. I was on the second loop when my shoe caught on something on the sidewalk and before I knew it I came crashing down hard in one big sweaty heap.
It was embarrassing. It hurt. It was scary.
But once I realized I was not seriously injured I got up, checked out my bloody knee and thought about what I wanted to do.
Well, I wanted to feel sorry for myself. But more than that I realized – I was 10 miles into a 15 mile run. If I quit now I wouldn’t be able to do another long run tomorrow so I’d miss my long run for this week.
And I knew that in addition to the scrape, I had a bruise that was slowly forming where I hit the ground.
So I had a choice –
I could stop there and cut my run short. I was near my car, and my knee and ego were bruised.
I could dust myself off and keep going. I could finish this run. I wasn’t seriously hurt. I would be fine to keep going another 5 miles before heading home to clean up my wounds.
I decided to stick with it and finish my run. I thought, “It already sucks that I fell, but it will be worse if I fell AND don’t finish.”
So I kept going. I hit 15 miles and then went home to clean up my scrapes and give myself some well-deserved rest (and plenty of ice cream for it’s amazing healing affects).
I was really proud of myself for finishing that run. I had an easy out. I could have totally justified stopping and going home. There have been times when I’ve cut runs short for similar reasons. But this time I pushed myself to keep going. And I’m glad I did.
When you face a roadblock during a run remember a few things:
Be smart – Keep your health and safety the main priority.
Be strong –Remember you are a runner. You are tough. You are training for a race!
Be brave – You got this. Have confidence in yourself. Choose the next step and move forward.