In a Funk
by Anne Stancil
It’s hard for me to admit, but I’ve been in a fitness funk for a little while. Maybe you’ve been there with me—the alarm goes off and instead of getting up and pulling on my workout clothes, I hit the snooze and roll over. This is fine for one day, but what happens when one day turns into two, then three, etc? The workouts that used to motivate and excite me now fill me with, well, dread. The pull of my New Year’s Resolution has worn thin and I just don’t want to work out. I know it’s good for me and that I’ll feel good when it’s done, but it’s not enough. The couch and the bed just feel so good. It’s hard to talk about, but this is where I’ve been lately.
I’ve tried to roll with it. After all, life is a roller coaster, right? Sometimes we’re up and sometimes we’re down. What else is there to do but ride it out? That’s easier said than done for me. I beat myself up over my “laziness” and wonder why it’s so had for me simply to exercise—something I usually enjoy. I’ve attempted some things to climb out of my funk. I signed up for an ambitious race and tried some new activities to shake things up. I’ve read several inspirational stories of other athletes, but none of these have been enough to pull me out of my funk.
I’ve finally felt the fog lift a bit last weekend after a couple of very satisfying runs. The interesting thing about these workouts is they weren’t significant from a training standpoint for me, but they were fun.
The first was with our Distance Half Marathon Group. As a coach, I have the pleasure of running with many great people each week, including
Amy, Angel, and Jen. As we worked our way over 8 miles, we talked about exciting new things happening in our lives, nerves about the upcoming race, and found we shared views and opinions about current events. I left the run feeling energized and reminded of why I really do love running and training.
The second run happened the next day. I was “supposed” to go on a long trail run in preparation for my upcoming race (the one I signed up for to get me out of my funk). My alarm went off and the familiar dread crept back in. I didn’t want to drive to the trail and run for three hours today. I wanted to take my dog for a run and have a relaxing morning instead. So, that’s what I did. My dog loves to run and it’s hard not to be influenced by her joy. We ran for one hour, not three and I had the rest of the morning to enjoy breakfast and coffee. Instead of berating myself for failing to accomplish my training run, I switched my race entry to a shorter distance and ate my oatmeal.
There are many things that than can put us in a fitness funk: we develop an injury, life throws us an unexpected curveball, or we need to focus on other activities. There are just as many things that can pull us out of the funk. For me, it was rediscovering running for the simple enjoyment of it. Not worrying about distance or pace, just running. If you are in a funk too, try to remember what you enjoy about fitness and return to that. If you need some help getting out the door, check out our training groups—trust me, they keep you going!