Compete Against Yourself.
For a while there, I was getting really competitive with my Nike+ friends. I would obsess daily over the “leaderboard.” Who has run more than me this week? Who has logged the most miles? And OMG, I’ve gotta add another mile to my run today so I can surpass that dude in weekly mileage!
What started out as something fun and motivating turned into me altering my own training and goals and schedule just to keep up with the Running Joneses. And that ain’t right.
Of course, it absolutely can be inspiring to see other people out there getting it done. Case in point: a couple weeks ago, I was getting ready to head off to the gym for another stupid treadmill workout when I saw a friend post her outdoor run to Facebook. So, I sucked it up and changed into my winter gear, and I was so glad I did.
But when it comes down to it, my training is mine all mine.
Running has its beneficial social aspects, but at its root, it is an individual sport. It’s a very personal thing. We are all running for different reasons. We have different goals, different races, different abilities — and comparing outselves to others often gets us nowhere.
When we get to the starting line, yes, we are surrounded by hundreds or thousands of other runners. Technically, we are racing against them. But we all know the real race is against ourselves.
Sometimes it’s hard to keep my competitive nature at bay. Like, really hard. So I’ve tried to alter my mindset. Now, I’m trying to compete with me and only me. And dammit, she’s a pretty fierce competitor. — Mags