The path to success, in any endeavor, if filled with obstacles.
The path that you’re on in the pursuit of your running goals is certainly no different.
With so many hurdles that we have to navigate, why do so many of us make our lives more difficult by placing more obstacles in our own way?
It makes no sense, yet my hunch is that almost all of us do it!
Maybe we should stop getting in our own way then, eh?
A Few Running Examples, Perhaps?
With regards to your running, how do you get in your own way?
You’ll have to take a little time to do some reflecting and analyzing on your own, but here are a few common examples to help you get started.
Neither Easy Nor Hard, Just Meh
Stop me this sounds familiar: either run easy or hard but avoid the meh.
Yeah, I know I talk about this a lot.
Some may say I talk about it too much.
But the reason I’m always harping on running easy most of the time is that it really is about the best thing you can do for your growth as a runner.
It may not be the flashiest training philosophy, but damn if it’s not effective!
If you don’t want to get on board the #runslowracefast bandwagon, that’s fine.
But recognize that you are making your path to reaching your goals more difficult if most of your runs are meh.
Overlooking the Little Things
Another thing you’ve heard me talk about before is the little things, and how they really aren’t as inconsequential as we might think.
Getting enough good sleep. Fueling your body well. Doing the work to stay strong and healthy.
The more consistent you are on these fronts, the more you’re clearing your path of self-imposed obstacles.
All. The. Races.
There is a segment of the running community that simply can’t get enough racing.
Some runners will regularly have races just about every single weekend for months straight!
I know this because I coach them.
Now, to be clear, I’m not anti-racing.
If racing is your thing, that’s cool.
But racing too often can get in your way by making it difficult to string together several weeks of progressive training because there is always another race to be preparing for.
In theory, racing a lot seems like it’s a good way to make progress.
In actuality? That often isn’t the case.
Shiny Objects and/or a Lack of Patience
Another way that we tend to get in our own way is by changing things up too often.
We hear a runner talk about how much better they are running since doing X, and so we drop everything and start doing X.
A few weeks later, we are questioning the choice since it hasn’t provided immediate results.
And before long, we are trying something else that is the new “secret” to our success.
The fact of the matter is that progress in our sport takes time.
Is there anything wrong with making some adjustments to what you’re doing along the way?
Is there a time and a place to completely overhaul an aspect of your training?
But on the flip side of this coin, it’s important to give the changes you make enough time to actually know if they are effective for you or not.
Setting the Wrong Goals
Look, I’m not going to try to say that you can’t/shouldn’t set whatever goals you want to set.
What I am saying is that some goals work better together than others.
If you have two goals that demand dramatically different means to achieve, it’s kind of hard to make progress on both of them simultaneously.
In some cases, progress toward one goal actually moves your further away from the other.
Is this a bad thing?
I mean, not necessarily.
But if you’re serious about nailing one of those goals, it is certainly making it a bit harder to be successful.
If you can line up your goals in such a way that progress on one front leads to progress on the other, that’s certainly going to make your life at least a little bit easier.
No Sense Making It More Difficult
For most of us, our goals aren’t exactly slam dunks.
Successfully reaching our goals requires a bit of work. A bit of stretching. A bit of pushing ourselves to our limits and beyond.
As such, I’m doing everything I can to avoid getting in my own way as I chase down my big running goals.
My advice to you? Try to stay out of your own way as much as you can.
Because the obstacles? There are going to be many that need to be overcome along the way.
No sense making it even more difficult by adding a few more unnecessary obstacles along the way.
How Often Do You End Up Getting in Your Own Way?
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