I took up running a few months ago. Precisely in May 2015. For a long time I always wanted to run and imagined the freedom and the feeling of pushing my limits. But there was always a part of me which said this is impossible! I cannot do it, I am physically unfit to do any of this. I dreaded trying to run a kilometer as I had some false starts a few months before.
In a desperate search for inspiration I registered for B2run. It is 6.1 km long and that looked like a daunting task for me. Luckily I have a friend who has been running for a few years now and he offered to run with me. Having a running partner gave me quite a boost during my first few runs.
First evening we had decided to come back once I felt it was too much for me. This is where the effect of a running partner came in. There are a few things going here.
- You don’t want to be seen as an unfit and incapable idiot.
And a bit of chatting gets your mind of the fact that your brain is protesting to stop.
I realized that I was capable of running more that 1 km physically but mentally I just was not confident enough to push my limits.
The same week I was doing 6 kms non stop. It also made be a bit more confident about my physical abilities. Another unexpected effect (rather well known though) was that I felt really fresh and stress free. So now evening runs have become a norm for me.
This is when I decided to register for the Munich Stadtlauf Half Marathon. This was a bit bold and I was apprehensive. But after nearly 4 weeks of running coupled with three 15+ km weekend runs gave me enough confidence that I would be able to finish the Marathon. The aim was around 2.5 hours.
There were a few times in the last week when I felt that I might be overconfident (with 21 km). But on the day, I could complete the Marathon albeit in 2.75 hours.
Basically here is the point, sometimes we feel we are incapable of doing something. In reality it is our inability to push ourselves or the lack of desire to take some risks that keeps us back. For me running has given me a lot of self confidence and self belief.
If you want to inspire yourself check out this guy. I think he is amazing: Alastair Humphreys . I would love to imagine myself doing a fraction of what he does!