My New Mantra

So maybe this is just a week of new things. Yesterday, a new goal: Keep It Simple, Stupid. Today, a new mantra. In fact, it might be my first real mantra.

Of course, I've repeated things to myself on runs before but each new set of words has lost its meaning in one or two runs. This one came to me a few long runs ago and it's gotten me through a couple of pretty crappy weeks of running. And, today, it got me through a really great five miles. That's right! They were great!!!

Now that I've hyped it up, you are probably thinking this must be some incredible deep, pithy, inspirational, awesome mantra.

Are you ready for this?

When my brain wants to quit, I repeat two questions over and over again:

"Legs okay? Lungs okay?"
"Legs okay? Lungs okay?"
"Legs okay? Lungs okay?"
"Legs okay? Lungs okay?"
"Legs okay? Lungs okay?"

Yeah, that's it. But it works perfectly for me. When my lazy brain is trying to convince me that it's time to give up, these words become a way to check in with whether my body actually needs a break. As I repeat it, the questions repeat with the rhythm of my footfalls and remind me that I can keep going. Eventually, they turn into statements of celebration:

"I am running and my legs are okay! My lungs are okay!"
"Legs? OKAY! Lungs? OKAY!"

If my legs are okay and my lungs are okay, there's no reason I shouldn't keep doing what I'm doing. The flipside of this is that if the answer to either of the questions is no, I have given myself complete permission to walk or even stop. Having that permission is great; finding that I don't need it is even better.

I wonder what will be new tomorrow...

Do you have a running mantra that works for you?
Do you ask specific questions to check in with your body when you're working out hard?
Post a Comment