Its rare to talk to a runner who claims that training is going well and that they are right were they expected to be in terms of fitness. Instead, we always mention that we’re getting in some miles, but not as many as we’d like. Or the speed is coming but we are still lacking the extra gear. Oftentimes we get up in the morning, complete our workout as prescribed, and then spend the afternoon wondering why our legs are a bit tired?
Recently, my wife got up early, covered herself in layer after layer of clothing, and proceeded to complete her longest run since before baby number 2, a span of at least 13 months. She has been doing several 3-4 mile runs per week, but this day she completed a 6 miler.
This an an accomplishment, and should be viewed as a positive step in her preparation for a fall marathon. Instead, she spent the afternoon trying to figure out why her legs felt so much more tired then normal.
“Don’t sell yourself short babe,” you just completed your longest run post baby, in cold conditions, which only adds to the fatigue. “I’m proud of you and you should be proud too.”
Grudgingly, she came to accept my viewpoint.
I see and hear people belittle their own accomplishments in all area’s of life. We downplay our workouts depending on our audience. We fail to take credit for a great idea at work, crediting luck, helpful clients, or a really good group of students. We hide our generosity, fearing drawing attention to ourselves, when we could in fact be inspiring others with a positive story.
For me, especially in regards to my training, I want to focus on the positive; look at the big picture of my training cycle and honestly verbalize my present fitness. For January, I’m doing great. Most days, I’m getting in two workouts and between 60 -90 minutes total. My volume is building, my legs are not trashed. This is good.
Sure I’m not nearly as fast as I’d like to be, my top gears are completely missing, and my ability to hold a pace at threshold is rather short. But that is all okay, its January, I have no races lined up, and my goal race isn’t until May 20th.
Trust the process.
Focus on your present accomplishments, and evaluate yourself based on your present state, not on your peak potential.
Find the joy and success in the training knowing that your peak performance will come, if allowed time to develop.