I have one of those minds that spins like a top (Uhm… more like a wobbly top that is starting to slow down). My thoughts bounce around in my head like a gangster spraying bullets in a speakeasy. This is why I like to write. I need to get all of those juicy thoughts down on paper. With such a mind, monotonous activities tend to bore me. Chiefly among them can be running.
If you are not an active runner, not yet hooked on the runners “high”, how do you get over the hump of plain old boredom?
For us beginners after the first mile our muscles begin to complain. Our sides start to hurt and our breathing becomes labored. It is so easy to quit at this point isn’t it? This is especially true if you have a mind that is easily distracted like mine. So, how do you keep going?
I would love to hear from all the runners out there. How you are able to overcome not only the physical challenges but the mental challenges of your run? Here is what I do:
- I don’t listen to music. I focus instead on my thoughts and my surroundings.
- I yearn for peaceful places to run. Dodging traffic and pedestrians is a major distraction. The stress takes away the enjoyment of the experience.
- I take the time to try to solve problems. I keep my mind engaged in everything but the fact that I am running. How can I do better at work? What are the top things I need to do when I get back?
- Periodically I fully acknowledge the pain. I concentrate on listening to my body: my breathing, my footfalls, where I hurt. I try to tell myself that I am still in prime condition. “You got this!” I then ask myself what part of my body is going to be the first to quit?
- I pray. I enjoy getting out and running so much I feel I need to thank God for the beautiful day and for my ability to run. The fact that I am healthy AND have the time to get out and exercise is really something to be cherished. This is as good a time as any to commune with God.
What do you do to keep your busy mind distracted from all the pain you are bringing to your body? How do you keep from getting bored when running?
For more tips and tricks read: The Diet for a Busy Life by Phillip Gerard.