What determines whether a run or workout is good or bad? The weather? What you ate that day? How far you went? How long you went? How fast you went? In my opinion, none of the above should make that determination. Instead, it is the way you think about your run that should determine if it is good or bad. I can remember many times that I felt disappointed as I finished my run, because I put too much pressure on myself. In fact just today, my run was tough, really tough. I was struggling to make it up the hills and was forced to slow down just to complete the run. If I was running with my watch, I am certain that I would have been very unhappy with the time, which would then have led to frustration and a sense of failure. However, since I made this critical change in my thinking, and began Running Without a Watch, I pushed these negative thoughts away and replaced them with a fresh and positive point of view.
I took a step back and realized why I went out to run in the first place. I am not a professional runner. My livelihood is not affected if it takes me 20 minutes or 30 minutes to run 3 miles. I run for me. I run because it feels good. I run because I want to lose weight and maintain good overall health. Instead of setting goals for increased speed and distance, I now aim for consistency. This point is especially important for new runners. Don’t focus on speed or time or distance. Just go out and run, bike, or walk. Strive for consistency, and most importantly, have fun!
Since shifting gears, and beginning Running Without a Watch, it is the most consistent I have been with exercising and eating right in years. 42 days, 6 weeks, 10lbs. I must be doing something right.