Running with my inner mean girl

Saturday I set out for my run. I’m recovering from a head cold but really wanted to get out of the house and get some endorphins flowing.

My goal: follow the instructions of my C210K app at my run forever pace. (I don’t often let myself run at this pace because it feels soooooo slow and I have this idea that it has to be ‘hard’ to be a good workout. On this day it was the self-compassionate choice after being sick.)

Easy peasy, right? Ugh. Not so much. Here’s basically what my brain did:

Seriously that's your run forever pace? You should run faster.

Hey everybody! Look at the fat girl trying to run.

Why even bother running? You could walk faster.

(car passes) They're laughing at you, ya know

These pants suck. They probably make your butt look disgusting.

I suck.

At some point I started noticing the mean girl voice. I’m so grateful I was able to notice- I walk around listening and believing the mean girl voice more often than I notice. She sounds a lot like MY voice. But here’s what happened when I started to notice.

I should quit.

(Just pay attention to your breathing)

I should run faster

(How’s your breathing?)

This is stupid.

(Ok just breathe)

Stop singing they'll hear you

(Breathe baby girl breathe)

{I was jamming to Katy Perry radio on Pandora and since I was at my run forever pace I was able to belt out ‘Call Me Maybe’ and other guilty pleasure songs}

I kept bringing it back to my breath. And then I started to notice other thoughts…

The sky is so gorgeous right now.

Oh that squirrel looks so happy, that's where it’s at right there!

This IS my run forever pace.

See there baby girl? You were made for this!

Easy does it.

I could run forever.

Keep breathing, you’re doing great!

The self-hate voice didn’t completely shut up, but as I focused on my breathing and all of the sensations that were happening I was able to notice but not believe- and even smile at- the mean girl. My run ended up being beautiful and fun and a sweaty wonderful amazing workout complete with a touch of runner’s high. So the lesson I learned from this workout is this- The mean girl (self hate) is there. By focusing on my breath I can have space to notice the ‘voice’ but not believe it. I have space to listen to MY voice. Way less suffering, way more joy.

My lesson was not over. After my run I got this excited, motivated burst of creative energy that basically said:

Share this! Write about it because you aren't alone! Go now, do it!

And then…

But you haven't even logged on to your blog in a gazillion years. Some "blogger" you are. Who are you to share anyway...People don’t want to hear about the whining in your brain. You aren’t a writer anyway… They’re all going to laugh at you… Mean comments… Internet trolls…You’re a fraud.

And in seconds I was back to:

I suck.

Which turned into:

Writing can wait. I have babies to feed, clothes to fold, dishes to wash, internet cat videos to watch, feeds to scroll…

Here I am on Tuesday, finally listening to the voice that’s been saying “Share this!” and noticing but not listening to that default mean girl voice that’s wanting me to be separate and apart from.

#running #mindfulness #breath #fitness #inspiration #innermeangirl

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