What To Do About Procrastinating Before Your Run

I’m a procrastinator. I know full well that I want to do something, that I’ll enjoy doing it, that I’ll be proud when it’s done, and yet I still put things off for what ends up being hours.

I notice that the longer the run – and the worse the weather – the more I put it off. So a day like today where I had 14k on the schedule and it was minus 2 and cloudy I took 2 hours between declaring it time to go and actually going. And I witnessed the thoughts that helped and the thoughts that hurt and they became this blog. Ta da.

Even before the first thing you can do here’s the first thing not to do – don’t keep thinking through the whole day, the whole run, and your whole self. Break down the steps you have to take and do them, don’t tell yourself a story during the whole thing, you don’t need to be your own Samwise all the fucking time.

On the positive side, first – get changed. Once you put on your running gear there’s no way you’re not going to run, you’d be a complete jag off to change out of your running clothes without running.

Back to the negative, videos won’t help. I’m guilty of thinking that watching a running vlog or a motivational montage will get me up-and-atom but all it leads to is another video. Watching is the most passive thing you can do, it’s very unlikely especially when watching short digestible clickable YouTube, that you’ll do anything.

The answer to that? Music. Put your headphones in. Even slow music or a podcast will at least break the tether to the room you’re in but you’ll be surprised that you have an unseen well of energy if you put on some moving music. And once you’re dressed and have music playing directly in your head it would be really fucking weird if you stopped, got undressed again, and didn’t go for a run.

Another not-to-do: Don’t debate if you should be something more important. Because you won’t end up doing it either. you’ll get paralyzed where all of your shoulds become equally important and therefore equally meaningless and you’ll feel like you can’t do anything right anyway. Yes, there’s emails to write and banking to do and the kitchen is a mess but if you weren’t planning on do it before your run then tough; get out the door. We all have the habit of waiting to do something for ourselves until it’s time to work and suddenly thinking about work when it’s time to do something for ourselves. If you said run-comes-first today then run comes first.

You’ll feel energized to get shit done afterwards anyway most likely.

And if you’re really dragging, do something other exercise first. I guess this is the way it’s okay to procrastinate. If you cannot access your athletic self at all and can’t see yourself going for a run then do 20 russian twists. It’s such a bite-sized bit of fitness you can’t possible feel like it’s a chore and once you do it you’ll be like oh yeah, I do have access to my fitness-self – the self comes from action and not vice versa, I remember now.

Finally, if you’re about to blow it off and call it a rest day – don’t say you’ll do this work out tomorrow. This work is dead, never to be run. If you need a rest day you gotta take it but taking a rest day doesn’t add a day to the week – nothing adds a day to the week.

Otherwise you end up in the same procrastination battle everyday. If today is 14k and tomorrow is rest then you decide if you’re going to rest two days in a row and never do the 14. Period.

Most likely though if tomorrow is a rest day you’ll be like, tomorrow’s a rest day I got this. And it’ll get you out the door.

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