Start Now. And Fall Down. And Keep Going.
Possibly one of the greatest joys of being a child was having a vast expanse of hobbies, activities, sports, and experiences to explore. What were you a natural at? What came easier than other things? What was so dreadfully difficult that you quit? What was something difficult that you preserved through?
The thing is-we still have this power as adults. We have the power to try new things, push ourselves, fall down, and try again. Now-chances are, if you are in the functional fitness space, you’ve already got a bit more grit than most. You a) Were a bad ass by walking into that first gym however many days, weeks, or years ago and b) You actually came back after that first workout. But what now?
Although our brand of fitness is built on the principle of constant variance-of conditioning our body to respond quickly, and adeptly to the unknown, how much ‘unknown’ are you incorporating into your life?
The Unknown & Running
For the sake of this piece, let’s talk about running. The number of times we hear on a daily basis in the gym “I’m not a good runner. Can I row instead? The run is what slowed me down. I just hate running” Pause. Humans were built to run. In the most watered down, non scientific way of saying this, we are natural born endurance athletes. We are not natural born FRAN-ers (new term I just made up). Yet why is it that we approach Fran with a can-do attitude and a 400m run in a workout with an** oh shit** attitude.
If you have read this far (thank you!!), my advice to you is to start now. Fail. And Keep going. Want to work on your running? Use our 4 week training plan as a guide.
I know. Not any athlete's favorite thing to hear. Lower your expectations. This is new! You aren’t going to have mile times that will qualify for Boston after the first few weeks or months. Accept that. Accept where you are, and continue to move forward.
Change your attitude in class. Don’t be that guy that fires complaints before the run in the workout. Change the narrative and internally (or externally is even better!) say- “I got this. The run won’t be the worst part.” And if you hear others in class throwing out negative energy-step in and SHUT IT DOWN!
Have a mantra. I know, I know, cheesy but hear me out! How can you expect to have a good time working out if the voice in your head is cycling through “This hurts so bad,” “Ugh, only X miles in,” “I can’t do this,” “I’m just not a good runner.” etc, etc, Let me just say, if I had a friend talk to me like that while on a run I would never run with them again. When you feel those thoughts coming in, push them out and replace them with your mantra.
Have fun. Seriously, why do we all continue to lift heavier, suffer longer, and show up day after day? Because we enjoy what we’re doing. Figure out a way to enjoy running-whether it’s through the trails you pick, the music you play or the company you bring along (dogs make everything better!).
Some Favorite Mantras...
“Strong, Steady, Fierce.”
“I never quit.”
“Attack” (My personal favorite for conquering steep hills).
ALSO: This Applies EVERYWHERE in Life
This formula can be applied any and everywhere in life. Start that new project, that new hobby, go on that trip, put yourself out there. Accept where you are, know you’re learning, know you’ll fail, but know you will sure as hell get back up again.
Now, I have to just tell you-go get out and run.
Laura (LD) is on the Marketing & Design Team at NCFIT. She's an endurance athlete focused on trail running and mountaineering.
When she's not training, you can find her drinking too much espresso and capturing the world around her on 35mm film.