There are two sides to the last couple of weeks leading up to Marathon Sunday: the side that wishes it was over and the side that wishes you had just a few more weeks to amp up your game. The side that is anxious and has your stomach in knots and the side that can’t stop smiling thinking about crossing that finish line with the entire city cheering you on. The side that is positive and the side that is just a tad negative. The last month of training always seems to be the hardest so I went into it with a game plan and a few ways to help zen out when those pessimistic thoughts start to creep in.
We all know I’ve picked up quite a few books over the past few months and while it’s always been something I’ve enjoyed, it’s brought a new sense of calmness over me to do so for 10 – 20 minutes before going to bed. It helps me to unwind, forget about any stressors from the day, and puts me soundly to sleep. I currently have 8 books on my bedside table and while I was never one to read more than one at a time, I’m in the middle of reading ‘Not Afraid of the Fall’ by Kyle James, ‘The Untethered Soul’ by Michael A. Singer, and ‘Body Love’ by Kelly Leveque. ‘How Champions Think’ by Dr. Rob Rotella is next up in the queue followed by ‘Let’s Get Lost’ by Adi Alsaid then ‘A Return to Love’ by Marianne Williamson. Harry Potter and ‘Milk and Honey’ by Rupi Kaur will always be there when I have a lull or need a break from the intense stuff.
I mentioned that I’ve been getting more into meditation and finding a new spiritual path lately. And while I’m no pro at the whole meditating thing, I’ve learned that taking a few minutes when I’m stressed at work or a half hour as I’m falling asleep can be life changing. One of my favorite pre-bed meditations helps to balance your chakras. We each have seven chakras – root, sacral, solar plexus, heart, throat, third eye, and the crown. These are the centers of our body where energy flows through. When any of our chakras are imbalanced, it can lead to a negative impact on our physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual health. Long story short, take a few minutes every day to focus on yourself – no phone, no social media, no distractions, just find what you need for that day and make it happen.
Not only does yoga provide an hour of re-centering and focusing on myself but it also provides a great stretch after running 5 days a week. I try to get into class once a week but for those times that it just doesn’t fit in my schedule, I’ve used this 30 deep stretch video, finding that it hits each major area and isn’t too long that I get bored doing it on my own (because that’s a serious issue).
Last but certainly not least, I roll out almost every single day, whether it be for 5 minutes or 30, it’s essential for any runner to get at all those aches and pains. And while I’m a huge advocate of rolling out, I also sometimes found that I couldn’t get at the right spots with a typical roller. Then I happened to stumble upon the IntelliRoll on Instagram – it’s specially designed to hit every single area including your spine. And while it’s a bit pricier, I think the benefits definitely outweigh the cost. Plus, I of course have a code (use CKULL for 10% off) that you can use should you decide the IntelliRoll is also right for you!