Today the music stopped, before I had even started running. I must remember to re-charge my phone, or my Internet flat runs out doh!
Anyhow … the music stopped, but I didn’t want to turn back. I usually run with music and know I must work on getting rid of it, so I took it as a sign and set off.
It was also a great opportunity to test the first point on Saulbee’s ultimate mental hacks for long runs list! What he suggests sounded doable, before I tested it!
His first mental hack is: “Write in your head” and it all seems to be around “the opening”. It reminds me of the game “I pack my back”. I thought I can do that or at least try.
I quickly got the opening: “The day the music stopped …” – that was the simple part …
… and the part I kept repeating and this is how it went on in my head:
“The day the music stopped … I started to hear the waves crushing” … Hey that sounds good! I can make this a thing! Maybe I can write about hearing birds? *Listen for birds … no birds just waves* … oh birds … it’s just so cool how everybody out there is hunting for cool objects on their runs, like the birds … I remember Paula’s post about a wild bird … oh no I’m loosing the plot! Let’s remember … what was the opening? Oh yeah …
“The day the music stopped … I started to listen to my steps my cadence improved”. OK wait a second … that isn’t true. I can’t write that as I won’t know that my cadence improved till after my run! So I just try and make it a reality now and don’t write that paragraph. I try to run at a higher cadence. I’m trying to do 3 steps per second, but now have no idea how long a second is. I try to count and realize: I’ve lost the plot! Back to …
“The day the music stopped .. I hear the waves crushing … and ” do I hear something else? Where are the usual dogs I meet on the beach? I look out for them, but no one is in sight. I realize that I’ve been running for quite a while and am not missing the music. I start again and add:
“The day the music stopped I realized I can run an ultra one day.” One of the things that had bugged me about running with others is the running without music … music is like my crutch. It was on my plan to try and run without music … but it was like the last point on a multiple page list on the very bottom! Realizing I can just do it and enjoy it is a big one for me. If I can do this, I can figure out the rest.
“The day the music stopped I became aware of the sea. I heard the waves crushing and sloshing against the sand. I became more aware of myself, my rhythm and the rhythm of the wind. I heard my footsteps and my breathing and it’s quiet. I’m surprised how quiet I can run, how normal this feels. The day the music stopped I realized I need a lot more mental training to not loose the plot.”