I'm a very mental runner.
I try really hard to let my thoughts wander while I am running. I find that if I focus too much on my breathing, my mechanics, what hurts, etc., then everything gets out of whack - all the pieces parts seem to take care of themselves much better if my brain stays out of it.
I'm also amazed at how much of a difference a little wind can make in my attitude. I realize that according to the laws of physics, a little wind in my face or at my back can't possibly offer as much resistance or assistance as I would swear it does when I'm running. But it does.
My wandering thoughts offer winds of their own. Negative thoughts, feelings of physical inadequacy, time constraints - wind gusting in my face, every step is a painful chore. Positive thoughts, loved ones, successes - wind at my back, blowing me home.
I went for a run yesterday - Coach Dan prescribed some fartlek training to strengthen me for the Crecent City Classic 10K coming up. I went in kind of dreading the run. I jogged slowly at first then started the fartleks. My mind started to wander, jumping between random thoughts and watching my time intervals. I thought about how much support I received during the competition to make the Evotri team, especially from my hometown, and how fortunate I am to be given this opportunity. I thought about my beautiful wife who loves me more than I could ever deserve. I thought about my 4 daughters who are bright, talented, and well-adjusted. I thought about my mother and my mother-in-law who take care of my needs before I even realize that I need something. I thought about my extended family of relatives and friends who would do anything for me at any time. I thought about my office staff who support me, and practice partners who treat me like a brother, and a son. I'm not sure what the prevailing wind was yesterday, but the mental winds were howling at my back.
I wish every workout could be so special.