psychological hurdle

I've just been accepted to run my first 21K in October for Run to the Beat for the Meningitus Research Foundation (my sister had it) 

Im very active playing and coaching football twice a week for youth girls and adult, spinning twice a week and running between 3 and 6 miles with the occasional Park Run 5K, so my breathing recovery I am happy with but I am struggling to get my mind right image, I'll zone out on a run and then after about 3 miles my 'brain' starts telling me I can do this but the little devil on my shoulder is then telling me otherwise, making me suddenly aware on distance and any fatigue.image If I am on the treadmill in the gym I will have my headphones on (started downloading the music on Itunes by Peter Cannellis Run to the Beat podcasts which helps) but then I'll be aware of the person next to me and how much faster they are running ARGGHHHH!!

SO what I would like to know is how do you overcome the mental wall...other than giving yourself a good talking to...without worrying how well the other person next you on the run is doing!! - I know I can do this but I get distracted and worry about my performance compared to an established runner this just probably mental inexperience of training for this Half marathon.....did anyone else have slight ''panic'' or woes....I'll man-up soon!!image


  • mathschickmathschick ✭✭✭

    you can do it

    why not go and run outside where there isn't someone next to you to compare yourself to?

    I am a slow runner and tend to find myself pretty much at the back of the pack in races - it doesn't bother me. I know I am quicker than all those people that don't bother even getting off their bums and trying. It isn't about comparing yourself to others - it is about challenging yourself and seeing what you can do

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Stop measuring it in km for one thing...going in knowing you have "21" km will probably feel harder than thinking it's a mere "13" miles.

  • kaffeegkaffeeg ✭✭✭
    You can do it! Break it down into achievable chunks.

    Agree, run outside.

    Do some smaller races (5k, 10k's)

    You'll get there.

    Very exciting. Don't be nervous, but proud as you build up to it and achieve something you've been panicking about. Good luck!
  • Yes you can do it.

    Everyone has slight wobbles about how much they can manage, even "established" runners. I recommend the walk/run technique so you don't feel overwhelmed and having to walk is NOT cheating.

    I find a useful technique is to simple concentrate on your breathing, develop a mantra no matter how silly, something you can repeat internally to keep moving a song lyric or anything.

    You can play games when you're running too. Count the number of green shirts people running are wearing, or nike shoes. It's good for getting you through the miles.

  • Thank you for all your repliesimage.  I do most of my runs outside and maybe once a week hit the treadmill .  The mantra sounds like a plan and breaking the mileage up into to chunks will be better.  I used the term 21K as most runners I know only refer to km not miles arghhh.....I think that because I have always been a 'recreational' runner that suddenly having to do it for a reason with an aim has suddenly put a mental panic in my head but will take on all the advice given.

    Other than the 5k Saturday morning ParkRuns since writing this post this afternoon I have been asked if I want to do a 10K in September.


    Thank you for your encouragementimage 

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Rachael, do you hang around with a lot of Americans or europeans?! Most english quote in miles!

    Especially for race distances miles... image

  • Hi Steve, No just English,  I live in Cambridge  but most people are using the Km term instead of miles,  image 

    the park run is even measured in Km why do they do that lol ..

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    5k and 10k are standard distances, so they'd never be in miles.

    But half marathon, 5m, and 10m are always in miles.

    The best races are ones that combine 2 races, such as a 10k and a half marathon, because then you get 2 sets of distance markers as you go... 1k, 1mile, 2k etc

  • I use km too. I might call the event a half marathon or marathon, but to me they are 21km and 42km. My GPS watch is set to km. To me it is a lot easier.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Just seems odd to me, to split a race out even further, meaning you're taking km splits, when you're passing mile markers.

    Could get all too confusing when your're knackered late race image

    Is nice that the kms tick round so quickly in comparison tho!

  • Stevie G.

    Most common runs I do are 10k. It make sense to think of the half marathon as just over double that .

  • You can do it! I just ran my first half marathon a week ago after only really starting to up my running from January. I got up to 10 miles in training and was running 3-4 times a week. I found I was putting so much pressure on myself on training runs by constantly looking at my watch and thinking it was slow. I also got mad at myself when my mind was telling me 'this is the longest mile I've ever run'. But my half marathon (1hr56min) flew by. Running with others around you distracts your mind and the mile markers pass you by quicker than you think. Plus the feeling of what you have done afterwards is pretty amazing! Try not to be too hard on yourself and if you can try not to concentrate (for the time being) on your distance and plan to go out and run for 45 mins or an hour and build it up that way. It worked for me. Ignoring my watch sometimes on runs is always a nice surprise when you get home and see what you have done!
  • Don't worry about others! You don't know how long they've been runners, why they are running that day etc. If you continue to worry about other runners you'll just be dragged into running too fast and racing when you should be training. I've got my first half marathon in just under two weeks and what's helped me build up my weekly distance is not worrying too much about how quick I'm going (barring tempo runs). This was something I used to fret about but one long run done far too quickly and it's consequences re recovery time made me think again. Since then my recovery times have been a lot quicker and that's had really positive results as the legs are able to do a lot more training.

    Much prefer counting in kilometres. They come round quicker than miles and I always prefer to focus on how much I've done rather than what's left to run. 

    Also agree with Kafeeg in that doing some smaller races beforehand would be really useful.

    Good luck!

  • ahhh RunnerBean23 that was/is me - thank you - its helpful to know someone else went through the same and well done by the way on completing the half marathon... image

    neil jones 26 that was my problem a few months back running too fast and not concentrating on a tempo run and just pacing myself, thankfully with all the other activities i do my recovery has usually been pretty quick and even better now i have got my head around 'slowing down' - thats another problem my brain always in a hurry arghh haaimage. GoOOOod luck with your marathonimage

    So in the morning I shall head out on my run and take on board everything and see how I go!! Thank you everyone  image

  • Rachel, a half marathon isn't a huge jump if you're doing 6 miles now or in cardio terms to what you do at football or gym. You can do this.

    When you're playing and coaching football bet you're on your feet longer, maybe 2 hours or more,... That's half the battle there already.

    Stick a run & a spin class together occasionally and will built up nicely. Football can be close to a speed session, lots of changes of pace, sprints.

    As for the whole km/ mile debate, check what the race has for markers. It's going to be in miles in this country for a half so work to that.

    Do you run with a stop watch, or smartphone, or gps type watch? Set that to same markers so you're not confused on the day how long to go.

    As for the mental attitude, it helps huge amount being positive, you can do this.

    Did a marathon last week, made a list of positive & inspiring words/ phrases day before and simply refused to have any negative thoughts on the day.. On the day, I was literally unstoppable. Lots of the positive words came into my head too.

    Another way, Running for charity, I asked some sponsors to write down a word or sentence and stuck it on post it notes in my pocket. They like it, and helps you too.
  • Its not how many miles you have left to go ..but how far you have been in a half marathon WOW I have just run a mile..image ..not another 12 miles to go ...image Glass half full rather than empty...image

  • JFDI

    down with spam (not this thread)

  • Fit Running Cat thank you thats an idea I think I would like to use on the day,every bit helps and Warkie I like that!image.....


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