Today’s playlist is brought to you by…..The United States Marine Corps
1-2-3-4, Unites States Marine Corps! I had to skip my long distance run last week due to a recovering knee (don’t worry! I supplemented with a visit to the Supernatural Convention and a “sandwich hug” from Jensen Ackles and Jared Padelecki so I wasn’t too bummed!). Skipping last week made me a little worried about my pace and if I was going to be able to step it up another mile. I was talking about my playlist and the songs that I knew motivated me to step it up a notch, and my husband got a “brilliant idea.” Marine Corps cadences. He hasn’t run since he completed his commitment to the Corps, but he had no problem analyzing how I should be running. I even had to do a lap around the living room to make sure I was on my left foot at the appropriate times. He hasn’t shown a ton of interest in my half marathon training thus far, so I was actually really excited to get the input.
I found a set on iTunes that passed his scrutiny, and I set off for my 7 miles. I had decided to stay on my road this time, doubling back on a portion, just in case my knee decided to give me some trouble. I always start out jogging and found myself jogging well past my normal walking point. The cadences really helped me keep my pace reasonable, focusing more on the words than on putting one foot in front of another. I expected to see some benefits, but I was very surprised to see almost an immediate difference.
I am a constant over-thinker. I worry about everything, explore every possibility, and my running has like-wise been plagued by this over-thinking. I convince myself that the little twinge of pain in my knee means it might go out soon. That little pull in my hamstring could become a torn muscle. My pace is way too fast, and I’ll have to call my husband to pick me up half way through my run. I’ve looked for ways to try to help get me “out of my head” and help me focus less on my discomfort in order to push myself more. On my previous runs, I’d used my surroundings (one reason I hate the treadmill!), my kids’ favorite songs, and making lists of things I needed to do later in the day. I was extremely pleasantly surprised that the cadences actually served a similar purpose. They helped me focus on something other than my feet moving and made it an almost assumption that I’d keep moving forward. It also made me feel good to know I was listening to some of my husband’s history. Something I knew he was so proud of, and something my son might call out one day as well. One lyric stood out to me especially thinking of my son: Mothers of America, Meek and Mild, Send to me your sweet young child. We’ll make him drill and we’ll make him run, we’ll make some changes in your young son. I’m not ready to give you my son, but I’ll let your cadences push me to make some changes in myself.
7.32 miles, 1:51:20, 15’13” pace