Face Your Fear

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Short post for a Friday!

I don’t enjoy running alone. I’m not talking about running in a race and not staying with your friends who may be running it too. In that sense you’re alone, but you’re not because you’re surrounded by tons of other runners. I’m talking about doing training runs alone, especially longer ones.

I recently registered for the Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon and am following Hal Higdon’s Novice 1 training program. This weekend the plan says a long run of nine miles. That’s less than a half marathon and clearly a distance I’ve covered before. However, it seems a lot more daunting when you realize you’ll most likely have to go it alone.

Did I also mention it’s very cold? While Central Pa. has nothing on Canada in terms of temperature lows, we’re normally sitting in the 20s and 30s. I haven’t seen those numbers in weeks. On the bright side, tomorrow’s projected temperature is a balmy 26 with snow showers. They’re calling for a high of 21 on Sunday with snow again. Compared to what it’s been those are warm temperatures. I probably won’t even need to break out the ski gloves like I did the other night when it was only 11.

I just don’t enjoy running alone. Maybe it’s a mental thing where the idea of something longer than 3-4 miles seems too long or too far. I live in a safe area with plenty of options for places to run. I guess having someone with me keeps me motivated to keep going. Maybe it’s just nice to have someone to chat with. Who knows?

So while I was pondering my situation, I was scrolling through my Instagram feed and came across this post from the local studio where I do cycle classes.

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Maybe I should follow its advice, huh?

Author’s Note: Sometimes schedules with running buddies don’t align so you have to take on long runs on your own. My question is how do you keep yourself motivated to get through a long run on your own?

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6 thoughts on “Face Your Fear

  1. So running alone is the “fear”, not the cold, right? Then the only question for me would be, do you have somebody who would/could run this exercise with you? Because if you like running with somebody more, why would you make a run more miserable, just to face your “fear”.
    It only starts to be a problem, when you can´t run alone anymore, but that might be just my view on this …

    • Thanks for commenting, Tobi. Running alone is my focus, although I guess the word “fear” is a bit extreme. I just liked the graphic for what I was trying to say. To answer your question, I have lots of running buddies, but sometimes schedules just don’t align, you know? So it looks like at this point I’ll be heading out alone and getting past a mental barrier that I can’t run long distances without the company and motivation a buddy provides.

      P.S. I’d much rather run in this cold weather than the heat and humidity of the summer. I’m a snow bunny!

      • Living (and running) in Ireland now, I can relate to your preference of running in the cold rather than heat. I wonder when I will start to like running through the rain here 😉

      • I’m sure you’re doing this, but I’ve always loved running as a way to tour a new place. I used to a travel a great deal for work and would be on various university campuses. It was a neat way to see the campus. I can’t imagine the sites and sounds of Ireland, must be neat! Good luck with the rain…cold rain isn’t as much fun as a nice summer rain.

  2. I definitely like running with my friends, but I also enjoy those days when I am by myself. Good luck trying it out! btw, I’m also following one of Hal Higdon’s training programs for my first marathon. Good luck with yours!

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