Run Your Own Race
Happy New Year y’all! I trust the festive season was good to you and you’re raring to get going on whatever fitness challenge you’ve set yourself this year. January is like a virtual obstacle course where you have to dodge and weave through all the dieting and fitness fad madness. It’s a minefield out there and can be super confusing to figure out what’s best for you.
So, my fitness goals for this year? Well, nothing too crazy. I’ll be running London Marathon, teaching spin six times a week and just generally looking to continue enjoying being fit for the life I lead. I look forward to trying out new things (such as a pole dancing class this weekend – I’ll let you know how that goes!) and hopefully continuing to show fitness and the love of movement as a positive thing and not a chore.
The main message I think it’s important to get across at this time of year is to just find what works for you and do that. In other words: run your own race. In this age of Instagram fitness it can be hard to not feel overwhelmed, put off and discouraged when you see what everyone else is doing. All it takes is to see someone’s Nike+ update about their run, or their Facebook post about the PB they just smashed in the weight room, for you to question everything you’re doing (or not doing) with your training.
I say again amigos: Run your own race.
What other people are doing with their training is none of your business. Someone posting about their training should really illicit no other response from you than to congratulate them on how well they’re doing in their training. You need to take responsibility for yours. You know nothing about that Insta-celebrity’s behind-the-scenes struggles. Keep in mind, most people are guilty of only showing the good bits. Even if they’re training for the exact same event as you, the way they’re training for it is not necessarily how you should be.
You have to train the way that’s best for you.
How am I going to train for London Marathon? Well, I’m just going to run a lot. I’m not going to follow a formal training plan. I know the general gist of what it takes to make it across the finish line, I know how much mileage I need to put in, but mentally, I don’t want the stress of adhering to a strict marathon plan. I don’t care what time I do it in, I’m honestly just happy to have the ability to run and try to test my limits. The training process will be four months of my life. I’m busy, I work a lot, I have my fingers in a lot of pies (not literally, that ain’t gonna help my training), I want my marathon training to be fun and enjoyable. Naturally, there will be tough (horrible, awful) runs, but with everything else going on in my life, I just don’t want the prospect of London Marathon to be something that stresses me out.
So, when I’m online and see everyone logging those 20 mile runs and if I’m only up to 13 miles at that point, I won’t feel discouraged or stressed because I know this is all about me running my own race and doing it the best way for me.
So whether you’re a seasoned pro taking on something extra challenging this year, or you’re just starting out on your fitness journey, I encourage you to do it your way. Enjoy it, smile through it, experiment and figure out what’s best for you. That’s the only way to do it.
On that note, what are your fitness goals for this year?