If you are a member of my facebook page, you probably already saw some photos I’ve posted from this morning’s Cancer Care Charity Fun Run. This is my second time running the 5K and the first time I did it alone without Alex motivating me on. I have to say it wasn’t easy considering I was having stomach cramps, but then running is all a mind game. Once you get in it, you just have to try and win over.
The mind game for me started the minute I woke up. I wasn’t feeling very well and my lazy me kept telling me to just sleep in and forgo it. So many reasons popped into my head in a matter of minutes. Luckily, the past year and a half the lazy me’s voice has been growing quieter and quieter as it had been losing its battles to the active me.
“Active” me jumped into attack the “lazy” me and it told me to just get my lazy bum off my bed, get ready and get to the park. It told me that when I was there, if I was still truly feeling ill, then I can just do a very slow jog or walk. (This was the active me’s way of getting me to the run, fully knowing that once I was there I would have to run.) I had to go. I could not just give in and let the “lazy” me win over after all this hard work.
And so I got myself into the car and got to the park. As the “active” me had already known, seeing all the people, the bustle and hustle of the Cancer care charity run made me forget everything else and just want to join in the fun.
The run started, I was amidst the crowd and then the adrenaline sets in. I see people running and I want to run. There are hundreds of people. I’m number 130. I start slowly, moving in and out of crowds, it feels like I’m playing a game. There are people of all different ages and races. There are families, there are children with their parents, there are brothers, sisters, there are couples, there are friends, there are colleagues and there are real active runners that just zoom past you like they had a turbo engine attached to them.
Lazy me comes back again like a broken record that keeps replaying certain parts. Lazy me wants to walk and just enjoy the nice cool breeze and the green green trees that line one of the few parks in Bangkok. It’s been a long time since I’ve been there.
Active me pushes the thought aside and I remember Alex’s trick to keep me running. The trick is to keep looking around and enjoy the scenery. I start noticing the water in the ponds, the old men that come out to sit and enjoy the park, the senior ladies who come out for a walk, the Chinese style pagoda and the children’s playground. Its a beautiful park especially in the morning light. I wonder why I don’t come here more often.
I then think of another’s colleague advice on putting her mind elsewhere. Focus it on other parts of the body. I move it from my head to my fingers, to my phone and then somehow it goes to my feet. It starts getting fun to change my pace and then alternate the way my feet hits the ground. For awhile, its fun and I feel I could go on for awhile.
I did, however, cave into lazy me and walk partly. However, for fear of walking too long, I’d just give myself a few landmarks ahead and once I get to it, I tell myself I have to run. Sometimes I use people as landmarks, sometimes its trees, or its some benches. It works. It stops me from taking too long a break.
My run takes a total of roughly 40 minutes and I can tell you nothing feels better than running through the finish line. I did it. I ran (with some walking) 5K. Its still not my favorite activity in the world, but its getting easier. It certainly felt easier than my last 5K run in November. And with time it should get easier and easier! One day I’ll do the 10K. Yes, I will.
What happens to your mind when you run? What tricks do you use to keep yourself running? Please share any tips or advices. Thank you!