Letting my lizard brain drive the bus

The thing about racing a 5K is that it’s terrifying for a control freak like me. If I feel like I’m in control, I’m probably being too conservative. If I feel comfortable at any point, I’m probably not going fast enough. When I got to the start line on Super Sunday to race the 5K instead of the much more approachable 5-miler, I was about to test whether I really had what it took to let go and not grab on again.

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Achieving autopilot

I settled on running as my physical activity of choice because there were no external barriers to doing it, and therefore I felt it was more likely than any other form of fitness-seeking to actually stick. No driving to the gym required, no equipment, no other people, just shoes and the outdoors. By the same token, I would have no one to blame but myself if I stopped doing it. I feared losing the will to continue as I grappled with the reality of being a total beginner as a runner. Physically, every run was a minute-by-minute struggle against the desire to STOP ALREADY. Mentally, I spent years fearing that that willpower would give way to laziness, to me the deadliest of the sins (did I read too much Ayn Rand in high school? Maybe!). 

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