Marathon Series: The Fear

Wednesday 14 October 2015 by

Wanstead Flats, London, Autumn, Running, Marathon training, #HoBFitness

Welcome back to week thirty seven of my Marathon Series, as I blog my way to a marathon – from beginner to 26.2 miles. This week, we’re talking about The Fear.

We’ve all had The Fear – whether at work or in our social lives, or at any point when it creeps up on you unawares. The Fear can be crippling: it stifles everything and all you can hear are the voices that are telling you that you can’t.

For me, The Fear is threefold…

Someone will laugh

If I leave the house, I’ll be catcalled and mocked. Since moving to London I’ve been catcalled more often than not on my runs, and it really knocks your confidence. I’m not pretty when I run – who is? – and The Fear tells me that I’m just making a fool of myself when I go for a run.

I’ll get injured

The other day, I tripped and fell. I cut my knees and hands, and knocked my pride. But there was a moment, as I assessed the damage, that I was convinced I had injured myself. As I spoke about last time, I am so close to the race that every tiny twinge is terrifying. How could I possibly go for a run if I’m just going to injure myself?

I won’t make it to the end

That’s it. I’ll make it all the way to race day, and then I’ll get halfway round the course and just… stop. All the training, all the pushing myself and mental preparation, and I won’t make it to the end. And I’ll have to admit that I couldn’t do it.

The problem with The Fear is that it just won’t be reasoned with. Nothing you do or say – nothing anyone else says – will make it stop. So how do you get past it? Are there tricks to avoiding The Fear? Sure there are. Unfortunately, it’s the one you already know: don’t give in.

When it comes to marathon training, don’t step aside from the plan, don’t give yourself excuses. Even if it feels like the worst run ever and even if you get catcalled, or you trip over your own foot, keep going. Never give in.

What gives you The Fear and how do you combat it?

Don’t forget to let me know how you’re getting on, using the hashtag #HoBFitness. And check back in a soon when we’re talking about the final hours!

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