Ah running anxiety. I’ve felt lately that I am obsessing over running certain mile splits, putting on the absolute perfect song while running, and completing the perfect run pace each and every time. While it’s rewarding and satisfying to reach certain milestones, it can really take the fun out of running. I’m trying to use the following three techniques over the next few weeks to lessen this anxiety.
There’s two options for doing this. Personally, I love using the Nikeplus app for running, and it offers an option to lock your screen. By putting my iphone on an armband (at an angle I can’t see), I will only be able to hear my mile splits after they are completed, and take in the scenery and enjoy my run. As another option, you can lock your phone itself (under settings)
2. Running without any gadgets.
This one is particularly hard for many of us to do (myself included), but can really help you fall in love with running without expectations or stringent mile splits/paces/etc. It’s so simple to do, just go out and run without any music, phones, Garmin watches, etc. I did this last week, and while freaking out out for the first mile (what’s my pace? Am I running too slow? Is it always this loud on this street?) I found it really freeing and noticed more details about the scenery around me.
3. Have a mantra
The word mantra can bring to mind new age-y folk singers and herbal teas, but this technique totally works. Especially during a race, it really helps to have a phrase or word that you can say to yourself (whether out loud or in your head is up to you) to keep going and ignore the doubts in your head. For my last 25K I went with this phrase: “I am strong, I am capable, and I will finish strong”.
What techniques do you use to overcome anxiety or doubts while running?