Self Doubt

My thoughts for Shamrock have drastically changed since the beginning of the year.  Until reflecting upon my performance at the Lake Effect half, I was gunning for a PR at Shamrock.

I was ready.

Yet realizing that there are only 3 weeks in between the races I don’t know if my body could recover quick enough.  It took me just over a week to recover for training.  After about a week I was able to hold similar paces with the same effort.  In order to improve, you must either train a little bit harder or have a better day.  I’m honestly not sure if I could have a better day than Lake Effect right now.  The course for Lake Effect was perfect, flat and fast, nice weather conditions and I was pretty pumped.  There was a slight wind but nothing to make me say OMG this wind is horrendous.


After thinking more realistically, I began to realize that my body might not be ready for a PR yet.   I think I need more time under my training belt.

Although thinking back, my fastest 3 half marathons (the Nike Women’s half 1:24.49, The Shamrock half 1:25.15 and the Lake Effect half 1:25.32) were all surprises to me.  I was never expecting to PR in any.  I have found my best races have always come when I have less expectations.  This leads me to the main point of the post.

I am a big self doubting runner.  I find myself wondering what I truly am capable of.  I wonder if my training has prepared me.  My mind is always questioning whether I am ready for a race or not. 

Is it because I’m not always confident in my abilities as a runner?  Maybe.

I have always lacked confidence as a runner.  There are very few races that I am 100% confident I am going to PR in.  Leading up to a bigger race, I never know what my body is truly capable of.  I wonder have I done enough training?  Have I done correct training?  I seem to always question myself and wonder how the race will go.  I think as runners or who humans we can all relate to questioning yourself at some point (whether workout related or not).

I try and remind myself of things that I’ve done and can’t do now.

I remind myself of the training runs I’ve done when I haven’t wanted too.

I remind myself of the previous races I have excelled at in this training cycle.

I remind myself that second guessing my abilities will not get me anywhere.

I remind myself that running more miles or harder miles are not going to positively affect the race. 

I guess my biggest motivation is this.  I remind myself that after a good or bad race, I am still the same person.  My life will go on and my family and friends will still love and care for me all the same.  I remind myself that running does not hold all the marbles in my life.

As I head back to Virginia today I have time to reflect on training and get ready for an exciting race.  Maybe it will be a PR, maybe not…If not I will regroup and continue training.  My life (or yours) is not built on a single moment.  You have many more moments and we have many more races.

Questions for you:

What do you do to build confidence? 

What is your next goal race?

While Shamrock is a big deal for me I also have two more half marathons in the Spring.