REAL-LIFE RUNNERS: EPISODE 260 – RUNNING IS NOT PUNISHMENT
ANGIE: Hey, everybody. Thank you so much for joining us today on episode number 260 of the Real-Life Runner's podcast. In this episode, we tackle a thought that might unconsciously be driving some of your training, show you how to unswind and release it so that you can move forward in your running with joy, excitement and purposess. The mistake that we see so many runners making is thinking that running is a form of punishment or misery that they just have to do for one reason or the other. This leads to always feeling not good enough in someway, or feeling like they have something to prove, which can lead to a lack of motivation and satisfaction with running and also a lack of progress. Today we will show you that running does not have to be punishment. And even if you don't realize it, you may have some unconscious thoughts that could be driving your actions. So if that sounds good to you, stay tuned.
KEVIN: This is the Real Life Renters podcast, and we are your hosts, Kevin and Angie Brown. Thanks for spending some time with us today. Now let's get running.
KEVIN: I am very excited for this episode on the punishment aspect of running because we had a little before we hit the record button discussion on running as punishment. And you asked me, has running ever been punishment to you? Not that I can recall.
ANGIE: Yeah. And it definitely has been for me. So those of you that are familiar with my story, I started out in competitive sports. And so running, I used to hate running. Running was always a form of punishment for me. Right. So it was like you missed a serve, you had to go run a lap. If you missed a free throw in basketball, you had to run a suicide. Like it was literally called a suicide. Think about the mental unconscious message that comes along with that.
KEVIN: Yeah, the first time that I encountered suicide, well, we did liners in basketball, they weren't called suicides, we called them liners. They were annoying.
ANGIE: That doesn't sound as bad, though.
KEVIN: So the first encounter I had of a sporting thing you said came from competitive sports. I also did competitive sports. I still do. I run to competitive sport.
ANGIE: Well, see, then I would say team sports, but I know now cross country is a team sport.
KEVIN: Team sport.
ANGIE: Right. But at the time I did not know that. Right. Because my mentality is like when I was playing volleyball, basketball and softball, which is what I was thinking about when talking about competitive sports, ball sports.
KEVIN: Ball sports.
ANGIE: Ball sports. Right. It requires more than one person on the field at the same time.
ANGIE: In running, in my mind, it was just something that you could go out and do by yourself. And now, obviously, I coach a high school cross country team with you and now understand the team aspect of that. But for a long time I did not. I had no idea.
KEVIN: I mean, we have a whole team ourselves, besides our car center team. We've got a whole real life runners.
ANGIE: Yes. Our real life runners training team.
KEVIN: It's an international team.
ANGIE: Right. But it's fun. Yes, we are a team. We all support each other. We have coaches. We are the coaches, I should say. And everybody does that, but everybody does go run and race separately. Individually.
KEVIN: Yes. It is always nice to see every once in a while when two team members actually show up at the same rate and they're like, hey, we have matching shirts.
ANGIE: Yes. That's so fun. I love watching our team members connect around the world. It's so cool.
KEVIN: So my first interaction with suicide in competitive sports was there was a hill at the two and a half mile mark of the cross country course that we ran three times during the season. It was called Suicide. That was the name of it.
ANGIE: Suicide Hill.
KEVIN: It was brutal. That course was rough. It was like half mile downhill, and then you looped back and came half mile back up to the starting point. Then you kind of wound around gradually downhill for the next half mile, and then you made all of that downhill back up in like 50 yards.
KEVIN: And it was just straight up the state. It was a cliff that you had to run up. It was brutal. There was a lot of people, and you had to get in a good place because if you were behind people, it wasn't a wide enough thing that you could pass people. And every once when you get somebody in front of you, it was like, they're going to walkup the thing, get out of my way. And there just wasn't room to move people out of the way. It was rough.
KEVIN: So that was my first impact of Suicide. But you're right, then just naming that hill Heartbreak Hill in Boston, is that supposed to be enjoyable? It's literally called Heartbreak.
ANGIE: Right. Yeah.
KEVIN: So sometimes names matter.
ANGIE: I mean all the time. I think that so often names matter and we don't even realize it. And I think that is kind of what brings us to this episode, is that my mentality growing up, and I think that this was a mentality of a lot of different people, was that running was punishment. And that came, at least for me, from that experience with, like, ball sports and the way that my coaches had chosen to run our practices. Right. I mean, I don't know if all coaches use running as punishment, but mine certainly did.
KEVIN: But here's the thing. Did they tell you it was punishment?
ANGIE: Well, it's not like they said, this is punishment.
ANGIE: Right, I mean. But when in my head, I miss a serve and I watched my coach over on the bench with her notebook and put a tick mark in her thing, right? And then the next day at practice, she said, Okay, well, the team missed five serves, so we have five laps of the track to do. It's the association.
ANGIE: It’s like you missed the serve, therefore you have to run and you have to run this lap. And yeah, I guess I could have chosen to reframe my thought as a 15-year-old kid.
KEVIN: But probably not.
ANGIE: Oh, this is so great. Now I'm going to get better shape. No, no.
KEVIN: We just free throws in basketball, and we would have to do liners.
KEVIN: But if you had to do liners, then you didn't have to do different aspects of basketball practice. And when you're in, like, fifth grade and your dad's coaching and he's trying to set up, like, a one three one defense and run through the nuance of that, can we just do liners and just run for a little while? Because that seems like a whole heck of a lot more fun than this.
ANGIE: Yeah, and that is why you grew up with that mentality. And I would much rather shoot free throws.
KEVIN: Fair enough.
ANGIE: Because especially like in volleyball, I never understood how the running helped me, right. Other than getting in better shape. Right.
KEVIN: Global benefit.
ANGIE: Global benefit. But even so, with that coach, she always would make us run, like, a mile, or on Saturdays, we had to run a full 2 miles before practice. I mean, give me a break. I hated those ones, but it was one of those things, and it was like, I don't run in volleyball. How is this helping me? Shouldn't I just be out practicing more volleyball? The same thing with serves. Like if I miss a serve, is it better for me to go out and run a lap around the track or is it better for me to do 20 more serves?
KEVIN: It's a very good point.
ANGIE: Right. And so that's why I associate it with punishment.
ANGIE: It's because I did not see the direct correlation of how me running lapse of the track could improve my serve. But, yeah, me missing a serve is what caused me to have to do this. Does that make sense?
KEVIN: Yeah. Do you see the correlation now?
ANGIE: I mean, yes and no.
KEVIN: I don't see the correlation.
ANGIE: I know.
KEVIN: I saw your volleyball coach today on my run. I waved at her, but I did not actually see the correlation.
ANGIE: And I do love her. Don't get me wrong, I do love my old volleyball coach, but I understand the correlation now of why she made us do conditioning.
ANGIE: Okay, so, like the running before practice, and then we did some strength and conditioning drills before practice, which I also hated. Go figure it. Now, I love working out, but different to think back, but probably not because you and I had different mentalities in high school.
KEVIN: Slightly different mentality
ANGIE: Sometimes I look back now and I'm like, gosh, I wish I liked working out then as much as I like it now, because I would have been such a better athlete. And I was already a good athlete, but what could I have done if I had enjoyed it to the level that I do now?
KEVIN: Yeah. So I wish that sometimes you follow the captains on your team. When I was a freshman, you look up the senior captain was a 410 miler. He was phenomenal. The guy after that was
KEVIN: Yeah, he was great. And then the junior that became a senior was like a 155-154 half mile. Both of them headed off to UCLA to run like great athletes. But every time we go to the weight room, the two of them were sort of like, yeah, I guess now we do coaches, like circuit that we do. And they didn't really ever put a whole lot of effort. They never made it suggest that it was an important thing. They did it, but they kind of, like, joked around through it, suggesting that it wasn't that important, whereas it was, in fact, really important. It just wasn't that enjoyable for them. But they still put the effort in mentality.
ANGIE: Well, I did too.
KEVIN: Right? They put the effort in, but mentally, because at the time, I had running and strength training and the best runners on the team put down strength training. So in my head, yeah, okay, we do strength training, but as we do it, we put it down. Then it's really kind of difficult to gain the motivation to go out and do it because you're telling yourself, this is the annoying part of running. Whereas you were like, well, the conditioning is the annoying part of prepping for all the volume. Right.
ANGIE: I would rather just play volleyball.
ANGIE: Because I loved Peppering, which was like, you know how he warmed up?
KEVIN: God, it's the worst.
KEVIN: We used to have to do. The coach would be like, we're going to do volleyball now? I'm like, Oh, no, it's Pepper.
ANGIE: Oh, my gosh, it's the best. I have so much fun with that. But see, that's the thing. I put the effort forth, right? Because especially as, like, a freshman, sophomore, I wanted to prove myself. I wanted to earn that varsity spot. I wanted to be on that team. I wanted to get that playing time. Right? And so I definitely put the effort in. I know. Especially, like, junior and senior year, and I had already earned my spot.
ANGIE: Then it definitely wasn't as much as I probably could have
KEVIN: didn't need to be there because you had your spot,
ANGIE: Which is really sad. And I wish I could go back and like smack myself up the head there, but like, you know anyway, getting back to kind of our topic here at hand with running being punishment, I do think that it is one of those things that so many runners actually do think of it as punishment and they might not even realize it.
ANGIE: And that's really what I want to dig into today. So you guys heard me in the intro talking about whether or not this is conscious or unconscious, it can affect how you show up in your training, right? And so many of us think of running this way whether we know it or not. And so the mistake that kind of leads to what we see a lot of people doing is that they think that running needs to be hard. Right. So not just that it is like a way to punish yourself. We're going to get into that in a little bit here. But it's also like this idea of it needs to be hard to be effective.
KEVIN: Yes. If you're not a fast runner, then the way to get faster is to push really hard. It's kind of tied in with this idea, which then ultimately just makes running much more harder every day than it needs to be. There should be difficult aspects of running. It's not the easiest thing to do if you're going to continue to improve over time, but there are also times that running shouldn't be that difficult. And that's, again, a difference between distance running, like quality endurance training and some of these other sports. There's other sports where most practices, because of the duration of the variety of exercises you can do, you can have some intensity on basically every single day of practice.
ANGIE: Yeah. Because most of it isn't as intense. Right.
ANGIE: But with running, especially endurance running, like, if you're making it harder than it needs to be and going out and pushing hard all the time, a lot of times what can happen is, like we talked about last week, right? We can go back to the L-2 running and how it's important to take easy days and that kind of thing. But if you're the kind of person that is kind of just going out there and trying to push hard, it leads to this feeling of always not being good enough. Right? Like you can never do enough. And that's really what can lead people into that burnout, the fatigue, the injury, really. Because it's just kind of never enough. It's punishment and it's you pushing harder than you really need to.
ANGIE: Does that make sense?
KEVIN: Because you've already dictated that you're not enough. That's kind of an underlying thing.
ANGIE: And nobody says that.
KEVIN: No one wants you to be like, I'm not enough, so I have to push to an L-8 today on my run. Like, that statement has actually never been uttered ever. Until right now.
ANGIE: Until right now. Congratulations.
KEVIN: I nailed it.
ANGIE: You nailed it.
KEVIN: But that thought is, in fact, in the back of several people's minds.
ANGIE: Well, here's the thing that I think is I don't think that consciously we think as runners, I'm not good enough. Sometimes we do, and we're going to get into some of those situations later in the episode.
KEVIN: Sometimes mid race. I've definitely had that thought.
ANGIE: Yeah. But I think that a lot of runners’ kind of with what we're talking about right now, it's that feeling of never doing enough. It's never enough. I'm not running enough. I'm not running fast enough. It's my running isn't enough. Like, I'm not doing enough. Right. And I think that's really kind of what you and I were talking about a little bit earlier with my experience in sports and how running was used as punishment. And I want to talk a little bit about your perspective here, too, right?
ANGIE: Because I always did I don't anymore, but I always saw running as a form of punishment for reasons that I already talked about. But it's so interesting to me. Like, when you and I were talking, before we started recording, I asked Kevin, I said, has running ever been a form of punishment for you? And you're like, Yeah, no, that was always the part of practice that I look forward to. And I was like, Okay, well, did you ever have any sort of negative connotations around running? And so I want you to kind of tell your perspective, because while I was kind of looking at running as punishment, you were seeing running as the opposite, as, like, a reward.
KEVIN: Right. Like I said, we had to run for missed free throws. So if we're in a game and a free throw got missed, I'm like, all right, well, that's a chunk of practice that we're not doing. In this other thing,
ANGIE: That might have been a good signal that basketball wasn't for you or football wasn't for you.
KEVIN: It got different as I got to, like, 7th and 8th grade. In 7th- 8th grade, I was very competitive. I liked doing light is an interesting word, but I kind of enjoyed the liners because I like trying to beat the other kids at practice. Then it was like a racing thing. Then you're literally running races. I wasn't on a track team until I hit high school, so that was my chance to compete in, like, a running aspect. But by the time I hit 7th-8th grade, it was annoying that people would miss free throws because then I really was into the other aspects of it. So then I'm looking at other aspects of practice because you asked, you're like, were there things of sports parts of the practice you didn't like the running and the conditioning parts of it? Were there parts of practices that I didn't like? And the best thing I could come up with was when I played football, flag football, for those of you seen a picture of me, I did not ever play football where they put pads on me. That sounds very painful, but flagged football, we still had to practice blocking everybody. So we had linemen. It made sense that they had to practice blocking, but I was a wide receiver and it was flagged football, so it's not like I was even really allowed to legally block on most running plays because I was downfield. That's not blocking, that's holding. I wasn't like but we had to spend a chunk of time where everybody was literally blocking. It drove me nuts every single practice, because blocking without any pads is literally just two scrawny grade school kids just punching each other in the shoulders. That was awful. And that's what it was to me, because as you pointed out with your volleyball, you didn't see the connection. And I think that's a huge aspect of this also is seeing what you're going to get a benefit of, which relates very much to the never enough. If you're setting up a running plan, you could always add another mile, right? You could always add another rep of I'm doing quarter repeats, I'm doing eight, wish I could do nine. Would ten be better? There's a point where more isn't better.
KEVIN: But it always seems like it could be.
ANGIE: Yeah. I mean, this is like you as a teacher with assigning homework, too. And this is the same thing when I see my kids come home with homework, and I've literally seen research studies that show there is no benefit of homework before high school. Right? Or is it before like 7th or 8th grade?
KEVIN: Yes, somewhere around that.
ANGIE: Somewhere in the middle school years. But like elementary school, there's literally no benefit. Right. And so I struggle sometimes with like, okay, we need to do in a way what we're told with what the teacher assigns. But also why?
KEVIN: Because the teacher assigned it.
ANGIE: Like what the heck is the point, right? And so it's hard for me sometimes as a parent, and this is kind of a little off tangent, but helping my children understand that sometimes we should follow the rules and other times we need to question the rules.
KEVIN: Question the rules.
ANGIE: I'm going to rephrase that even again. Like, I think that we should question the rules always, but then..
KEVIN: That’s very very true.
ANGIE: I think we should always question the rules, but then we have to then decide sometimes to follow those rules, even if we may not agree 100%.
KEVIN: Like the speed limit on certain streets. I don't agree that the speed limit is 30 on this particular street. It's got like a solid median with trees. It's three lanes. Why is it 30? There's no reason. It's not through, like, a tight residential neighborhood. The speed limit needs to be changed, but..
ANGIE: But there's always a cop that sits there.
KEVIN: That doesn't mean I can drive 50 down the road because there could be a cop behind that tree in the median. So you still have to follow the rule on that one, even if it doesn't quite make logical sense to you.
ANGIE: Yeah. So I think that it is interesting that it is a good idea for us to question this. And so I want you guys to just kind of think, have you ever in the past thought of running as punishment? Like me, right? Like, has that ever been a part of your past? And if so, is that somehow unconsciously seeping into your running today? Right? Do you feel like in some ways, running is still like a form of punishment? Like, I saw a post the other day on Instagram and actually even added it to my stories that said something about how..
KEVIN: this is a good one.
ANGIE: .. running. It's something about, like I forget the exact phrasing of it, but it was about how that 30 minutes of misery makes the rest of my day better.
ANGIE: Right? So it was like basically saying running was miserable, but they were glad that they did it because they felt better afterwards. Right? And there are people out there that really, truly believe that. And the person that posted it actually sent me a message because he or she didn't like that I posted it and said, look, running doesn't have to be miserable all the time, right? Because that's truly what I believe. There are some people out there that believe that running just sucks and that running doesn't feel good, but they like the benefits of it afterwards. And that's fine if you would like to believe that, that's up to you. But I'd like to offer another perspective. I'd like to offer the perspective that running doesn't have to be punishment, it doesn't have to be miserable. It can be enjoyable if you just start to look at it a little bit differently.
KEVIN: I think the point of that, when not just the misery of those 30 minutes of misery, then makes the rest of my day better, also relies on the premise of running is my therapy, which is also a dangerous path the head down, not what we're heading on today, but I feel like that mentality is also somewhere in there. So, yes, running as punishment, if you have that in the back of your mind somewhere, if you got into running with sort of some negative connotations to it, it may still be hindering you. There may be some aspects of running that you feel like you need to push harder to live up to these expectations that came from nowhere. Literally just put on yourself, because running and accomplishing these things, which, as we pointed out, you could always add more to the list. You could always add another mile, another minute or two onto your run. You're not necessarily going to get any benefit from them, as you pointed out with homework. I only think that you should do enough that you're actually reaping benefits. And that doesn't mean that everybody out here should be doing like, a 30 minutes run or a 45. It depends on what benefits you're trying to reap. But if you're getting enough out of your running physically to reap the running goals that you have, then there's no reason to add more. You are, in fact doing enough.
ANGIE: Right. Because then you're maximizing the reward and minimizing your risk of injury and other negative things
KEVIN: Of course.
ANGIE: Yeah. All right. So now you might kind of have an idea of how this idea of running as punishment might be affecting you either consciously or subconsciously. The next thing we really want to talk about is an area that's probably more conscious than subconscious. For most people, it's probably still a combination of both. Okay. But the second way that a lot of times people use running as punishment is for something that they ate. Okay? So what we want you to do is start to understand that running is not punishment for something that you ate or that it shouldn't be punishment for something that you ate. And the mistake that we see a lot of people making here is thinking that they need to run so they can burn off calories. Thinking that, Oh, well, I had that piece of birthday cake, so now I have to run 3miles in order to burn that off. And you literally see this all over the Internet of, like, I've seen it so many times of like, a piece of cake means running for 30 minutes. Chicken nuggets running for 40 minutes. I think of French fries is running for an hour. Like, there's people that will make these graphics out there that say, based on this thing that you ate, here's how long you have to run in order to burn that off.
KEVIN: Half a banana?
KEVIN: Three minutes of running.
ANGIE: Yeah, it's probably more than that. But the problem here..
KEVIN: is that how far you're going. It's about a half mile. Half banana, half mile?
ANGIE: Is that true?
KEVIN: I think it's about right.
ANGIE: I would have to look up the numbers. But here's the thing. If you are someone that thinks that you need to burn off your calories, a lot of times what ends up happening is that people end up pushing harder in order to burn more calories, which leads to people never actually running easy enough. And so if you're the kind of person that in the past you've struggled with your weight or you've been on diets before, or you've tracked calories, you might be falling into this trap. Right. Because even like calorie trackers, there are so many apps out there that have you track your calories, and you start to get very conscious of, okay, this food is worth this calorie. And then you go in and you put in your exercise as well. Right. You ran for 30 minutes.
KEVIN: Plus column and a minus column.
ANGIE: Yeah. And the whole goal of these apps is to balance out, to hit zero. Right. Like, you want to be burning as much as you consume. That's the goal. Or if you're trying to lose weight, you're trying to burn more than you actually consume. You're trying to be in a calorie deficit, right?
ANGIE: And so that leads people to this mentality of, I need to push harder so that I burn more calories. And the faster I run, the more calories I burn. Or the longer I run, the more calories I burn. And so when you have that mentality, you're never actually running easy enough or short enough. Right. Maybe you're extending your runs longer so that you can burn more calories.
KEVIN: Because any time, you framed this at the beginning of running as punishment for something that you ate. But anytime you start trying to just equate your food intake and you're running output as though these things should somehow bounce, there are times where it's important to keep in mind, like your food intake and your running. Like, if you're running for hour upon hour.
ANGIE: Yup, like when you were doing your ultra.
KEVIN: Then fuel intake, if you're training for a marathon and you're out there for over an hour, 2 hours, then you should be paying attention to the fuel that you're putting into your body.
ANGIE: Right. And then after you finish, you should keep eating things. Like, these are important things, but I don't have strict guidelines on that. There are some recommendations on that, but overall, I feel like the more detail you put to it of I ran, this many miles at this pace and this intensity so now I can justify eating this much stuff.
KEVIN: Or now I'm able to eat this.
KEVIN: Yes, it's a permission. I've unlocked the reward of dessert for dinner because I was good and I did my workout earlier today. If you want dessert for dinner, go ahead and eat dessert for dinner, because that sounds like a great idea, right?
ANGIE: Oh men!
KEVIN: I did not say dessert after I said dessert for dinner.
ANGIE: I forgot we had brownies in the fridge. Right?
KEVIN: Yeah, we did,
ANGIE: Dang! But that's true, though. Like, yes, running, some people look at running as punishment for something they ate or the opposite of, now I have permission to eat this.
KEVIN: Yes, either way is a really bad mindset.
ANGIE: We don't want to call it a bad mindset.
ANGIE: Let's not put judgment on it.
ANGIE: But it can be a slippery slope.
KEVIN: Yes, I'll go with that. It's a slippery slope. Whereas the only slippery slope that I think we should be enjoying as hot fudge sliding down the side of your ice cream. That sounds better.
ANGIE: That sounds better. It is so funny when you actually watch that and just like, the hot fudge just kind of, like, falls off your ice cream.
KEVIN: It's amazing!
ANGIE: So you guys can understand probably then, how if you have this mentality, whether it's conscious or unconscious, how that can lead to pushing harder and not going easy enough. And that is problematic. And we really addressed this in more detail last week. So if you haven't caught episode number 259 yet, go back and listen to episode 259. We really talk about easy running specifically and why it's so important and what it does. And it's not just episode 259.We've got plenty of episodes in our catalog in our history talking about the importance of easy running. So you could just go onto our podcast page and do a search for easy running if you want to so that you would learn more about it.
KEVIN: Just no mitochondrial density.
ANGIE: You just wanted to say it.
KEVIN: Yeah, I did.
ANGIE: Yes, I did. All right, so I'm not going to get into that today. All right. Yes, it's true that people with this mentality often don't run easy enough or don't like taking easy days because they don't find them as productive. They don't burn as many calories,
KEVIN: god forbid, an off day, because then you can't justify any food.
ANGIE: Well, that's the other thing people do. I'm glad you brought that up, because on rest days, they think that they have to decrease their calorie intake, which is actually not true at all. You should probably be eating at least the same amount, if not sometimes more, because during your rest days, your body is actually rebuilding and recovering.
KEVIN: Especially if you take an off day the day after a really long run. You take an off day the day after a really hard work out.
ANGIE: Yeah, you got to refuel.
KEVIN: You got to make sure you're getting enough fuel from that day. Not from what you're doing on the day of, but from the day before that. You probably aren't even fully refueled from. You go off on a 20 miler, you're probably not refueling on the day. You need the next day also to continue building back your deficit.
ANGIE: Especially if you're a runner that doesn't have much of an appetite after your runs. There are some runners that come back from longer runs, and they don't like to eat right away. And they kind of find that their appetite is actually suppressed in the few hours after a longer run.
KEVIN: Heat issue. Get yourself cool, get yourself cooled down as much, and you'll probably be able to get find some appetite better.
ANGIE: That's a nice little unexpected nugget right there.
KEVIN: That's a good one.
ANGIE: So instead of looking into this as a reason to not push hard or run easy or anything like that, I instead want to look at this a little differently.
KEVIN: This is good.
ANGIE: And you're like, I know it's coming.
KEVIN: I know it's a good one, too.
ANGIE: I want to look at this as what if we reframe running in general and ask ourselves, what if running is not the best way to burn calories? I'm just going to let you guys sit on that for a second. What if running is not the best way to burn calories? Maybe you've been telling yourself that it is, right? And that would lead to this mentality. But what if it's not? What if running is also not the best way to get in shape? What if we just took those things totally off the table? And right now, I'm not saying that it is or it isn't, right? I'm going to let you guys just think on that. But what if you are the kind of person that thinks running is the best way for me to get in shape? Like, I had a friend that told me this. Like, oh, I have to run because it's the best way for me to control my weight, right?
ANGIE: And so that was, like, the purpose of running in her brain.
KEVIN: Then running and food, really? They went hand in hand.
ANGIE: Totally intertwined. Right? But what if we just separated them and just said, what if running is not related to the food that I eat outside of it? Like refueling, you know, we made some good points there.
KEVIN: Right. Sure. But your overall diet is simply your diet.
ANGIE: And by your diet..
KEVIN: I mean the food that you take in.
ANGIE: Not a restrictive.
KEVIN: Yes, not restrictive. By diet, I literally mean the food you put in your body. That's just in the category of this is the food I put into my body. And then running is a thing that I do over there are two completely separate strands of my existence. I run over here, I eat over here. Those strands are not interwoven.
ANGIE: Yeah. What if we just completely separate them and then ask yourself, okay, now, assuming that we can separate these two things, right? Running has no bearing on what I eat. It's not a reason for me to eat or not eat. What are the other reasons that you run? Right? And just actually take time to think about that. If it's not related to me getting in better shape, and if it's not related to me burning more calories, what are the other reasons that you run? So some of the reasons that I thought of, that I would love to offer, and please feel free to adopt some of these if you like them or come up with your own or both. Right? So for me, running is a way that helps me feel strong. It's a way that I can challenge myself. It's a way that I can set a goal and achieve it. So it helps me feel that sense of accomplishment. Right? But I also came up with an idea of it also helps me to set a goal and not achieve it. Which is an interesting thing to think about. Right? Because then if I set a goal, not that my goal is to not achieve my goal, right? That seems ridiculous.
KEVIN: My goal is to not get my goal.
ANGIE: Right. That seems silly. But I know that in this journey of running, like we've always talked about, running is not a linear progression. And we don't always achieve our goals, especially if we're setting big goals. So if we set a big goal and we don't achieve it, then that forces me to adjust and try again, which helps me to build my resilience muscle. It really helps me to start to improve my level of resilience, which I think is a fantastic thing. And then go ahead.
KEVIN: It also keeps us in a job. Because if running was just a perfectly linear thing and there was a great formula for it, we'd be like, here's the formula and then we'd never see or hear from any of you guys again. It'd be like one episode of the podcast. Here's the formula. Plug in your numbers and off you go.
ANGIE: I know, but so many people wish that it was like that
KEVIN: but not when you think about it
ANGIE: What would really be the fun in that?
KEVIN: All of the fun
ANGIE: if you really think about it. Right? And I think that's another thing that running brings for me is to enjoy myself and to really see what my body is capable of, right? Like, to see what am I actually capable of, what can I do? And running is one of those things that also, now that I'm thinking about it, keeps me very humble. Sometimes I think I can excel in different areas of my life, but running is one of those things that will always kind of keep you in check. Like, you have one run that feels fantastic and you feel on top of the world, and then the next day or two days later, you have like a crappy run and you don't feel good at all.
KEVIN: You can humble yourself within running. And then there are days where you're out running and someone just goes flying past you and you're like, man, I was feeling good today, but okay. Or the things that you accomplish in your running life and you try and share them with non running friends and you just watch their eyes glaze over because they don't care. And it helps you remember that, oh, yeah, it's just running. Like there's that aspect to it also. But I mean, I love your list. Your list has a lot of really quality things on there. The building resilience and accomplishing goals. The benefit of having goal is you get that feeling of accomplishment when you do hit it and you build resilience when you don't. That resilience part, I like to add in that's part of where I get what I would call my artistic output of, okay, this plan didn't work. Running isn't linear. There's not like this automatic magic formula that you can put things into. There is there is clear data that you can do different workouts and they get different benefits to your body, but the way that it benefits one person and the amount of that benefit that each person needs, because there are certain areas within training that it's clear that if you optimize these three areas, you're going to improve. But which one do you focus on the most? And from one person to the next, because of the way they're made up, it's not always like, oh, well, just put a third of your time here and a third of your time there. Like, Angie and I wouldn't train the same way either.
ANGIE: For anything.
KEVIN: Yes, that really sums it up. That's part of the creativity aspect of figuring out how training best works for you, which requires a heck of a lot of resilience because you're like, this plan makes perfect logical sense. It seems like it works for me. I go through, I spend months knocking out the plan and then I show up at the race and we see what happens. And, Oh, I ran the same time as last time. That's a sign one. You've done great. You did the stuff, you're still in great shape. But that plan might not have helped move you forward even though it had some good qualities to it. Now you have to go through and recheck and say, hey, what do I need to adjust that I can keep going without just getting frustrated? If I tried so hard and I didn't progress, I'm giving up on it.
ANGIE: Yeah. And how can we show up in moments like that, right? Running really helps us see that. How do I show up when I'm frustrated? How do I show up when I'm not hitting those times or hitting those workouts or everyone is feeling terrible right now because we all go through those periods. It doesn't matter who you are, how old you are, how long you've been running, what distance you're running, what pace you're running. We all have days on the struggle bus. We all have them. Right? And I think that's one thing that is so powerful when you realize it, because a lot of times we tend to compare ourselves to other people. We compare our distance, we compare our time, we compare our pace, all these things, right. Because running is one of those things that is very number based. There's a lot of numbers in running, right. And it's a lot of ways that we can just automatically compare ourselves because that's what our brain likes to do. But what I love helping people see is that no matter what those paces are, we all have those same internal struggles. We all have the brain telling us to stop or the brain telling us that we're not good enough or we're not fast enough for all of these things, or that we need to earn our food. Right? That is a very toxic thought. That is not going to lead to good things in any arena. Right. The fact that you have to earn your food, that does not show a good relationship with food, a good relationship with your body, a good relationship with running. Right. Because running is then just a way to fix “what you just did”, which assumes that something bad just happened, which eating a piece of cake shouldn't be bad. Or a brownie. Those are some delicious brownies we have in our fridge right now.
KEVIN: Yeah, our daughter is awesome with it.
ANGIE: She is. But I think that this is one of the important things about kind of starting to look at running a little bit differently and start to reframe it in a way that might be more helpful. Because when we can start looking at things differently and start to disassociate different things and say, okay, well, this is something that I used to believe, true, but now you're asking me to kind of look at this totally differently and believe something else. How can I do that? Right. Because a lot of times, our brain latches onto these beliefs and these thoughts that we think over and over. So there are some people that say that a belief is a thought that you think over and over again. Right. That you just continue to think.
ANGIE: I also have heard someone say, a belief is a thought that you no longer have to think.
ANGIE: Right. It's something that you..
KEVIN: I like that one.
ANGIE: I love that one because I think it's so true. Yes. We all have these thoughts, but once they do become beliefs, we no longer question them, we no longer think about them. Right. So has running and its relationship to burning calories, has that become a belief for you that you haven't even looked at, haven't even questioned. And when I like to think about this idea of questioning previously held beliefs, obviously there's a direct correlation here with what we're talking about. I think about diet culture and how diet culture just is a pendulum that swings back and forth. Right. Like in the 90s, we were told that we need to be low fat, high carb. That was the diet of the decade. Right. And now we're swinging over into the low carb. We're doing high fat, low carb with keto and those kinds of things. Right.
KEVIN: Right. But before we had the 90s, high carb and get rid of all the fat, which then led to a lot of processed stuff.
ANGIE: So much process.
KEVIN: Before that was processed it was the first round of Atkins, which was..
ANGIE: Which was keto
KEVIN: Which was a high fat diet. It wasn't Keto. They would pronounce that Atkins.
ANGIE: They just rephrased it
KEVIN: I know that the rule book is the same. It's pronounced differently.
ANGIE: Yeah, but that's true. There was the Atkins diet, then there was this low fat diet. Now we're back to Keto. And so if you guys actually just look at these different diet cultures, that's what happens. And so all of a sudden, in the 90s, those of you that grew up in the 90s, like we did, not to age ourselves in any way, but that's when and it started to shift into this more high fat mentality. I know for me, my brain was like, freaking out. My brain was like, wait a second. No. Fat is bad. Fat makes you fat.
KEVIN: Fat makes you fat.
ANGIE: That's what I was told for so many years. It makes you fat. Right? It's even the same freaking word.
KEVIN: Sounds super logical.
ANGIE: Right? But now when you watch the research study and you do all these things and you're seeing the benefits of healthy fats and all these things not that I'm advocating any type of diet here whatsoever, but you can start to see how you do have to rethink different things, right? And I'm actually reading an amazing book right now that I would definitely recommend to people. It's Adam Grant's new book called Think Again. And it's about how resistant we areas humans to rethinking things, right. Once we've decided, once we have that belief ingrained in us, we don't like rethinking things. We don't like doing that. And so it's very interesting. This book is fantastic.
KEVIN: Yeah. You almost need to be put in a place where you're either forced into the opposite opinion, where you just sort of deal with it, which I'll give an example of in a second, or you have to so gradually be put into it that you can accept it without having to be, like, confront against it. If you fully believe something, you're presented with the opposite side information, you're going to naturally battle back against it.
ANGIE: Right. People automatically get defensive.
KEVIN: Right. So if you can be open to that and see it without having to do it, just see the other side and read some information about the other side. Like, if you were of the belief that fat was bad, and now suddenly people are pushing a diet that fat is good, if you're not forced into a diet where you have to now eat fat, but you're just like, people are eating this, and people seem to be living healthy lifestyles, and you just start looking into it without having to put yourself in there. That's another way to do it.
ANGIE: Hold on. Before you continue, I want to point out one of the things that Adam talks about in the book, which is like, I know you haven't read the book yet. I keep telling Kevin, I'm like, you're going to love this book when I'm done with it.
KEVIN: Yeah, everybody should follow on Instagram also.
KEVIN: He's a great follow.
ANGIE: He's a great follow on Instagram for sure. That's at Adam Grant. But anyway, he talks about that exact thing. He talks about when you have a black and white option and you're given a very like this or that type of option, and you identify strongly with one side how extremely resistant people are to rethinking their belief. And when the issue is presented that way, like very black and white. Right. So they had people read like, an article that was very black or white, and then they also had people read an article that was very nuanced. Right. And so when you can start to show people more nuance and more of that gray area, people are much more willing to actually start to rethink their own belief and be like, oh, okay, wait, it doesn't have to be me or them like this or that.
KEVIN: There could be a middle ground.
ANGIE: There could be a middle ground. And when there's so much nuance in between and you can start to show people that they're much more willing to start thinking about things differently.
KEVIN: That's a very good point, but it's very difficult to sell a diet book based on nuance. It's much easier to sell a diet book that says fat is evil or fat is the key to your healthy success.
ANGIE: I know, because a lot of people don't want this. If you do moderate exercise and eat a balanced diet and get enough sleep and drink enough water, you're going to be healthy.
KEVIN: The fact that that's sort of the platform that we live off of is why we don't have a million downloads every week. We need to be more polarizing.
ANGIE: It’s true.
KEVIN: I said the word diet and you clarified that we were talking about the food that we consume, not favoring any one particular diet over the other. No, I think we need to take big bold statements.
ANGIE: Big bold statements which is polarize ourselves like the rest of the world right now.
KEVIN: Yes. And then we'll put the opposite polarized thing on our social media and just confuse the heck out of the audience. It would be great. So my other example was if you're forced to see another opinion and you have no other choice in this matter, you're literally forced to see the other side, which happened to me. So I, when I drive to work, always took the same path. There's no good direct path. I either essentially have to drive north and then east or east and then north.
ANGIE: He usually went west and north or east and north. Those are the two options.
KEVIN: If I went west and north or east and north, I'm going to end up at two very different locations. I'm talking about being on opposite corners of a square.
KEVIN: You can either go up and over or you can go over and up. Okay, so that was my box. So I always went up, then over. I thought that was the faster way.
ANGIE: Sorry, I was thinking west northeast.
KEVIN: Yeah, it gets a little complicated that way on your map. Technically, I have to drive out of our neighborhood first. Thank you very much. We'll post a GPS picture of our house. It'll be super safe.
ANGIE: All right, you're right. So north and then east versus east and then north. I got you.
KEVIN: Lord. So back in 2017, when I was having seizures and I didn't have the ability to drive, one of my coworkers started driving me to school. Well, I'm not going to direct her on how to get to school. She knows where my house is, she knows where school is. I was grateful that she was driving me. She went the other direction. She headed over, then up. And on the first few days, I'm like, this is definitely the slow way. And then we kept doing it day after day. This is literally what I'm sitting there in the passenger seat thinking to myself, I'm pretty sure that I get to school faster than she does. Every this might be why she arrives at school late on occasion, because she's going the wrong direction. So there was a right in the wrong direction. And so now, five years later, I have completely changed the direction and I now take that path to school because I realized that the way the lights work, that that is in fact much more often a faster route, unless there's like construction screwing something up. But generally that is a faster route. But I never would have done it. I'd still be driving the same way. I'm on year 15, I think, of teaching at that school.
KEVIN: That's the path. That's how I drove to school. That's just what I did. So it would never make any sense for me to literally turn the other direction out of my neighborhood. But when I was forced to, it opened my eyes to, wow, that method actually is faster and more effective.
ANGIE: How does that connect?
KEVIN: Sometimes being shown and very clearly without it going up against me. That was the thing is I had no say in the matter. I was just appreciating the ride. So sometimes if someone presents conflicting information to you and you don't resist it, you don't accept it, like you just sort of sit in it for a little bit, then you can just sort of experience what that is like. So the idea that you are running and your food don't have to equate to each other might be so off putting that you just stopped listening for the last 20 minutes of us talking here. But if you just sort of sit and have that though trolling in the back of your head that my food and my running don't have to be on the same threat of life, and you just let that turn in the background for the next few months, maybe down the road, they'll actually separate their strands and that can be really helpful.
ANGIE: That would be very helpful. All right, so the last point that we really want to talk about here does kind of relate to this, but essentially what we want to help unravel here is doing things because you don't like your current situation is not the most effective long term solution to change. So, for example, running because you don't like your body and you want to change it is not the best way for long term, effective change. Right? And there's a lot of people out there that start running or are currently running because they don't like their body. They're not happy with their body, and they want to change something about it, whether that means they want to lose weight or they want to get more muscle or whatever it is. And this leads to people feeling not good enough and relying on an external circumstance like running to change that. Right? And so this is one of the things that we see so many people doing. And I'm 100% guilty of this in the past as well. This is why I started running. So I understand this mentality. I started running because, like I already told you guys before, I hated it. I hated running, okay. The only reason that I actually voluntarily started running when I wasn't being forced to run by my coaches, okay, was to lose weight because I went to college and I gained the freshman 20 pounds. And I started running to try to lose weight and to try to get back in shape. And it was because I didn't like my body. It was because I was ashamed of my body. I didn't feel good in my own skin. And so I looked to running as something that would help me feel better in my skin. And there are so many times that we do this. We try to change something from this place of lack, and we rely on external circumstances to try to make us feel better about ourselves, right? So, in running, for example, we would use a time on the clock or a distance that we're able to run or a number on a scale. Right. And like we said before yes, numbers are important in running. They are kind of a natural thing that we like to look to as runners, especially because a lot of us are competitive and we want to track improvement and all those things. Right? But they're not everything. So I think it's really important for us to ask ourselves, how many times in the past have you tried to improve something from a place of lack and how often was that successful? Right. Because I think that a lot of times it can be successful in the beginning. It's usually successful temporarily. Right. We start running, we get into a new habit, we start to lose weight, we start to see changes. But it's usually a temporary fix.
KEVIN: Right. Because those external validations, those numbers that are so easy to see in running,
ANGIE: Especially in the beginning
KEVIN: Yes. The numbers, whether they're getting smaller or larger, depending on what thing it is that you're tracking
ANGIE: Yeah, the time or distance
KEVIN: Yeah. They tend to change fairly easily at first, but then they stop changing as easily. They'll still change. But the difference between running like a 29 minutes 5K and a 25, that's 4 minutes. But 25 to 21, while it's also 4 minutes is not the same 4 minutes and 21 to 17 is not even close.
ANGIE: Yeah. And I just had this conversation with one of our clients this week, too. He's trying to improve his marathon time, and he just dropped ten minutes in the marathon, and his next goal is he wants to drop another seven. And I said, Okay, fantastic. Big goals are great. We've talked about that. Fantastic.
KEVIN: Love the big goals.
ANGIE: Love the big goals. Right. But just also understand the closer you get to your goal, the time is probably going to start improving in smaller chunks. Maybe not. Maybe I'm totally wrong. Especially because he's coming to us. I’m so excited about this kid, but he's coming to us. Having never done speed work before, have you never really followed any sort of, like, structured training plan? So I think he's just going to do fantastic, but understanding that when we put our worth or our progressor a measure of validation on that external number or that circumstance, and then we kind of stop seeing that number decrease or increase again, very based on what you’re trying to get to, then we start questioning things and all of a sudden we don't feel good enough anymore. Right. Like we felt good enough when it was working.
KEVIN: Yes. But now we're not good enough. The problem was that we were never good enough. We didn't suddenly decide we're good enough. We decided that the number on my watch tells me I'm good enough. So when the number on my watch stops telling me I’m good enough, then I'm no longer good enough.
ANGIE: Right. And people do this with their garments, with the VO2 max. Right. Productive versus unproductive status, right? They’re letting this external thing that has an algorithm on your watch that's inaccurately measuring your heart rate on your wrist.
KEVIN: Oh, my word.
ANGIE: I was looking to determine whether or not they feel good about that run or not.
KEVIN: That was a joke that these guys made on the podcast I was listening to today. The one guy goes, because he runs a lab, he's one of the best physiologists’ measures. He was on the Kipchoge team to help him go under 2 hours. He’s a data guy and he's got all sorts of labs where they measure this stuff. And he goes, I've got people that come into the lab and they’re like, I've got a VO2 max of 70, so I’m not sure why I can't keep up with so and so on the run or so and so on the bike. And he goes, well, how did you figure out your VO2 max? And they'll explain that it came from a watch or a thing on their bike. And he's like, Oh, well, you can't keep up with them because that's not even close to your VO2 Max.
ANGIE: Right. Exactly. Completely inaccurate. But that's the thing is, yes, we may have that temporary success. This is what you see when you look at like, crash diets or extreme exercise plans. But the problem is these things are not sustainable because they are coming from this place of lack and from being not good enough, not feeling good enough, and wanting these external circumstances to show us that we are good enough. So what I'm trying to offer you guys here today, and this is a big ask for some of you and for others of you, if you guys really listen to me right now, this can be something that can completely change your life. So instead of changing from a place of I don't like my body, I'm not good enough, change from a place of I love myself and I just want to grow, right? Because if you can change, if you can improve yourself I don't even like using the word improve. And when I was outlining this podcast, I was even trying to be very aware of the words that I'm using. It’s not about being a better version of yourself, it’s just being the next version of yourself. It’s just about growth, right? Personal growth.
KEVIN: Growth is better improvement.
ANGIE: I love the word growth, right? It’s like one of my core values as a human. But if we can change, if we can grow from that place of love, that is a sustainable place for progress, that is the most effective long-term solution. Because instead of saying, I don't like my body, it’s not good enough the way it is right now. Guess what? If you feel that way, no time on the clock, no distance that you run, and no number on the scale is going to change that. I guarantee it because you're going to get to that next place and that's still not going to be good enough. Because external circumstances cannot change the internal message in your brain. You can do that. Only you. It's whatever you're making that external circumstance mean, it's your thought about it that matters. So you can start to choose those thoughts now before you even get there. You can try, I shouldn't say try. You can improve your thoughts right now and I will use improve in that sense very consciously.
KEVIN: You just took try away there. Thank you, Yoda.
ANGIE: Yeah. But in my opinion, we should always be trying to grow and improve. Right. But not because you're not enough where you are right now. You can be amazing as you are right now and still want to grow.
KEVIN: Yes, 100%.
ANGIE: And one way that I love thinking about this is having a child.
ANGIE: Okay. So would you ever look at your kids and tell them that they weren't good enough?
ANGIE: I mean, there might be some parents out there that would, but most of us, especially if it's like a five-year-old, right? Like look at your little three-year-old playing blocks and trying to stack up the blocks and the blocks fall over. Would you yell at your kids to tell like, you’re not good enough, you only got five blocks that time? It’s ridiculous.
KEVIN: The two of us used to joke about this back when we had like the little toddlers not even in front of them because they would take this in. But two sleep deprived parents would use to make these jokes. When the kid went down for a nap, she kept trying to stack them and she got them three high and the fourth one and I'm watching and she's putting it off to the side and like it's going to fall down every time you put it just stack it straight on top. The heck is wrong with you? But obviously this was just the joke that the two of us are having.
ANGIE: Right. We have never actually say that. And if that ever came out of your mouth, I don't know if we would still be married. Like whats wrong with you child.
KEVIN: But the best part was you can't even go over there and try and fix it because then she doesn't actually figure out how to do the thing herself. But you're watching her fail over and over and over again. Come on, kid.
ANGIE: And that's the beautiful thing about children. But if you think about your kid, right, would you ever tell your kid that they were not good enough? And the answer hopefully for most of you would be of course not, right. You can acknowledge that your child is perfect where they are right now, but you can also acknowledge that it's important for them to grow physically, mentally, emotionally, right? I mean, we have a nine-year-old and a twelve-year-old right now. I sure as heck hope. I love my children. They are amazing where they are right now. They’re exactly where they need to be. But when my kid's 30, she better not still be acting like she's acting right now. I hope to goodness that she has grown physically, mentally, emotionally, in all the ways. Right?
KEVIN: Honestly, she's still making those brownies that we're doing okay.
ANGIE: Because growth is important. Growth is one of those things that we should continually strive for as humans, right? So this is one of the things that I love to question. It’s like, okay, so if we can all get on board with this premise of our children are good enough and perfect exactly where they are, but it’s also important for them to grow physically, emotionally, mentally right?
KEVIN: On board.
ANGIE: Then why do we assume as adults that we're just done growing?
KEVIN: Because we win. I made it to the end of the game.
ANGIE: But, like, instead, we use our current circumstances against ourselves and for some reason decide that we’re not good enough where we are. So, because I'm not good enough, then that means I have to change, right? That’s the reason that I have to change. But what if instead, we just recognize that we’re just on a journey and that we are exactly where we need to be right now, now listening to the Real-Life Runner's podcast. And we also want to continue to grow and evolve to the next version of ourselves again, not the better version of ourselves, just the next version, the more evolved version, the more the growth version of ourselves. That’s not really a good adjective to use there. The more evolved
KEVIN: It’s the more evolved
ANGIE: The more evolved version.
KEVIN: You’re continuing to improve, to continue to get forward just because you don't succeed at something. The stacking blocks is a great example of this thing because in the long term, is it important whether we've all gained the ability to stack blocks? Like, that's not a test that we have to do now that we're adults. Like, oh, now we're all going to stack blocks.
ANGIE: I think my highest I ever got to was like 19 or 20.
KEVIN: I know the two of us used to stack blocks. We would totally compete against each other.
ANGIE: How can we get them?
KEVIN: She's over there trying to get number four. And Angie and I are over here. Like, I've got 36 stacked up here. You're holding the top of it, that's fine. But outside of sleep deprived parenting of small toddlers, that's not a skill that you have to have as you grow up. And yet it's still something just for the agility of a small child that it's a beneficial thing they do. But just because she didn't succeed at the first time doesn't mean that she was a bad kid. It doesn't mean that she was an unsuccessful kid. It doesn't mean that she was a failure. And somehow, we hit this point somewhere in our life that we attempt a thing, we don't do well at it, and instead of them striving to improve on it, we're like, Well, I'm a failure at that.
ANGIE: I guess that's not for me, right. Or deciding that we're not good enough and then trying to change from that.
ANGIE: And to go back, that is really the point here. The point is not that we just decide that we’re good here and there are some people that do. Right? There are some people that decide that they try something. They try something once or twice or a couple of times and they're not making progress and they're like, Oh, I guess that thing is just not for me. There's a lot of people that write off running that way. I'm guessing those are not the people listening to this podcast, but maybe it was you in the past. Maybe you were at that place at some point in time.
KEVIN: Maybe we have somebody listening who's on that verge right now.
ANGIE: Yeah. And we're telling you that you don't have to go there. Right. I had someone just DM me today or the other day on Instagram about how she's really, like, she used to run and she ended up with like a long bout of really bad covid and how it just really knocked her out. Right. And how it's so natural for us to try to compare ourselves to that previous version of ourselves. Right. But what's the point of that? Especially if you're using it to beat yourself up.
KEVIN: Yeah. You're not the previous version. You're the current version.
ANGIE: You’re the current version that's now gone through all of that.
KEVIN: Go from here.
ANGIE: You can't just erase that, right? You need to take all of that from where you are right now and use that as a way to, okay, this is where I am. And where I am right now is perfect. Where I am right now is exactly where I need to be. And I know that for sure because this is where I am. You're not supposed to be anywhere else. And I think this is another thought that I'm just going to throw in here.
KEVIN: This is a big jump, but go for it.
ANGIE: It's a really big jump. But it's true in my opinion. This is the truth. Because a lot of times we like to think that, oh, I'm supposed to be further along right now. I’m supposed to be this, I'm supposed to be that. But if you are actually supposed to be something else than you are currently, you would be that thing, right? Because if you're supposed to be, then you would be. But the truth is, you are where you are right now, wherever that is. And so that is where you're supposed to be. This is exactly where you're meant to be right now. So we can take that spot and then use it as our starting point or as just a checkpoint along our journey because most of us aren't starting from ground zero, but, okay, this is where we are now. Now, how do we grow from here? And how do we do that from a place of love, from a place of recognizing I am wonderful and amazing, where I am right now. And I want to run because I love my body, because I want to see what I can do, because I want to grow, because I want to improve my strength, my resilience, my confidence. All these things that we talked about before as alternate reasons to run, how can I run from that place of love to try to just grow as a human?
KEVIN: Yeah, it might be a big step for some people. It's a little woohoo. It might be a little woohoo.
ANGIE: And I love the woohoo.
KEVIN: Yeah, you definitely do. But if that thought is a little bit too big of a jump for you, perhaps simply the thought of this is where I am, period, without a good or bad or anything to it, this is simply where I am. And now I'm going to my next place. Not, this is where I am, and I'm stuck here now. This is where I am, and celebrate. It’s not, this is where I am. It's terrible. This is simply where I am. Because we can all accept that as a fact. This is where I am. And now I'm going further, and I think that's less of a big jump that more people might be able to tap onto. If you can make it all the way to Angie's step, that's phenomenal. But sometimes that's a big leap,
ANGIE: and maybe they can. I've been practicing it for a very long time, and sometimes those other ones still creep in, right? And I use that one a lot, too, like what you just offered. This is where I am, and I do this in my business a lot. I'm like, well, we've been doing this podcast for a couple of years now. We should have more downloads, or we should have clearly, we shouldn't because we don't, right? But those thoughts still like to creep in. Those thoughts still like to present themselves.
KEVIN: Maybe we should just throw out some really strong political thoughts right here and see if we can get our doing that.
ANGIE: Okay, I'm not doing that.
KEVIN: She keeps asking how we can get her download numbers out, but I say yes
KEVIN: for people to like and share with other people.
ANGIE: That's it.
KEVIN: Or strong political thoughts. And which diet is the best thing for you?
ANGIE: I'm just going to ask our wonderful listeners that are currently listening to this episode if you would please like and share this and leave us a review. Okay, but we're not getting let me wrap up the episode first. But yes, I'm going to rely on our amazing listeners already to share this podcast to help us grow, because I think that word of mouth and referrals are the best way. Like, if you guys enjoy this podcast and you find it valuable enough to recommend to your friends and I know we're doing something right.
ANGIE: So anyway, wrapping it up. Running does not have to be punishment. Running is not punishment. Running is a way for you to grow. Running is a way for you to challenge yourself. Running as a way for so many things in your life, and it does not have to be punishment. So, we really want you to be honest with yourself and just think about it. Are you using running as punishment in any way or as permission, like what Kevin was talking about before? And if you are, are you willing to think about it a little bit differently? Are you willing to think about running separately from your food or from your self-worth or from all of that? And can you think of it as a path to growth and self-improvement instead?
KEVIN: Can running just be running?
ANGIE: Can running just be running.
KEVIN: in and of itself.SS It can be often.
ANGIE: Yeah, for sure. So if you guys found this helpful, please like and share. I can't really like a podcast, I guess. It's not really a liking thing.
KEVIN: That's why you listen to it.
ANGIE: But that's the thing I say on Instagram.
KEVIN: If you're still listening at this point you do like this podcast.
ANGIE: Yes. But share it. Share it on Instagram. Put it on your stories, take a screenshot, put it up on your stories and tag us. I've had people reach out to me that have found the podcast and have found us through us being tagged in other people's stories. So, it matters. You guys might think it doesn't. It does. I've had people tell me recently that they've heard me on other podcasts, and if you guys haven't heard me on some of the guest podcasts, you guys should definitely go check those out. Follow us on Instagram at Real Life Runners. Leave us a review on iTunes or Spotify that helps us to share this show and the message with everybody that needs to hear it. So, thank you to all of you guys that have already done that. If you have already left us a review, you can leave us another one if you want. You can actually leave us a review on every single episode. If there was something about this particular episode that spoke to you, leave us a review. We would love to see that. And then, of course, share and do all the things at Real Life Runners on Instagram. Come talk to me. Send me a DM. I would love to hear from you. And also, I'm still going to throw out the sticker offer again, I know some of you guys have been DMing me and emailing me if you want a free Real-Life Runner sticker to add to your water bottle, your notebook, or wherever you like to put it. Send me your address to Angie at realliferunners.com or send me a DM on Instagram with your mailing address. And I would love to send you a free sticker as a thank you for listening to the podcast. So as always, guys, thank you so much for spending this time with us today. This has been the Real-Life Runners podcast, episode number 260.
Now get out there and run your life.