The 90/10 Rule

Sickness has prevailed over my running for the past few weeks.  Each time I attempted to step out the door, my body would scream at me in the worst way – by coughing uncontrollably.  Most might think sickness and injury are a runner’s worst nightmare, but that’s not true. Sometimes we need to be brought back down to reality and remember that our bodies need to be taken care of before training, workouts and racing can resume. And that can be a good time to boost our mental and emotional strength.  It’s often said,  running is 90% mental and 10% physical, and there’s a reason why.

I’ve been running for a long time.  Even though I ran cross country in high school and college, I was still nervous about running my first marathon two years after I graduated. But I finished. And I ran another. And another. And eight more after that. And I have learned something from each.  But the most important thing I learned is that confidence in your training and a positive attitude can change your entire race. The ability to visualize your strength is huge. But it takes time.  Time and training that only come with experience.  Too much confidence and you might push yourself to injury.  To little and you might not reach your goal.

I ran six marathons before I qualified to run the Boston Marathon, and I’ll always remember how I felt during that qualifying race. Confident. Strong. And optimistic.  I knew I could do it.

Me after my first marathon - Seattle - in 2002.

Me after my first marathon – Seattle – in 2002.

After having twins, it’s been a bit of a rough road getting back into distance running. My daily miles are the only time I get to myself – and I cherish them. And sometimes I have to sacrifice them because life gets in the way.  But in the end, they are always there waiting for me. And there will always be another race to train for.


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