Do the Things. Run the Miles.

Recently I posted a picture to Instagram of a post-it I placed on my mirror a few months ago, with a phrase I’ve lived by for years. It reads,

“Do the things you don’t want to do, to do the things you do want to do”. I’ll go into what that means to me, but in the comments section I’d love to hear your thoughts on this phrase, how it relates to you (or doesn’t)!

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This has been on my mirror since I moved to Houston. I wanted to be more active in making my life what I wanted it to be, no longer relying on luck or chance for good things to happen.

I plan out my week on Sundays. My workouts are scheduled further in advance than that, but when and how I will fit them in gets fine-tuned on Sunday night. I also write down tasks I’d like to complete for the week, and prioritize them based on importance or necessity. Writing this blog is important to me. Getting an oil change is necessary, and so on. Going too far into what these tasks look like will either bore you or convince you I’m crazy. Just for fun I’ll pull one out from this week that’s at the bottom of the list: “Research Succulents”. I want plants and I have a tendency to kill them, so if I want some greenery in my home I’m going to have to learn a few things. If you are thinking “its really hard to kill a cactus”, well, I already have. My talents take many forms.

I started the above method at the beginning of 2017, and at first I sucked at it. I could get a few things done, but I’d often blow off items on my checklist to do something else (or worse, nothing at all). Mostly, though I was still busy, I was not productive, and I would get really frustrated with myself when a week ended and I knew I could have gotten more done. I stuck with my plan though, and I kept making the lists, and found that as weeks went by I could more easily focus, and focus for longer, on doing what I had already pin-pointed as important. I have a journal that I bought, and it guides and helps me keep track. You can find it here.

Yesterday I struggled to start my 8 mile run. I wavered back and forth. The plan had been to run to a local run club (2.8), do mileage with them (3), and finish off the mileage on the way home, walking the difference once I reached the 8 mile mark. At 3pm I was sure I was going. By 4pm I was fading and ready to cave. I took a quick 25 minute nap, just dozing, while my thoughts nagged at me. It wasn’t even the distance that really bothered me, it was the time. For no particular reason I was in a cranky mood with negative running rampant, and I didn’t want to be alone with just my brain for that long! In the end I realized I wasn’t going to change my attitude by skipping the run, so I just did the damn thing.

“How will I feel if I go to bed and I didn’t work on (insert task) today”? This question catches all the excuses that my motivational post-it doesn’t. I can procrastinate, and put most things off till tomorrow, without dire results. When I know I let opportunities or time windows go by, I get anxious. At some point, I got sick of feeling that way, and though my way of living now is pretty intense, I go to bed every night feeling confident in the direction that I’m heading.

 

IN OTHER NEWS:

I ran a last minute trail 5k that was part of the San Felipe Shootout with Trail Racing over Texas this past weekend. I signed up for it at 8pm the night before the race. It was a good move. The 5k was part of a larger event, the “Shootout”, which consisted of a 5k, followed by a 10k and a ½ marathon. Many talented runners showed up, and I had to work harder to keep up. I went out too fast, but was glad I did- I saw the 10k go out, and realized that if I had held back I would have gotten caught in a cluster-fJck in the first couple hundred meters! My pace in the second and third mile suffered because of the fast first – times were: 7:39/8:18/8:09. Not bad for me on trail, it was definitely the fastest I’ve run off road up till now, but I still need to work on getting my mile times both closer together and faster within a race.

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