Saturday, July 6, 2013

The Color Run and My Thoughts on Running

I did the Color Run this morning! 

Here's what it looked like (I want to apologize in advance for interrupting this epic instavideo with a dance break and cat sounds):

Not featured in this video is my lovely friend Laura who my hubs, Daniel, and I ran alongside. She and I chatted about all of our hopes and dreams the whole way through, allowing me to forget for a moment the stitch in my side and the color in my teeth. Together we looked like this at the end of the race:

um NAILED IT, right?

By the way, if you've never heard of The Color Run before, it's a 5K run in which volunteers throw colorful powder on you at different stations along the way. It's SUPER fun, and there's a dance party at the end where they hand out a bunch of free swag. At the end of the day, though, it's really just a 5K with colors. Do not let the following awesome promotional video deceive you: 

According to this video, your entire life -- everything you've worked for -- has been leading up to this day. The Color Run is where you will break free from your insecurities. It's where you'll finally learn to be happy with yourself, and it's where, when you least expect it, you will find your one true love (and you will make out with him despite people throwing things at the two of you).

Unfortunately, none of these things happened to me today. Credit where credit is due though -- Color Run, I had a blast running you, and that's saying something because I am definitely not a runner.

I so badly want to be one though! I see how much people are impacted by it, and I really want to get in on that endorphin business people are always talking about. Sadly, I've got these short, little corgi legs that make me feel super unsuccessful. This is not a slight to my body type, by the way. I'm actually quite a fan of that whole situation. I just think my body was intended for something like Zumba or Prancercising.

I kind of feel like prancing is my typical mode of travel anyway.

Really though, my problem with running is all mental. My brain just doesn't stop. I am always impressed with the people who have the ability to shut their minds off. This is the most powerful quality I can imagine, and it's one that I definitely see in my husband. Sometimes I'll ask him, "Hey, what are you thinking about?" and he'll be like, "Nothing", to which I'll respond, "Okay yeah, but like, what kind of nothing?" To me, this question makes perfect sense because I am literally never thinking of nothing, but Daniel has the beautiful ability to just shut it all down and rest even when he's being active. For this reason, he could probably run a marathon tomorrow without a second thought.

For me, however, when I'm running, my brain is like: Oh God. I'm running. I. Am. Running. Don't screw this up, Christy. You. Can. Do. This. Oh no, I should have used the bathroom before I started. Whatever, I can do this. Wow, no, but wait, I sort of have to go to the restroom. Should I wait or go now? Where is the nearest restroom even if I wanted to go? Oh God, is there no restroom? Am I going to die if I don't use the restroom? Restroom restroom restroom. Also, how do I breathe? Do I breathe in through my mouth and out my nose? Or the other way around? Wait, have I even had a glass of water today? A lady pushing a stroller just passed me. That's not fair. She has a stroller to lean on. Awesome, a child just passed me. This is unnatural. I should probably stop so I can sign up for a zumba class.

As you can see, a lot of my thoughts center around where the nearest bathroom is and remembering how to breathe like a human. It's all kinds of ridiculous.

Anyway, as long as themed 5Ks exist and I keep living near Prospect Park, I probably won't ever fully give up on running. I'd like to be better at it though and I'd also like to finally, after years of searching, find that one exercise that I actually really enjoy doing. I'm fairly certain it will be a 90s Britney Spears dance class, but I've yet to find one.

Seriously though, how do I sign up for this class?
So I'm crowdsourcing this: What are some of your best tips as a runner? Also, what other workouts have you become obsessed with? 

I await your wisdom!


  1. I totally do the same thing when I'm running. My advice? Use the restroom before you leave and pack a water bottle with you. When I was running, I used the same playlist every day to run to(I called it Suzy's Running Mix). Then I could think about milestones and how I'd improved (most days...).
    You really just have to train your thoughts to be your personal trainer. I had a though I used over and over again, whenever anyone passed me: 'Slow and steady wins the race!'
    I tried to share it with my best friend during our first 5k together, and she reminded me that we WEREN'T winning... so I see how the thought is flawed, but it worked for me!

    I also set goals with myself, like: 'Just run to the next ___" Whether it was a song, a lamp post, a garbage can... and then I let myself walk in shorter increments as I kept going.

    Really, though, the best thing for me is the music. I can tune my thoughts to sing along, and it keeps me reasonably distracted. And also the water. If I forget something, I stress about it the entire time (mild self-diagnised OCD, here), and I can't focus on my run. I don't do as well, and I don't feel as good about it after I'm done.

    To summarize my entire NOVEL: Take care of the stresses before you go, and crank up the MUSIC! (But not so loud you can't hear traffic... or that bicycle that really wants you to get out of the way...) :)

    Good luck!

  2. I definitely agree with Katrina! Music is an absolute must for me when I run. I would also suggest a different way of training your brain to think when you run. Instead of trying to shut down your thoughts, redirect them toward something that puzzles you or causes you to go deep into detailed thought. Some of my greatest moments of clarity happen when I run. I think things like, "What do I want to write about next?" or, "What do I think about ex. 'theological question'?" or, "Is there in fact a pair of skinny jeans in this world I could actually pull off?" (The answer to that one, by the way, is no. Because whilst you may have perfect legs for prancing and skinny jean-wearing, mine seem to be built like a carthorse's, and never seem to fit into those stupid tiny little tubes of denim that look good on everyone else.)
    I digress. As a female introvert, it's near impossible to stop thinking, especially when you're physically tired. So don't! Think about something else. Use your natural gift of day-dreaming to your advantage.

  3. Oh my goodness, I'm the exact same way. I can't get my brain to SHUT UP. I want so desperately to enjoy running for all the same reasons (why haven't I ever felt the endorphins?!). But alas, I have to drag myself out of the house every. single. time. In the end, I basically just run so that I can still eat what I want. Have you noticed that marriage makes you gain weight? Haha.

    I have to set tiny goals for myself like "You can make it to the next telephone pole and then you can walk." That's the absolute only way I have ever been able to make it any distance. I can set longer goals and then be okay with it if I fail to reach it or I can feel AWESOME if I can make it past my goal.


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