Running Rituals I Avoid Like The Plague.
- The stretching ritual – Never got into it and I never will. I can’t do the pre race warmups either. Zumba to me is like having sex with the air. It’s inappropriate.
- The “my best is not good enough” ritual – The problem with giving 110% is that you ignore your mental health and risk either burnout or a catastrophic fucking breakdown. Anyone who asks you to give 110% is either shit at maths or a sadist. I give what I have on any day. Sometimes that’s 10% and that’s OK. Running for me is about improving my mental health. If I set some insane targets and fail, then my mental health suffers. Counterproductive.
- The hill repeat ritual – I once watched a man do hill repeats at 6am in the morning. He was behaving in the same way I was behaving in Dam Square in 2010 when a friend and I ate too many space cakes and started panicking up and down Warmoesstrat.
- The junk miles avoidance ritual – “EVERY MILE SHOULD HAVE A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR ELSE YOU’RE WASTING YOUR FUCKING TIME.” No. Every mile to me is valuable as it’s time spent outdoors relaxing and I can chip away at my issues I’ve come a long way in 2 years and it’s thanks to junk miles.
- The comparing myself to others ritual – Oh my god. I ruined myself with jealousy by comparing myself to everyone. I am nowhere near as competitive these days and it’s glorious. I’m trying to work at my own thing now by doing running trips and taking it easy. It felt like people were taking something away from me by being fast runners. How fucking insecure is that? People run for their own reasons. They put in the hard work and get the reward. There’s room for everyone to be successful on some level.
- The post race drinking ritual – After the Dublin marathon in 2015 I drank 2 cans of Kopparberg in a pub toilet. I then had 5 pints in a pub off Grafton Street and nearly had to get off the bus home as I desperately need a piss and there was no toilet. In Vegas it was obviously way worse. I’d celebrate finishing the marathon by drinking those huge cocktail jugs they sell in Fat Tuesday. It’s a fucking wonder I didn’t do serious damage to my kidneys.
- The getting really excited about a race ritual – Even if the race goes well it will still be a bit bleh. If I’m expecting fuck all then I won’t be disappointed.
- The taking running too seriously ritual – Up until recently I wouldn’t allow myself to stop on a run even to tie my laces as I perceived it to be ‘cheating’. I always ran at a minimum speed of 6mph. I’d become furious when I encountered slow walkers.
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