Stuck in a Rut

1478968_10152472284654972_1987319375_nAs this soul-crushing winter drags on, I have found my motivation slipping to an all-time low.

I’m frustrated that I still can’t safely run outside with any regularity.

I’m frustrated that I have to wait for a treadmill and slog through every mile when I do opt for the gym.

I’m frustrated that I really have no idea what my pace is at this point.

I don’t know if I’m getting faster or slower.

I’ve been sick on and off for months, and I feel like a weakling when I skip a workout to sleep and try to get healthy.

I see my running friends in other locales, logging big miles, and my frustration grows.

And at the root of it all, I have fear. Fear that I won’t reach my goals. Fear that I’m not strong enough, not tough enough. Fear that I’ll never be able to drag myself out of this rut.

This happens to everyone, though. Logically, I know we all have our highs and lows. Logically, I know that even the most experienced and fastest runners in the world suffer through a slump. Logically, I know I’m doing my best and that I’ll find my way out of it sooner than later. But the mind and the heart are often at odds, and this is one of those times.

Today, the sun is shining and my sinus pain is waning. Maybe today will be the day I run myself out of this darkness and back into my happy place. — Mags


8 thoughts on “Stuck in a Rut

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  6. I feel your pain. I have a spring marathon in a week that I feel woefully under prepared to meet my “Plan A” goal on because the snow and ice and bad weather killed my training.

    Stick to it. You’ll find that you’re doing fine. The struggle is what makes it so much sweeter when the run comes easily. Have you signed up for any spring races or early summer runs? That’ll help, having a culminating goal. Running group? Workout friends? They’ll help pass the time and the slough too. Also, the treadmill can be a killer on motivation, believe me – I know! Are you doing any “speed work” on it? Basically, on a day you’re not feeling it, run easy for a half mile and then turn it up and run/sprint hard for about 30s…then rest. repeat as you like /feel good with; turn speed up as you like. This will really give you some strong motivation and, really!, there’s this great feeling of freedom and living when you run fast – even on a treadmill! Good luck.


    • Thanks for the encouragement. Yes, I’ve done/am doing all of these things, and some days they help, and some days they don’t. I have a 10K in a month, a half marathon at the end of May and I’m attempting to qualify for Boston at the Chicago Marathon in October. I’ve got a long season ahead of me, so I’m just trying to remember “this too shall pass” and in the eight months of training, it’ll just be a blip on the radar!


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