Fearing the 5k

As I started my day and thought about my evening run, I felt it.  Deep down inside me.  What is that? I’m not sick, not hungry and I felt fine just minutes ago.  Wait!  I can’t be nervous can I?  Oh boy!  That is not good!!  I hate being nervous!  It will chew me up and spit me out!
Nervous for me always turns into fear which turns into self doubt which turns into me not wanting to run.  And well I don’t perform as well as I can.  What would bring on this feeling?  Nope not thinking about Detroit, I know I can run the half and finish just fine.  This feeling is coming from a 5k!!!  Yep a freakin’ 5k!!  I haven’t ran a 5k since July before I sprained my ankle.  Can I run one this Saturday??   

Quick side note: I decided to sprain my ankle on July 30th…2 days before my Zooma race in Chicago!  I will just say I didn’t what I should have and ran Zooma anyway.  PR’d too!!  However, this did my ankle no good and it is still week so speed scares me!
Feet are ugly, but swollen ankles are worse!
With that said, I want to do well.  I want to run fast and I want to PR!  All of these are probable.  I am trained, conditioned and running great considered I just started again 4 1/2 months ago.  I still can’t get over the thought of me holding my standard too high.  Am I really capable of the number I want to put up?  I am just not sure!!  I know I should be but will my mental game be there?  Or instead will I doubt it and give up when the run gets tough? 
My adult PR as I like to call it (since I just started running for the first time since high school) was set back in mid-July at the Athens 5k (1st in AG too).  At that point I ran the whole race but really struggled once I hit mile 2 with not walking.  I went out too fast considering my fitness level at the time but managed to keep going.  What if I can’t hang on this weekend?  What if I fail?
I have to kick these thoughts and start pulling out the positive affirmations!
And if you didn’t see all my pictures from Twitter or Instagram, I did get an awesome delivery in the mail also!!!  This helped stay positive a little!!
Pro compression never fails me!
Freaking out just wanting to take my mind off of a race, I decide it was time to run!  Running fixes everything right?  Even fears of running are fixed by running?  In this case they were and I couldn’t be happier about it.
I reached out to the Running Club I am a part of to see who wanted to run a slow 3-5 miles.  Not wanting to do anything fast since I am going to try to do that Saturday and mileage needing to be low I figured that would be perfect.  A running friend Terry said he would meet up with me and we could hit a local 4.5 mile loop.  Once we met we did a few minutes of chatting and took off.  When we started I told him that I was slow so be prepared.  He didn’t mind, he is faster than me but was letting me hold the pace.  I ran at a comfortable level and tried to pay no attention to my Garmin (that is really hard!). 
After couple minutes I failed to ignore it and looked at our pace….9:10???  That’s faster than I want to go!!  Oh no!  The last time I raced a 10k I was only slightly faster than that!  How am I going to go all 4.5 miles we planned!?!?!  I kept running at a comfortable pace and trusted my training.  Mile 1-8:52, I felt great and didn’t feel like I was working for this at all.  Mile 2: 8:58!  OMG, this is a lot easier than I think it should be!  The next 2.6 miles flew by.  I kept my eyes off my Garmin and was pleasantly surprised when we finished.
Seriously?  My last 10k was slower than that!!
Apparently this is where I once again realize I am not giving myself enough credit.  I have worked hard and am better than I was before.  Progress is being made, why can’t I see that to start with??  The best part was I didn’t feel like I was working hard!  Terry and I talked the entire time and I still had a lot left when we were done.  I couldn’t have been more please with this run.  Felt great, weather was perfect, and I finished far above my expectations!
I think a lot of this has to do with running with a friend as well.  It has been a long time since I have went out and ran with someone.  When I was coaching I had to do a lot of my runs later after everyone I knew already was done.  I stayed out of my own head for the most part and just let my body do the work.  Love when that happens.

Best part of my day was finding this picture that my 6 year old artist painted.  She must love Autumn!
How do you deal with self doubt?
Do you prefer running with a friend/group or alone?
What’s your favorite season?


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