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Confronting the fear

eliz83

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Hi. My name is Eliz and I'm afraid to go fast. 

I'm your typical Goldilocks character. I like to challenge myself (I go on adventures through the woods and have no problem staying with strangers that I have never met before), but I also like to be comfortable. In my ideal world, the temperature would always be 72 degrees, except when I'm running outside, then it would be about 68 degrees. The perfect shoe has a wide toe and about 1/4 inch of room from where my longest toe ends and the front of the shoe. Dress shoes would look like stilettoes but feel like running shoes. My pillows would always be fluffed just right. MJ would never raise her voice again. I would never burn my tongue when taking a big gulp of coffee. 

I want to go fast. I want to be faster, mostly for time's sake. I dream of the day where my easy runs are at least 10 minute miles. But I'm afraid. I'm afraid of pain, I'm afraid that I won't be able to tell searing-giving-your-all 5K pain from legitimate, you should stop running cuz your hip is falling off pain. Perhaps that's the Goldilocks in me, perhaps I have a little paranoia from all those years I ran with an injury that no amount of rest would completely heal, perhaps I just have a really unrealistic expectation of pain. In any case, I've realized the past few years that I am simply afraid to go fast, and it's been hindering my development as a runner. 

That's where that Peloton app has been pretty helpful. The coaches (that's what I like to call them, I think their job title is 'instructor') have set paces they tell you to go, which naturally are based on normal ranges for runners. So, on a treadmill, a 4.5 is a power walk, 5.0 is a light jog, 6.0 is a light run, etc. As a good student, I like to do exactly what the coach is asking of me, so I end up going a lot faster than I would normally go. Most of the time, it works and I amaze myself at how well I'm doing and how fast I'm going! There was one run where I got under 9 mm pace (for just a little bit, not average), which normally would seem untouchable to me at the end of a workout. There are other times where I have to remind myself to be humble. 

It's exciting. I haven't tested the speed outside - too much snow, or melting snow turned ice or too cold of weather. I am looking forward to see how things work out, though, and I'm really looking forward to that 5K in April. My only hope: that I can be brave enough to go fast and smash that previous PR. 

 

Gratuitous engagement photo (by the great Morgan Miller Photography)

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You guys have had a crazy amount of snow up there!  You should try your speed on the track when it melts (also the loop around the downtown airport is always cleared - I had to run it when up there for work).

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Those were beautiful engagement pictures (for anyone who hasn't seen the rest).

You don't have to be fast to be a runner, but I freely admit it's much more fun.

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I like doing other work outs besides running like rowing or stair climbing because the numbers mean nothing. Some times we get too caught up in the with whatt's fast and what isn't. Doesn't really matter as long as we are getting out and having fun.

Beautiful picture.

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Run for you, and enjoy whatever that looks like. Otherwise you end up dreading what you once loved.

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"I would never burn my tongue when taking a big gulp of coffee."  <----yes, please!

Excited to see you be brave! 

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Great picture!

Just going to add that your fears are rational - not irrational - so try not to be too hard on yourself. You've been on a long, tough road to good health.

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