Forget the misses (not yet’s), celebrate every hit.

I don’t know how she does it, but Jen can always find the perfect ecard to brighten my day (thanks lady!).

A note on the title of this post: In some behavior analytic based teaching strategies, we call correct responses “hit” and incorrect one “misses” and “not yets”. Which I think, is a pretty positive and motivating way to look at all our own self-change projects. It’s just hard to remember to frame things that way when you feel frustrated.

This morning and then again during lunch today I was talking with two of my co-workers about the tendency people have of focusing on challenges and set-backs as opposed to success.

Often, in my professional experience, people focus on pitfalls to the exclusion of taking note of progress.

Sadly, people often give up on something because they don’t see the outcome goal after a very short time. Which of course, brings us all right back to square one, or even further than that from the goal.

This applies marathon training too. I was feeling really bad about my training on Sunday, and as a testament to that, I barely moved all day. (Re-activating my Netflix account was perhaps not a very good idea.)

Irrefutable math

I am trying to carefully build my mileage up to a 65 miles per week peak during this training cycle. 12 weeks to go. So I was annoyed with myself that I logged just 40.5 last week.

Now, with my Monday lense on I can see that even with an unplanned “step back” week, I am still making progress. And that is what I should be focused on, not the stupid 10-miler I skipped (3 times).

If you look at Portland (bottom) compared to Chicago (top) it’s a HUGE improvement. (also, I need to change the range of the vertical axis)

I chose to spend the whole day yesterday feeling bad for myself and crying over some silly Australian adolescent TV show. Why? Because I have been struggling to get in cross training and strength training sessions, and my weight keeps dancing around the same 3 pounds. Logical response, right?

Well, I should consider the following:

I have maintained my weight loss from the Boston 2012 training cycle (6 pounds!), I am consistently doing at least one strength session and one cross training session per week.

That’s progress!

Of course I am not closing in on my long-term goals! Silly woman! I have years to go!

Also a “hit” I should have been looking are was that I had a great long run on Saturday. I ran 18 miles on the Waterfall Glen trail with another Boston Bound veteran that I hadn’t run with before. She’s a lot more experienced than I am and has clocked some much faster races, but for a smart and effective long run we were a great match!

I haven’t been satisfied with any of my longs runs since my redemption marathon in May. Turns out that’s because I’ve been pressuring myself to run too fast.

I certainly did feel fatigued the last 2 miles on Saturday, but for the rest of it, things were great.

So, below is my new template for long runs.

Avg Pace
Summary 2:29:17.4 18.01 8:17
1 8:27.3 1.00 8:27
2 8:12.6 1.00 8:13
3 8:04.7 1.00 8:05
4 8:17.7 1.00 8:18
5 8:13.6 1.00 8:14
6 8:10.0 1.00 8:10
7 8:25.0 1.00 8:25
8 8:02.6 1.00 8:03
9 7:57.9 1.00 7:58
10 8:11.6 1.00 8:12
11 8:27.1 1.00 8:27
12 8:18.2 1.00 8:18
13 8:06.7 1.00 8:07
14 8:04.7 1.00 8:05
15 8:32.5 1.00 8:33
16 8:49.5 1.00 8:50
17 8:33.1 1.00 8:33
18 8:16.2 1.00 8:16
19 :06.3 0.01 7:20

I felt pretty well recovered only a few hours (and a big salad) post run.

This morning I started the week off with a  fresh (as in, moving on from the one I skipped last week) 10 mile run. Right in the first mile and until the end I had pain in my left lower shin. Weird. I could put my finger on the spot:

please excuse the ace bandage lines

I iced it, took some naproxen, and kept it wrapped all day at work…except of course to sent a Tweet asking for diagnostic support.

After work I went to the gym to wait out rush hour traffic. I kept the bandage one and was pain-free for a leg and core session.

I documented as much. I was totally smiling, and then I heard someone coming and panicked and took the photo really fast. It’s hilarious that I am totally embarrassed to get caught taking a picture of myself in the locker room, and then I go and post that picture on the internet.

Looking graceful

Anyway, it’s tender but much improved tonight. I haven’t been stretching at all the past few weeks, so I am sure that’s the culprit. Jorgie and I have a stretch date right now actually, so I am going to wrap this up! Phew!

Take home: give yourself credit for any and all improvements! Let go of the rest.



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