I was listening to the Jordan Harbinger Show the other day, and something that was mentioned on the show really stuck with me.
The discussion had nothing to do with running, but Jordan and his guest were talking about how quick people are to try something once and then give up because it was too hard or didn’t go the way they had planned.
They gave a metaphor of having an old cabin out in the woods that you only visit once a year. And every year when you get to the cabin, you have to turn the water on and let it run for a few minutes to flush out the pipes before the water will once again be clean and safe to use for drinking, cooking, and whatever.
And as I listened to the discussion, I kept coming back to that idea of letting the water run.
If you don’t give change a chance, your situation may never get better. Or easier. Or provide you the benefit you were seeking in the first place.
The DIY Peloton
A few weeks ago, I decided it was time to up my cross-training game.
I had done a little bit of research and heard good things about the Peloton system, but damn that thing is expensive!
Sorry, but two-thousand dollars for a spin bike with a build in iPad is currently not in my budget.
Of course, if you become a Patron of the show, perhaps I could afford the hoity-toity bike after all…
Spoiler alert: pretty sure I’ve got 90% of the Peloton for less than 25% of the cost.
Since the bike came in a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been on that thing almost every day.
And my legs have noticed the extra work.
When I start a run these days, let’s just say there isn’t a lot of pep in my step currently.
Maybe I’ve gone a little overboard with using the bike and taking classes. But I’m really enjoying it and I know that it’s going to pay off for me and my running down the road. Even if the legs aren’t too happy with me at the moment.
In a sense, I’m letting the water run.
Eventually, the time on the bike is going to improve my fitness and my leg strength.
But for the moment, my runs are a bit more difficult than I’d prefer.
Stick to It, It’ll Be Worth It
Running is nothing if not an exercise in patience.
We sign up for races that are several months away, and we put in weeks of training in hopes that things will go right on the day of the race.
So in that sense, we are very good at being patient, doing the training, and then seeing how it all shakes out on race day.
But when it comes to the little things, we tend to rush to judgment pretty quickly.
That’s fine. Maybe you’re the perfect runner who does all of the little things and is happy to be consistent even if the results aren’t instantaneous because you trust the process.
But for the rest of the running community, I’m sure most of us (yes, me too!) aren’t as resolute in our commitment to staying the course and allowing the benefits to reveal themselves.
We’ve stopped strength training because of the soreness we experienced after a few workouts.
We’ve given up on yoga, which we were only doing once a week, because we still can’t touch our toes.
We only spend seconds on the foam roller because it hurts so bad instead of toughing it out and breaking up the adhesions in our muscles.
You can substitute out any of these examples and replace them with dietary changes, trying to improve your sleeping habits, working on your mental game, and a whole host of other things that can be difficult at first but pay off if you stick with them.
We turn on the faucet, see the dirty water, and turn the tap back off.
But if we’d just turn the tap on and let it run for a few minutes, we’d be good to go…
If You’re Going to Make a Change, Commit to It
Anytime you’re adding a new variable to the equation, there is going to be an adjustment period.
If you don’t make it through that adjustment period and give your experiment time to play out, you’ll never know if it will help you or not.
When I decided to make some pretty serious dietary changes and go high fat low carb, I knew I wasn’t going to see the results I wanted in a day or a week or a month.
That’s why I committed to spending the entirety of 2018 eating minimal calories and doing the majority of my training runs below my MAF limit.
I didn’t want to jump to any conclusions without letting things play out.
And to be honest, at this point I’m not even sure that a year is enough time to see the full benefits of slowing down and eating minimal carbs.
But the key here is that I committed to the changes.
In the first few weeks, it was really tough. But eventually, I was able to start seeing some progress.
I’m not ready to make any bold declarations just yet. But let’s just say that I’m not counting down the days to 2019…
If you’re going to do some experimenting in your training, whether that’s something as dramatic as a dietary overhaul or as “little” as getting on the foam roller daily, you have to commit to it or you’d be better off not even trying something new to begin with.
How Patient are You When Waiting for Results After Making a Change?
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