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1) The last time you were injured, what was a ‘casualty’ of war?
I may or may not have bitten a few heads off.
2) If you’re injured right now, you’re allowed one vent sentence. Then follow it up with a positive affirmation that will get you through your injury.
3) For all you NOT injured, write a sentence on how you’re GRATEFUL for your ability to run and remind yourself never to take that for granted.
For every runner athlete who’s gone shopping for jeans and wound up wanting to punch someone in the face.
I can’t take sole credit for this one. The AWESOME quip that gave me the inspiration for this cartoon came from Sally Bergesen, founder of Oiselle, a kickbutt running apparel company. Yesterday a few of us were tweeting on the frustrations of trying to find jeans that FIT when you’re an athlete, muscle-clad, kickbutt female. Usually you wind up with some problems:
* The jeans WOULD fit in the waist but you can’t get them above your quads. Literally.can’t.raise.them.
* Go up to a size that doesn’t cause your quads to hulk-out but the waist is super saggy. We have six packs, not kegs.
* There’s also an issue with the cut of the butt. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but for whatever reason any size that fits my legs causes this funky pooch in the back; I think it’s because the waist/butt/quad ratio is off and you wind up with extra denim at the waist, so when you sit it’s like a sideways tepee.
I’ve not worn jeans for years…now, to be totally fair I work from home and literally live in running clothes. Like, live in them. #SweatsandtheCity
AAAAND, I will also argue that running clothes can be quite fashionable, I mean just take a gander at my awesome shirts:
and we ALL love Oiselle who are keeping us clothed from our rundies out to our hoodies.
Photo Credit: Oiselle
But that’s not the point. Runnerchicks DESERVER to be able to go to the store and find a pair of jeans that fit without winding up a mess of frustration and wanting to punch someone in the face.
Wise up, World. We are runners, we are women, we are STRONG…we have muscles. And we look d**n good with them.
1) What’s been an issue you’ve had with finding a pair of jeans, or any article of clothing that clearly didn’t account for your runner bod?
2) What is your ‘normal people’ fashion like?
3) What’s another vent you’d just like to get off your chest so you don’t punch someone in the face??
Runners can never, ever fear ‘failure’. In fact, failures are NOT a bad thing. To fail means that you set a high enough goal. You stepped outside your comfort zone, you DREAMED you could achieve something great.
Failures are often the most powerful learning tools. Bad race, horrendous workout…you have to not only experience them you have to FORCE yourself to get through them. Soak up the experience, actually feel how much that suckiness that was.
Take those sucky feelings and channel them into:
Confidence, you say? Yes, confidence.
A runner who pushes through when things really suck should be brimming with confidence. It’s way too easy to run an amazing workout when your legs feel like gold. To have a phenomenal race when it happens to be one of those ‘magic days’. Magic days are the exception, legs that feel like they’re running on clouds are the rarity.
To grit out a workout and keep your mind IN THE RACE when things are tough, that is mental toughness. The same goes for obstacles and challenges you didn’t expect, sudden curve balls that really test you. Get through them, keep moving forward. Those experiences, those trials, the hard times, even when you put in your best effort and the clock is brutally honest…THOSE are necessary to build a strong runner.
You survive knowing you still put in your best and never mentally gave up when things get tough, and that should give you the most confidence in the world. Those should make you think, “Look, I got through it and stayed tough when I felt like crap. Just imagine how well I’m going to run when my body and my legs feel GREAT.”
Redefine failure in your mind. After a bad workout or race, yes, you are allowed to be miffed, to be peeved. But channel all of that into a productive mindset. Rather than think as a defeatist, use the burning embers of anger as fuel for motivation and determination. Then look for any lessons you can learn from the race. (Did you go out too fast…again?? Wise up! haha)
Then COME BACK. The only time a failure SHOULD make you embarassed is if it’s the end of your road. You give up and stop your story right there.
I want you to now share with me YOUR epic fails turned epic wins. Share your stories about an obstacle you faced, overcame, and came out a stronger runner and person because of it. Tell me also about your epic fail of a race, and either tell me how you came back later to make it a ‘redemption race’ epic win…OR…if you just had this epic fail tell me how you’re going to use that in a way to reach an epic win.
You can blog about, post a picture, make some artage (you know how much I’d really love that!) and then tweet me @caitlinchock with the hashtag #epicfailWIN and a link to your epic fail win moment/story/picture/etc.
So, Runner Friends, embrace your failures because they make you stronger.
1) You know what to do, get to gather your epic fail win moment…I can’t wait to hear all about them! #epicfailWIN
That long run brought to you by dreams of PaNcAkeS!!! Or insert your favorite post-run food there. Actually, you can swap out the long run for a race. Scratch that you can preeeetty much just swap that out for any run. Any distance…any food. #runners #workforit #reward #bait ??
While us runners certainly can eat more than a football team, amongst those pancakes, Pop-Tarts, burgers, fries, milk shakes, etc…we DO know that in order to run our best we need to fuel our best.
The beautiful thing though, is that eating to PERFORM doesn’t mean you can’t have your cake and eat your apples too. It’s all about balance. There are some KEY elements that all runners in training should be mindful of:
getting enough and timing that intake * 30 Minute Recovery: eating protein and carbs within 30 minutes of finishing a run * Healthy Picks: insert your fruits, veggies, whole grains, quality carbs here * Vitamins and other nutrients: IRON is sooo important for runners and ensuring they get enough! * Hydration: it’s crucial runners ensure they drink enough fluids and more than just water, replacing those electrolytes too
But it’s ALL about balance, and even professional distance runners are allowed their cookies and burgers too. Hey, when you’re burning all dem calories you earn those treats!
1) What’s your ‘drool dream’ food while running?
2) How do you keep track of your protein intake and ensuring you get enough?
3) How do you track your fruits and veggies and make sure you’re getting enough?
Whether single or alone, you can always find love.
Okay, Happy Valentine’s Day…whether you find this a jank holiday or not probably has more to do with your relationship status than anything else. But we can all agree that the love between a runner and their legs is something sacred. To be cherished and adored, to be respected and never taken for granted.
Be you loving your legs in pairs or rocking solo, grab a chocolate heart and bite it’s flipping head off…you ran, you deserve it!!
[Hearts may not have a head, but you get the picture.]
1) Finish this sentence: I love my legs and today I will show them that love by…
Forcing them to run. They know they like it…bwahahaha.
2) How are you treating your legs right so they rebuild and repair?
3) Favorite chocolate treat?
Any and all. S’mores Pop-Tarts are always a choice I fully endorse!
When my legs are REALLY tired they can only manage thinking of my run in 1/4 mile increments. So I play this game in my head where I count to 4. One…two…three…four. Yay, we’re done!! Well, no, the cycle just starts again.
Don’t bag on the formula, it works; yesterday’s 9-miler was brought to you by the ‘count to four’ method. Oh us silly runners and our mind games.
You want another peek into my crazy? Well the the little game gets better because I don’t look at my Garmin during my easy runs. I’ve told you guys, easy runs should be EASY…and not to get sucked into getting overly competitive on our easy days, or mad at yourself if the times are slow. I’m not quite brave enough to go fully naked (aka watchless) so my compromise is I let the Garmin beep my miles but I don’t look at the splits.
So then I make this whole 1/4 thing into an even MORE fun guessing game. I picture myself on a track and then think, “Hmmm, I definitely think it’s been a lap. One. Now we’re getting close to two laps I bet. Two…etc.” So I try to predict the 4th beep and see how close I can get.
Yes, this whole, entire game is purely a distraction. It’s crazy, mostly senseless…but aren’t all of us runners just that??
Imagine a running world much different than our own.
Get up, lace up, and regardless of what’s actually on your feet…get running.
So lots of exciting things to share here!
My friend, and distance running’s #1 Fan Girl, Lynn Cox and I just launched Shoeprints Ink!! It’s a greeting card line devoted JUST FOR RUNNERS! Yea!! Go check out all the action and there will be more cards being continually added. Visit: Shoeprintsink.com
1) Speaking of shoes and spikes, what running shoes are you currently loving at the moment?
2) What kind of food related shoe concoctions would you toss into this comic remix?
3) Anxiety and all that jazz…what do you do when you are feeling stressed, anxious, nervous, etc.? What keeps you sane and balanced?
Well, besides what I already shared…can I state the obvious: #runforsanity
More Morning Running Inspiration
Get some race tips HERE
1) What’s got you motivated and inspired this morning?
2) What were your weekend running plans? Racers?
3) What’s your favorite running shirt this moment?
The wife of a friend of ours from high school recently lost her courageous battle with cancer. In her honor I post this piece that I was commissioned to create for a client who’s friend also died from cancer. Thank you, Mary E. for permission to share on my site. RIP Margo McCabe.
Dragonfly Pond, commissioned in the memory of Shawn Oligmeuller 2009.
I would like to think that I could come up with some Geo-Terra-forming-hyper-thoughts but can only come up with the belief that I am correct to feel immortal and know that even after I go to the next eternity, that itself will end, and “I” become some horrific to these “Now ” eyes, some specimen of thing unknowable to this consciousness, yet another “thing” that feels correct to it’s nature and has no thought of being not correct, that after an eternity of these formations and resurrections and deaths I will sink into the opposite sludge of nonexistence but after a time, that is not time, will again float to the surface *POP* out and start all over again.
Racing is a fierce sport. Take no prisoners. Competition.
Pain. fighting. lactic acid. MENTAL TOUGHNESS
Running is a test. Against yourself. Your competitors are there to PUSH you to your best. Competition is a gift. THEY will elevate you, take you places you didn’t think you could go. PUSH you past pain thresholds your mind told you you’d never go.
Racing is fierce. It’s better than a blood sport, it’s a game of wills. You are the pawn, the King, the Queen, and dictator. You control what the body puts out. Be fierce. Be strong.
Be a competitor.
You amped yet? Good luck to anyone and everyone racing this weekend…track season is always so freaking exciting!
NEVER fear your competition…they are there to help you. Read more…
Race day tips HERE
A little dark or serious today? More posts on MOTIVATION and CARTOONS
1) Finish these sentences: Race day is…
2) When I think of my competition, I…
3) I am in control of my race, I know I’ve put my best out there by…
With running, actions will ALWAYS speak louder than words. Though if we put some words to those actions…
[click to enlarge, but please contact me if you'd like prints! ]
In case you missed last Sunday’s Morning Running Inspiration
1) What are you grateful for this Sunday?
2) Take a minute and dedicate at least one mile of your run to a friend, person, or injured running NOT able to run today. Who are you running that mile for?
3) What is one line of text you’d add to this picture?
We welcome daring and insightful submissions of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, art and literary criticism and drama. We are especially interested in fabulist, interstitial and/or experimental prose. We love translations and writing from outside the US. We also love recovery projects (archival work that draws attention to writers who may have fallen off the map – query us beforehand!).
Eleven Eleven is a biannual journal of literature and art published through the MFA Writing program at California College of the Arts in San Francisco. We produce an online issue in the winter and a print issue in the summer. The aim of our publication is to provide a forum for risk and experimentation and to serve as an exchange between writers and artists. Recent work first published in Eleven Eleven has been featured in the Pushcart Prize Anthology and Best European Fiction, and has appeared in books that later went on to win the Pulitzer Prize, the Governor General's Award and the PEN Faulkner Award.
We’ll be reading submissions for issue 17 from January 15 through March 1, or until we hit 200 submissions, whichever comes first.
Sometimes a runner’s already won the race before the gun’s even goes off. Questions. Doubts. Insecurities. None of these belong at the starting line; starting line of a race or a workout. A runner needs confidence. NEEDS it… no amount of physical endurance, speed, or fitness can make up for it.
How one steps to the line is what separates the GAMERS from the runners who perform at about the level they do in workouts, and then harriers who self-implode.
Confidence is a tricky one, it’s a mental factor of running and training. Once shaken, a runner’s confidence can be quite difficult to fully restore. Injuries, off days, strings of bad races, all of these plant seeds of doubt. Doubt is like a monster that, once you feed it, it grows exponentially in size. It’s a voracious monster that will eat a runner whole. Step to the starting line enveloped in that ugly monster and you might as well not even wait for the gun to crack. You’re already a dead runner ‘running’.
By the time you step to the starting line, there is NOTHING you can change about the past. Stop any questions of, “Should I have done…?”, “Did I do enough…?”, etc. You can’t do it, so no use worrying about it.
Don’t let that scare you off, if you’ve got some doubts, that’s only natural. And if you’re currently fighting from falling into the pit with that ugly doubting monster, THERE IS still hope for you yet. It works two ways. You CAN restore your confidence. You CAN still step to the line a gamer. It just takes some work and shifting your thinking.
Usually doubts start from one of two places:
1) An Event: Events would be after injuries, poor performances, etc…it starts with a legitimate reason to question if your fitness is off and snowballs. Usually the first race or workouts back after an injury a runner naturally goes in with a little more trepidation. You need some solid performances under you belt to steamroll that confidence train back.
To help BOOST that train, remember that your talent and fitness never goes away. Your first race back may not be your PR, but trust in the process, trust in your dedication, and trust that you’re only going to improve from here.
2) Anxiety and Stress: Anxiety and stress tend to spike around pre-race time. I wrote whole posts HERE and HERE on how to use those nerves to your advantage. If you let too much pressure, internal and external, load you up, it’s like running with a weight vest. To help unload that pressure, usually it takes the runner looking within THEMSELVES and finding that passion and love for running that brought them to the sport. If they can get back the excitement and joy for just running, eventually the times, workouts, and races will get back on track.
1) Where do you draw your confidence from before a race?
2) How do you use a race day atmosphere to BOOST your performance compared to regular workouts?
3) Have you ever had a time when your confidence was shaken, how did you get it back?
I’m excited to share my first RUNNING book: “Effective Mental Strategy: Race better by out-thinking your brain”!!
Running hard hurts. In order to race and train your best you need to block out that pain and stay in an effective mindset.
This ebook will teach you strategies to refute those pain messages from your brain and refute that voice telling you to “Stop!” and “Slow down!” Also included are insights from professional distance runners sharing the tips THEY USE to stay mentally tough during workouts and races. These rocking runners, Sarah Brown, Sara Hall, and Jason Hartmann, your brain would go dizzy counting up all their accolades: World Championship Teams, Pan Am Gold, Marathon Titles, you name it!
I’ve chosen to use my cartoons as teaching tools to make the reading fun and engaging. I mean humor DOES make everything better and, after all, while training and racing does require an amount of seriousness, running IS fun. And running personal records are even MORE fun!
This ‘instructional comic book’ is written BY a runner; because who better to poke fun at our crazy quirks and thoughts than a runner herself?!!
BUY this awesome ebook in PDF form here! — $9.99
Sneak peek of what’s inside!
This running ebook will also be offered in a Kindle edition at the Amazon store shortly too!
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