Just Focus

13 Mar

Sounds simple enough, right? I realized it 4.25 miles into a 5 mile run.  Here’s a quickie run down of my 2nd post-marathon run for ya, then I must be off to bed. Up early for the gym tomorrow for my first double workout day – triceps, back, and abs in the morning followed by 5 more miles at night!

Mile 1: Immediately felt a bit “gimpy” when I started, but I had to force myself to control my speed, so that felt good. 10:04 – Stop and stretch calves and hamstrings.

Mile 2: This calf “thing” I have going on makes going downhill harder than flat land or uphill – you know this makes me sad Sad smile . Slowed down on the downhill to a pace that felt comfortable on the calf. 10:27 – Stopped and stretched again, mostly because I received a text (I normally silence my phone, but forgot) and wanted to check to make sure it wasn’t my mother.

Mile 3: I am pushing the pace again, so I have to force myself to slow down again.  Goal pace was 10:30 (or slower, if necessary). 10:28

Mile 4: 3.5 miles I realize I’m panting, and force myself to walk until I regain my breath, I was pushing way too hard. Once I regained control of my breathing I started running again. Now I’m having pain in my left foot and starting to get generally discouraged and pissed off. Running downhill now, but it hurts. 11:05

Mile 5: Walk from 4.1-4.25 to think and try to regain control of my own brain. Something “clicks” at 4.25 – I straightened up my body (I realized I was very tense and leaning forward), rolled my shoulders back, tucked my hips straight up under my body, and ran. I looked straight ahead, only glancing down on occasion to make sure I wasn’t going to trip or fall in a pothole. The best 3/4 of a mile I’ve run in a long time. Still a rough mile 12:48

Overall pace: 10:58. A lot slower than I care to run 5 miles, but I finished the miles and learned a lesson.

Don’t focus on the one thing that may be going wrong in your run – focus on the big picture: maintain posture and proper form, and the rest will come.

Post-run I stretched, foam rolled, and ate a big helping of some rice/bean/tomato concoction that I created. That along with some rolling pin action on the calf, and compression socks, I’m feeling pretty good right now.

Ready to tackle tomorrow’s 5-miler – focused.

How do you break yourself out of a rut in the middle of a run or workout?



11 Responses to “Just Focus”

  1. jobo March 14, 2012 at 8:20 am #

    This is how I have felt the last few runs I’ve had…and it’s making me gunshy about every next run ;/ What’s up with that? Not like I ran a marathon recently like you did! But you are right, focus, focus, focus and the rest will come. Great post. friend.

    • runcupcake March 14, 2012 at 9:01 am #

      Why are all your runs lately not good? 😦 I hope that clears up fast! Maybe legs are tired from all the time at the Barre? 😉

      P.S. I totally read gunshy as “gun-shee” and was like WTH is she talking about?! HAH!

  2. JessSutera March 14, 2012 at 8:51 am #

    Ohh I love the idea of focusing on the bigger picture — I totally needed to do that last night during my run, when I felt such struggle, despite the fact that I was flying along (hence the exertion induced nausea afterwards, I think!). I was so busy thinking about the struggle, that I was forgetting to see the bigger picture: I was out there on a gorgeous night, my legs were flying and I was keeping up pretty darn well despite being tired and in need of a rest day. The big picture can be so shifty sometimes, huh??

    • runcupcake March 14, 2012 at 9:00 am #

      It’s so hard when you have something that takes your focus away! I’m determined tonight’s run will be better and more focused!

  3. Wild Things Run Free March 14, 2012 at 10:54 am #

    Focusing on the bigger picture is HUGE! I try to do this when I’m struggling during a race (somehow it never works very well on my long runs though… hmm) Im a notorious mind wanderer, which sometimes screws with my runs because sometimes it wanders to the dark side & I convince myself I suck..

    Super glad you found your focus points! 🙂 so helpful

  4. lgsmash March 14, 2012 at 12:05 pm #

    I just had a really crappy, first post-surgery run attempt and struggled with exactly what you said – not focusing on the big picture. Yes, first run sucked but the big picture is that my knees didn’t hurt! For the first time in a year! Woo!

    As far as how I break out of a mid-run rut? I’m re-learning. I know that I did like to put on a song to zone out to and just lose myself to the run and the music.

  5. Heather@Just a Colorado Gal March 14, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

    It’s kind of ironic because if I want to break myself out of a slump, I need to NOT focus. I have a tendency to focus…and dwell…and the bad or the pain or whatever while I’m running, and if I can just stop focusing on it, everything works out for the better! I’ve actually started running with audiobooks for this reason– they allow me to zone out entirely 🙂

  6. runningwithsass March 14, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    hhmm good question, I don’t really know! I try not to think too hard about the actual run, that usually helps!

  7. Heather (Where's the Beach) March 14, 2012 at 3:05 pm #

    I hope your calf is ok. Sometimes mid-run I will do a few pick ups or even kickbutts (looks funny but you gotta do what you gotta do sometimes).

  8. cottercrunch March 14, 2012 at 8:31 pm #

    this just means tomororw is going to kick ass! rest that calf and sleep well. That run is behind you now.


  1. Fitness Friday 14 - March 16, 2012

    […] yesterday. I had a lot to do, my parents were coming…but, instead of giving up, I remembered Samantha’s post from Tuesday about refocusing. I completed the first half of the pyramid, then I hopped off, took […]

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