REAL LIFE RUNNERS PODCAST: EPISODE #262 – Feeling Frustrated With Your Running? (Transcript)
ANGIE: Hey everybody, thank you so much for joining us today and episode #262 of the Real Life Runners Podcast today we're going to talk about one emotion that every runner experiences, frustration.
So many runners think that frustration is a bad thing. They think that they shouldn't feel frustrated or that feeling frustrated means that they're doing Something wrong or that means that they're not going to achieve their goals? This leads them to doubt their ability, jump from plan to plan and allow short term setbacks to derail them from long term goals. But what if instead we just start to see frustration as part of the process?
KEVIN: So today we are talking about frustration, but we know this is something that all of us experience it. I experienced it multiple times today. Just today, and so what we wanted
ANGIE: Inside and outside of running.
KEVIN: Yeah, totally. So, what we want to do here is give you 3 steps to start this process so that frustration is something that you can use instead of just constantly fighting against or like push down and pretend like it does not exist because it exists, and we all deal with it.
ANGIE: Yeah, we all handle frustration on a daily basis in running, in life, in work, in family, in relationships, right?
KEVIN: In trying to outline a podcast to record it.
ANGIE: Exactly, we are a little late reporting this podcast because, you know, sometimes things don't always go smoothly and when things don't go smoothly a lot of times frustration is the emotion that a lot of us experience.
KEVIN: It is episode #262. I was trying to create an outline about marathons because it is 262 and just, it did not come together.
ANGIE: Oh, that's what you were trying to do. That's why you were so frustrated.
KEVIN: Yeah, it was not Coming together at all.
ANGIE: Oh, man!
KEVIN: The way that I wanted to do it was just confusing, and so now we have an episode on frustration, which is spot on.
ANGIE: It's pretty spot on for the whole process of outlining that and also for marathons like there's going to be plenty of frustration.
KEVIN: Yes, indeed.
ANGIE: If you decide to train for a marathon and so you can use this so yes, 262 now I understand why you were like in that spot today. 'cause like Kevin was in this weird spot where I'm just going to take a little tangent here. Like in trying to because we're gonna we love to be real with you guys, right, it's true. And so I asked Kevin, he was going to outline this podcast episode for us and he was like trying to explain to me what he was thinking about and I was just I wasn't getting them like why don't you just outline it and then like process through your thoughts? Because a lot of times, that's what Kevin, that's one of the things that helps Kevin process his thoughts is like by writing thing down, and when I read through that one, I just still wasn't understanding it and I was like and then I could tell you were just like exasperated by that point?
KEVIN: Let's can you, could you just explain it to me. I'm like you've just read a page and a half, what do you want me to explain? Read it and get it.
ANGIE: And like it doesn't make sense so
KEVIN: Which is the frustration I get sometimes when I teach my kids. I'm like I just explained it to you for 40 minutes now just solve the problems, and they all look at me like I don't know what Pythagorean Theorem is.
ANGIE: Yeah, but it wasn't exactly about marathons, it was kind of like a roundabout training plan thing that you had kind of talked about. But yeah, now I understand though, because you had mentioned this a couple of weeks ago too, that 262 is coming up.
KEVIN: As we were approaching episode 262, yes.
00:03:10 ANGIE: Yeah okay, so now I can understand where some of that frustration is coming from, so that's perfect actually for today. So, let's talk about this three-step process and this is something that you guys can use when it comes up in your running. This is something that you can use when it comes up in any area of your life, because like you guys know, we think that running is essentially just that metaphor for life, and it's one of the tools and the vehicles that we can we use to evolve into better, not better, but the next version of ourselves we can use it to grow into the next version of ourselves and to continue to evolve so.
KEVIN: And, uh, you treat you get stuck on better because better suggest that we're not good now you're all good everybody listening, you're all amazing but you can still evolve and be better.
ANGIE: I know.
KEVIN: I think that's right, isn't it? Where your hang up is?
ANGIE: Yeah, that's my hang up is that yes, is that.
KEVIN: No, all awesome.
ANGIE: If you're better in the future that doesn't, that means that that like, assumes that you're not good right now.
KEVIN: No, you're all good. All of you listening are amazing people.
ANGIE: All of you are amazing.
KEVIN: And you can still be better.
ANGIE: Especially if you're actually watching us on YouTube because if you're actually watching us on YouTube right now, so if you are listening to this in a podcast player, yes, we do put these episodes on YouTube.
KEVIN: There's probably a lot of people listening right now, they're going like wait, there's a YouTube for this.
ANGIE: What, yeah, everything is real life runners on all the platforms, so if you're not following us in on Instagram, that's where I am the most active right now @realliferunners or at Real Life Runners on YouTube or @realliferunners on Twitter, I'm going to be tweeting more.
KEVIN: You are going to tweet?
ANGIE: I'm going to start tweeting more.
KEVIN: Are you gonna make me tweet?
ANGIE: I think you should start tweeting more too 'cause you like.
KEVIN: I should start tweeting more.
ANGIE: You like the Twitter.
KEVIN: I do like Twitter, but it's a dangerous rabbit hole.
ANGIE: It's really fun, though. I think it's just like throwing out random thoughts and like seeing what kind of starts to resonate with people.
KEVIN: No one wants to jump inside my head 24/7. It's a bad place.
ANGIE: No, I mean, I've been there for trying to figure that out for 20 plus years now. So, there we are.
KEVIN: Back to the concept of feeling frustrated.
ANGIE: Exactly, so you guys can use this process to process any frustration and really any emotion if we're going to just completely generalize it. But let's just start with frustration. Okay, so step one. When you're feeling frustrated, the first step that you need to do is just notice it right. You need to notice that you're feeling frustrated and so many people don't aren't even really aware of what frustration actually feels like, and they just try to ignore it, right? They kind of can feel something coming up they can feel like it, but they're not really sure. Sometimes they're frustrated. Sometimes people say they're angry like and there are differences. It's nuanced differences, but there are differences between all these emotions. You know, there's frustration, there's anger, there's disappointment, there's all of these "negative emotions” and sometimes we just kind of start to feel a negative emotion, and so we just try to ignore it and push it down and unfortunately, when that happens that leads to a lot of times it’s just building up inside of us and then affecting other areas of our lives because of frustration and some of these other negative emotions. It's one of those things that doesn't usually just go away if we don't actually process it. It's just kind of like we shove it down and then it builds back up and then we shove it down and it builds back up. And every time it builds back up, it gets a little bit stronger and a little bit more powerful.
KEVIN: I mean, it is a great concept of how to build a running base of just kind of keep packing in the miles and then let it build up a little more and does not work for ignoring your feelings and shoving them down for sure. I think it just creates a massive foundation of packed down feelings that eventually will explode out at some point in time. Yes, like a volcano.
ANGIE: Like a volcano, yes, a volcano is an excellent metaphor for this but that is really what does happen, right? And so and I think all of us have experienced that, right? All of us have experience, kind of that seemingly innocuous event, or something that somebody says that just sets us off and we're like what where did that come from yeah?
KEVIN: Yes, yes because you.
ANGIE: Especially if you're a parent. We've all had that experience.
KEVIN: Yeah, 'cause the last straw is never big enough that it should lead to the explosion that suddenly comes out, but it's simply the last straw and now you get all the emotions from the past. I don't know several days to several years of feelings that you've been packing down and then here they all come. That's it.
ANGIE: I thought you were going to say decades.
KEVIN: Right, fine.
KEVIN: We're trying to.
ANGIE: Several days or several decades.
KEVIN: We're trying to avoid big numbers as I just hit a birthday also, it's continuing to discuss frustration.
ANGIE: Happy birthday to Kevin.
KEVIN: No, no, we're not doing that again.
ANGIE: Yes, you guys can wish him happy birthday on Instagram.
KEVIN: So, you point out one of the big things here is that people are not always aware what frustration feels like, and sometimes frustration feels like anger or it feels like disappointment, but they all are in fact slightly different. So, just pausing to notice like I'm getting some weird uncomfortable sensation, for me I feel just agitated like I can't focus on anything, I can't form a clear thought like I just when it feels frustrated.
ANGIE: When you're feeling frustrated.
KEVIN: I feel very like antsy, like like tingly sensation almost like all over. It's like I can't sit still, which I enjoy sitting still sometimes, and I think I can't do it when I'm frustrated. That's my personal sensation, but that's not how other people feel it like. Other people feel like tightness in their chest, like it's a difficulty breathing with frustration. So, you got to figure out how frustration hits you particularly and that's just really paying attention to how these feelings then physically manifest inside of your body, right?
ANGIE: Because when we say it's a feeling, that means that you actually feel it like it is. Like you said, it's a physical manifestation in your body. So, this step one is you noticing, where, when I'm feeling frustrated or when I think I'm frustrated, where do I actually feel that in my body? Like Kevin said, you know, ask yourself where you feel it like is it in your chest as in your shoulders? Is it in your neck? Is it in your lower back? Is it a headache? Right? Like people sometimes feel pressure in their head. Kevin, you you tend to feel like is it a tingling like all over your body or just like your hands or it's all over?
KEVIN: No, like all over like I just I feel I don't know.
ANGIE: There's just yeah.
KEVIN: Yeah like yes I can't sit still it's just like that like you got like you want to shake it out but there's nothing there. I mean there is there's frustration.
ANGIE: Yeah, there's frustration. For me, it seems it's more of like a pressure. And it is I would say it is like chest and shoulders for me like sometimes up into my neck, but a lot of chest and shoulders for me, like when I'm feeling frustrated and I think that one of the things too is like I all notice that sometimes, like I'm getting tense like in my hands or like somewhere else, right? Like sometimes you could just like tense up and not even realize it.
KEVIN: And you look down, you're like why am I making clenched fists?
ANGIE: Why am I making fists right now, right? So I think that this is step one is just noticing where in your body do you feel it and what does it feel like right? How can you describe it? What word can you put on that? And just breathe and let it like, just notice what does this actually feel like? So this is a lot of this is similar to, say, effort level training, which is one of the ways that we coach our athletes is understanding how running at different effort levels feels within your body right? How does your breathing feel? What do your legs feel like? How does, you know, your arms? Are they relaxed and next to you? Are they pumping harder? like what's actually happening in your body at a level 2 versus a level 8 right? So it's kind of that body checking.
KEVIN: Yeah, and there are clear differences and the more you practice this, the more you can recognize your sensation of running at different effort levels and the more you can like fine tune it, you know we've argued for years going back about how many effort levels there are and I mean the answer is?
ANGIE: Debated not argued.
KEVIN: The answer is infinite, but we settled on 10 and which seems like a solid compromise from infinite, but it's very important that you kind of like check in with these things because for the same reason that when you start to say I'm feeling frustrated, what is that sensation? And so for me I get this sort of like tingly like antsy feeling inside. If I'm like I think I'm I'm frustrated but that's not the sensation I get I'm like wait wait, this is not frustration this is something else. Same thing with everybody’s training you're like, no, I'm pretty sure this is a level 2, wait, I am breathing remarkably hard, this might not be a level 2. So, being able to recognize the cues, of all the different of what that feeling is in your body. Like right when I'm frustrated I feel like this versus I'm not feeling that maybe it's anger, maybe it's disappointment, maybe it's something else, because you're not getting the same sensation from frustration.
ANGIE: Yeah exactly, and same goes with like aches and pains in our body, right? A lot of times we tend to try to just ignore this, especially as runners or like you, you kind of feel like that thing in your calf, kind of like, hello, I'm here and you're like, no, you're not, you're not really there, right?
KEVIN: No, you're not.
ANGIE: We just we just kind of try to ignore that, we're just going to keep running, right? Like and you wake up the next morning, it's still there you're like, yeah, yeah yeah, I'm sure it'll feel better when I'm like a mile or two into my run. You go out on your run again, right? And it's one of those things that if you keep trying to ignore it and you don't actually notice it, it's going to keep building, it's going to keep getting worse. Same thing with frustration and then that thing will bubble up and you will not be able to.
KEVIN: Explode like a volcano. No one wants a calf volcano.
ANGIE: Nobody wants a calf volcano, said no one ever.
KEVIN: I did, I just said it did.
ANGIE: So, alright, so step one is notice it. Step 2 after you notice it and you actually see how it actually feels within your body. Step 2 is to actually accept it right? We can accept that frustration is there because so many people think that frustration is something bad, and it's something that we need to fix or that and then that means that there's something wrong with us. That means that we're doing it wrong. That means that we're not good enough, right in some way, and what we are here to help you understand is that frustration is something that all of us experience in running, no matter how long you've been doing it, no matter how far you run, no matter if you have one marathon like this guy over here, or if you've never run a marathon at all, like me, right? It's something that all of us have experienced at some point there is just frustration inherently built in to running because like, well, you know what we like to say is that running is a way to challenge ourselves. Running is a way to grow and guess what any time we grow frustration comes along for the ride, right? And so, nothing has gone wrong. If you experience frustration during your running during your training, another thing that's important to keep in mind is that when we fight something like if we try to pretend that like frustration’s not there and we try not to accept it like I'm not going to accept this like I'm gonna fight against it. Like we actually give power to that thing that we're fighting against.
KEVIN: Yeah, you can't actually defeat frustration with willpower, like it doesn't. It doesn't work like you're just frustrated and then you're going to try and like physically battle. So, then you're just still frustrated. Possibly now you're more frustrated that you weren't able to shove the frustration down then you're going to end up taking that out on the people around you. Which is not a healthy process. It's like you're still frustrated, you're not getting rid of frustration. You may be venting, but you're not actually ridding yourself of frustration. You just have to accept. Yes, I'm frustrated now and just be frustrated, maybe step away from some other people may step away from whatever it is that's currently causing frustration. If you have the ability to step away, if not, just accept like this is a frustrating situation, but I don't have to become all negative and all like mad and obnoxious at the people around me, this can be a frustrating situation that I can still try my best to be light towards people around me and this happens a lot I've I've seen as I was getting ready for Ultramarathon, they said just just let people have a little bit of a pass once they hit an aid station after Mile 50 because they might not be in their best of moods and it was like so I tried to make a conscious effort as I hit aid stations, I know that I'm frustrated, I'm not going as fast as I wanted, my stomach is hurting, but I tried to not be a jerk. Every time I showed up at an aid station and for you guys. Like you guys were driving along in the car, doing your best to take care of me, so there's no reason for me to be all mad at you guys, it's.
ANGIE: Yeah, 'cause you knew it wasn't us like you were frustrated at how your body was feeling but yeah
KEVIN: Right, so don't take frustration at one thing and take it out on the people around yo 'cause that's not helping anything.
ANGIE: Well, and here's the thing too, right? Like if we can actually stop fighting it and giving our power to that thing, then we can actually take our power back by just accepting it, right? Like if we can accept it and just accept, like Kevin said, that frustration is there, I'm feeling frustrated right now. We now have the power to choose how we act when we're feeling frustrated, we can allow that frustration to drive our actions and act in a frustrated way or act it, you know, whatever way the frustration wants to play out. Or we can choose to act in a different way. We can choose to kind of just accept okay, frustration is here, but that's not how I'm going to act, that's not what I want to act from, right? I want to act from love or I want to act from patience or one actual gratitude like I know my family is out here giving up their whole day the whole weekend for this like I want to act from gratitude, even though I'm frustrated with my body, I can still be grateful that they're here.
KEVIN: Because you can be experiencing frustration, but that doesn't have to be the only thing that you've got. If you pointed out a couple of examples, I'd like to act from gratitude or love, those didn't disappear just 'cause frustration showed up. Frustration just might be.
ANGIE: They're still available, yeah?
KEVIN: They're still available, frustration just might be trying to, you know, shove those feelings down. It's trying to make itself to the forefront that's what makes it so frustrating.
ANGIE: Well, I think that that's a really important point, that you point out is that there can be multiple emotions that all coexist right. You can be frustrated and you can even be frustrated over one situation and just kind of compartmentalize, that sometimes that's just kind of the opposite of what we're talking about here, because we were talking about how frustration can bubble over into other areas of our life, but that's a lot of times if we're trying to ignore it or if we're trying to fight it but if we just accept that it's there and it just is kind of part of the process sometimes then it actually starts to get a little smaller. If you've ever noticed right like, even if we go back to step one where we're just noticing it and allowing that frustration to be there and just saying okay, where does this? Where do I feel it in my body? What does it actually feel like? And you're just breathing and trying to notice this, you'll probably notice also that the intensity of that emotion will start to lessen over time, right? Because if you're actually just noticing it and accepting it and allowing it to be there, you are then taking back your power over that situation.
KEVIN: Well, that's the story of the trouble tree.
ANGIE: The trouble tree?
ANGIE: Tell me.
KEVIN: Yeah, so a guy who was driving his co-worker home and he stopped at the guy's house and let’s him out and before he drives away, he knows that the guy goes up to a big tree in the front of his house and he literally he reached into his pocket doesn't take anything out. He reached into the pocket and then touches one of the branche on the tree and reaches into the pocket and touches another branch on the tree reaches into the pocket touches another branch. Keeps touching random branches on the tree and then pauses for a second and then goes into the house. And you know the door opens, his kids come run to him, gives everybody a hug, but the guy goes to pick him up. The next morning, he goes, what did you do there? Yeah, like yes, sure when I dropped you off you came and you touched the tree all over the place. Yeah here though that's my trouble tree, so I take all the frustrations I have at work and I leave, I hang them so, I when he was touching the branches, he in his mind was physically hanging them on the tree like ornaments, he leaves all of his troubles from work on the tree because there's no reason to bring those troubles home to his family. Those were work troubles because then the next morning when I leave the house, I check the tree and I see if any of those troubles are still there and sometimes they are, but they're always a lot smaller the next morning than they were when I hung them up the night before.
ANGIE: I like that that's a really cool story. But yeah, I mean it's so true. Like if we can just allow something to be there, like accept it, a lot of times will diminish like in intensity in size. And I think that this is like when I was thinking about this and thinking about how people often try to just like fix it instead of just accepting it, right? It's like trying to resist something does give it that power, right? Like if I said to you right now, don't think of a pink elephant, what's the first thing you think about?
KEVIN: Purple elephant.
ANGIE: Of course, I knew you were going to say that, but that's like one of the things right? Like if I say don't think of this thing, you automatically start thinking about that like don't think about an Oreo milkshake right now.
KEVIN: That sounds delicious.
ANGIE: Gotcha. I just had to say Oreo.
KEVIN: Sound amazing.
ANGIE: So, in the same shows.
KEVIN: It's I saw a commercial. It's a terrible tangent, but I saw a commercial.
ANGIE: Go for it.
KEVIN: For Oreo thins. What is the point of those?
ANGIE: Well, you sent me a photo of those from the grocery store. One day, like Kevin had to go out and get something at the grocery store and all of a sudden, I get this text message that just is a photo of Oreo thins and he was just like what the heck like? Why did you take something and make it crappier.
KEVIN: Like let's take the best part and just remove it.
ANGIE: Oh, see, I disagree. I don't like the center as much. I think the cookie on the outside is the best part, but that's why I like the cake better than the frosting.
KEVIN: And that's why when both of us get it served to us, we sit next to each other and I get your extra frosting and it works out so perfect.
ANGIE: You get my extra frosting, I know it's fantastic. But like going back to like fixing things, you know one more example that I like to throw in here is trying to fix a relationship. Instead of accepting it for what it is. Now, we all have these relationships in our lives, right? Maybe it's your spouse that does something that drives you crazy, maybe it's your kids that aren't listening to you. At 13 like they used to when they were six, right? Like maybe it's your mom that is now retired and you thought was going to, you know, want to babysit your kids all the time and all of a sudden, she had decided she wants to have her own life. Not speaking on experience on any of these things by the way.
KEVIN: None of those.
ANGIE: But like so oftentimes, we want to Fix things and make them go back to the way they were, or fix things or just not accept that things have changed when in fact they all have, right? And we think that there's something wrong there. If our daughter doesn't listen to us the same way she did two years ago. Something gone wrong. I have not done my job as a parent. I need to fix this thing.
KEVIN: Or seven years ago.
ANGIE: Or seven years ago, whatever it was right? or six months ago, but like or? Instead, I can just accept like she's 12. She's turning 13 and she's starting to try to gain more independence, she's trying to figure out who she is and how our relationship works as mother and daughter and how she wants to respond to the rest of the world. And this is a very confusing time, and she's got hormones that are going on like all over her body that are raging and swinging moods from one thing to another, right?And there's all these other things that are happening. Nothing has gone wrong here. There's nothing I need to fix. She's wonderful and she's developing and she is becoming the person that she's going to be and all of these situations in her life are happening for her to help her grow and so if I can just kind of accept, that like yeah, this isn't my baby when she was six or 8 or 10, this is my baby at 12 and turning 13 and she's still my girl, but our relationship is different now and she doesn't need me the same that she used to. And I don't have to fix that. I can accept that I can allow that to be exactly what it is and nothing has gone wrong.
KEVIN: Yes, the acceptance, even if there is something that will eventually work towards trying to like fix the situation and make the situation better, trying to but it still does need be fixed, you also don't need to rush to transfix anything.
ANGIE: That's true.
KEVIN: I think that's one of the big key things on. This is like there are certain things that we talked about like having aches and pains. Like you can't just accept an aching pain like aches. Sure, I've got a little bit of a soreness, that's something you have to work through and something like that. But pain, unless it's something super super acute like this was always the joke in my high school is, it didn't matter what you had going on when you went to the trainer, they would give you a bag of ice because with rare exception, that's going to be your best immediate course of action, right? Like unless like you, you lost a finger that was always the joke of like oh hey trainer, my arm isn't attached anymore. Don't worry, I'll get you a bag of ice for it, but outside of like, yeah?
ANGIE: And wrap you in Saran wrap.
KEVIN: Yeah, yes, always the Saran wrap. But outside of like crazy things just taking that brief pause has to accept the situation before you try and immediately jump into turning fix anything is also a super key thing is that pause between recognizing it and then trying to do whatever it is. The acceptance that pause is super helpful. It creates some space to think.
ANGIE: Yeah, but I also think that we have to consider or reconsider that word fix too right? is like this is not something that needs to be needs to be fixed because frustration is part of the running process. There are going to be runs that are frustrating and there's nothing you can do to fix it. Some days your body just doesn't want to cooperate with you. Some days it is hot and humid out and it's going to, you know ahead of time. It's going to feel like crap when you go out and run. And that can be frustrating for some people, or you can just say look this is what it's gonna feel like It's gonna feel like crap and I'm just gonna choose not to be frustrated about it, right? Think yeah like you can just kind of accept that like, I'm not going to feel great, and that might frustrate me. And that's just going to be how this run is going to feel today.
KEVIN: Yeah, I mean you pointed out at the beginning like part of running is pushing yourself too challenging, challenging places and it's not always going to be a smooth ride like your progression is not perfectly linear. There's going to be hiccups along the way that's just what it is when you push yourself to a challenging place. You just hope that the Super frustrating days don't pop out on race days like that's really what you have is you just hope against hope that your frustration comes out on training runs and then if you get enough frustration on training runs and then it happens on race day, you're like, oh, I've, I've seen this before I know how to deal with this. I recognize it, I accept it. Let's move on to step 3 here.
ANGIE: But like yeah, that just so before we get into Step 3 all the way. What you're saying is when you can start practicing accepting these things that pop up during training runs exactly when you're during the race and there's really nothing you can do to “fix it” and you can just accept it and allow it to be there and keep going anyway. You're so much more powerful because you could let that frustration completely tank your entire race, or you can kind of just bring it along for the ride, which does take us to Step 3, which is welcoming, right? So step one, notice it Step 2, accept it and Step 3, get to the point where you can actually start welcoming frustration, right? Because so many of us want to just get rid of it, but unfortunately it always comes back right and.
KEVIN: This frustration boomerang.
ANGIE: It's the frustration Boomerang indeed, right? Because it's always going to be there so what if we can accept it and then start to welcome this as part of the learning process. Think about how much power that then gives us Again, right? Like we are all about helping to empower ourselves and you giving you the tools to empower yourself with ways to take some of these negative emotions, negative experiences, negative thoughts and use them and turn them around into your favor. So, what if we just decided that frustration is part of the growth and learning process and that it just naturally comes along with learning new things? That's what the learning curve is.
KEVIN: Yes, that is the learning curve right? Did you ever have a boomerang when you were a kid?
ANGIE: I think I did. Yeah, one time I had a boomerang that I got at some, you know touristy location, but I don't think it ever worked?
KEVIN: No, no. They're also super frustrating, I had a boomerang. Well, I had. I had like the cheap one that was like plastic that I could actually use and then I had a fancy one that was actually from Australia that my dad brought back from Australia.
ANGIE: Yeah, did you ever get it to work?
KEVIN: He didn't allow me to throw it 'cause he wasn't gonna go back to Australia and get another one, so that one just stays, that was a souvenir and it was excellent.
ANGIE: That was a souvenir.
KEVIN: Excellent. I really hope we don't have too many Australians listening and cancelling that one.
ANGIE: Oh, come on, don't don't be a part pf cancel culture.
KEVIN: That was beautiful accent you developed there.
ANGIE: I love the Australian accent. It is the Siri voice on my phone.
KEVIN: It is the Siri voice on your phone.
ANGIE: There used to be. Am I British now?
KEVIN: No, you're still Australian. Yeah, that voice that you just did was not the siri voice on your phone though. No, but the learning curve I think, is where I try to tangent us there. The learning curve is much like getting in shape, not linear like you don't just continue to learn, oh, I learned a step today, now I learn step 2 tomorrow and step 3 the next day. It's not a perfect linear process, and, frustratingly sometimes it's really slow at the beginning. Like it, you don't look like you're making progress, it's you are, you are in fact stacking bricks, but it's it's like it's an exponential growth. Your first few steps look like you're doing nothing, and until you take like 10 12 steps and you start actually climbing and seeing that increase in whatever skill you're working on, whether it's the acceptance of frustration within your body, whether it's training to run more like whatever that area is the learning curve starts so slow before it actually teally starts ramping itself up that you can see improvement along the way.
ANGIE: Yeah, and I think that like, it's important for us to remember that the more we practice, the better we get at something, right? So the more we practice frustration and dealing with frustration and noticing it and accepting it and breathing through it and then welcoming it, the more equipped we then are to deal with frustrating circumstances that are going to come up in running and every other circumstance in our life, right? Like we can just see this as part of the practice process.
KEVIN: Yes, the process of practicing, practicing, feeling frustrated. The process of.
ANGIE: And allowing it to be there
KEVIN: If anytime you go out and you get to challenges whatever the challenging thing is that you're trying to do there's going to be frustrations in all areas of your life. Parenting, frustrating work, frustrating running, frustrating. There's things that are going to come up so if you practice dealing with frustrations. Situations in one area of your life and you're like, oh, I'm pretty good at dealing with things that frustrate me over here, use the skills that you've got over there and bring them to a different area of your life. If you can take the skills you've developed in running of dealing with frustration on a run that's not going the way you want, and transition it over to you know, being a better parent, being a better friend, being a better coworker, be be like whatever it is, better team manager. Awesome like that's that's a solid win. If you can take things that you've learned about how to deal with frustration in areas of your job and being like man, sometimes I get really down on myself and I'm having a run that doesn't go the way I want and I'm just so frustrated I just beat myself up. If that's not how you deal with frustration at work, take your skill from work and bring that over to running like the skills go both directions.
ANGIE: Yeah, and that's such a beautiful thing, right? And so oftentimes, you know when we feel frustrated, we can make it mean that something is wrong, right? Or we can choose to make it mean instead that we are on the right path? We can choose to make it mean that we're learning and that we're growing and we're getting out of our comfort zone. And that's what comes along with it, right? Frustration is part of getting out of your comfort zone and learning new skills. It's like when I decided I wanted to learn how to play the guitar, about a year and a half ago, oh wow, It's coming up on almost two years now, which is crazy but yeah, about two years ago I decided I wanted to learn how to play the guitar and I have basically never picked up a guitar in my life I didn't even know what a chord was. I didn't like, I knew I wanted to learn how to play it and I knew I loved music but I couldn't read music. I couldn't do any of that stuff. And I didn't like the so anyway, I found someone a friend of mine that was able to teach me some chords on the guitar and I remember she said something to me about like, okay, now you know we're gonna do an a chord or whatever, so we're going to put it on the second fret, and I'm like what's a fret?
KEVIN: I don’t know what a fret is.
ANGIE: Yeah, like what's like? I literally know nothing right? And so there was a huge learning curve.
KEVIN: I know that the thing I'm holding is guitar. And that's it.
ANGIE: And then I strum it. I knew that I had to strum it and I knew that my fingers were supposed to do something up here on this act.
KEVIN: It makes a weird claw up here.
ANGIE: Yeah, and so I didn't know really anything and so my learning curve was pretty big. And when I first took the guitar, I literally, my fingers would not hold the strings at all like I could not physically make my fingers go into the right position and stay there to actually push down on the strings of the guitar and there I was so frustrated in that moment, right? Because I'm like I just want to play that basic first chord like that one chord, right? But my fingers were not strong enough to hold the strings down and strum, and like when I strummed, it just sounded terrible like it was like tingy and tangy and all sorts of not right, right?
KEVIN: Because you would strum and then she would strum and I'm like those don't sound the same.
ANGIE: Those don't sound the same.
KEVIN: I did not say that out out loud, but I'm over in the kitchen like those do not sound similar to each other.
ANGIE: Yeah, and you know so many times in my life, like growing up, when something started to get frustrating for me when I just like when I realized that like it wasn't going very well, I would quit and running and this is one of the reasons that I love running now, running is one of those things that has always kept me honest and always kept me humble. And it's something that I refuse to quit just because it gets hard just because it gets frustrated because I have grown so much in that process of not quitting like learning not to quit when things get hard and learning to push through even though it feels like crap like learning how to adjust my training in a way that's right for my body and like going through those like cycles of frustration when things aren't working he way that I want them to, unfortunately I'm kind of in one right now, like if I'm being completely honest with you guys like my running right now is not feeling good and I'm kind of in that place where I was just in a strength building cycle. I'm kind of getting back into like a mileage building cycle. Things are just not going well, I'm just not feeling great on my runs and it is frustrating I will tell you that I'm like maybe I should just go back to strength and it's like no, no, this is where we are right now, right? It's it's getting to that place where I can allow the frustration to be there and now I'm going to make some adjustments to like accept where I am right now, accept that I'm kind of in this frustrating phase of my running for some reason. I don't know how long it's going to last, right, but I'm going to try to make adjustments to try to shorten the amount of time. But you know ultimately, it's going to last however long it's going to last until I can figure it out, right?
KEVIN: Yeah, that's the thing, yes, and that's part of what makes it so frustrating is it's hard to see the end line of it is you're not sure when you're going to be to the other side of it, you know.
ANGIE: But are you committed to the process? Yeah, right? Like, how dedicated are you? How committed are you to whatever your goal is? Are well like, are you committed enough to allow frustration to be there? And still keep going, right? Like let's bring it along for the ride. Let's bring some doubt along for the ride. Like I doubt that I'm going to be able to achieve this goal, whatever goal you have, like right in the in the back of your mind maybe there is a little shred of doubt that you're going to actually be able to achieve that goal, especially if it's a big goal. Alright, doubt, let's go right? Let's come on along for the ride you're allowed to be there, and we're going to do It anyway, right? Frustration? You're allowed to be there. I'm going to keep going because I'm committed to doing everything I can to try to achieve that goal.
KEVIN: That's why you need a little strength training because you're carrying down in frustration along with your goals.
ANGIE: And it can get pretty heavy sometimes, sometimes right, and until you allow like notice then accept them, read through them and then they start to get a little lighter.
KEVIN: Yeah, once you welcome them, sometimes they run along on your journey, and you don't have to carry them and drag them kicking and screaming the entire time like that's how frustration acts yeah like it's a whole lot easier like frustration is literally a kid throwing a tantrum like you've seen these parents in stores before. Maybe you've been one. You probably don't want to admit to being one, but dragging the screaming, kicking kid out of the store, that is not the easiest way to move a child, but if you could just pause for a second except the kid is super frustrated and welcome the frustration for saying try and figure out where it's coming from like on, sure, you may still have a frustrated kid, but they might not be kicking and screaming, and eventually you're going to be able to get out of the door without as much you know, I don't know, force needed perhaps.
ANGIE: Yeah, I mean, I think that that's like we all want to try to like muscle our way through things right and.
KEVIN: Yeah, especially as runner.
ANGIE: Especially as runners, right? Like I was even talking to, we're starting to have some summer cross country practices with our school kids and one of the girls was kind of telling me about a bullying situation that she was unfortunately involved in and I said, well, what did you do? And she's like I ran, I was like what do you mean? she's like I just ran away like I ran away from the problem and it's like so many times that's what I think we try to do as runners too. We try to just kind of run away from our frustration, run away from our problems, and I think that maybe some of you listening to this episode even as we're talking about this idea of just accepting frustration and allowing it to be there and processing through it, that can feel very uncomfortable for you, right? Because you're like I am running to try to get away from my problems. I'm running to try to relieve stress in my life because running helps to just like I can just run it all out right like just leave it out on the on the roads and that maybe that works for you and maybe that works has worked for a while, but at some point that's probably going to stop working because oftentimes like we've talked about in some recent episode. So if you use running this therapy and if you use running to try to get away from some of your problems and to kind of run out that frustration a lot of times you end up pushing too hard too often, and that ends up injuring you or burning you out or making you feel really, really tired. And so, then you're not making the progress that you want to make, which can then lead to more frustration, right? so you can see how it gets into this nasty cycle so,
KEVIN: Yeah, the frustration cycle.
ANGIE: Instead, if you can allow frustration to be there and just kind of process through it, notice it, accept it, welcome it, then you can actually move forward from it and not let it be something that holds you back anymore. Actually allow it to be something that tells you that you're moving in the right direction like we said, you know tells you that, Yep, I'm if I'm feeling frustrated that probably means that I'm doing this right.
KEVIN: Yeah, I mean, that's really what it is. This frustration can be a sign that things are actually moving in the perfect direction, right?
ANGIE: Sometimes not, right? Sometimes they're a sign that you need to adjust and make some changes, like especially like we were talking about before, with aches and pains like you don't want to just ignore things and just accept them like sometimes it means that you do need to adjust, but that's when it gets it gets to be very important for you to have that honest check in with yourself and say, okay, what is causing this frustration? What can I do about it? Is this something that I need to kind of work through and “fix”?Or is this something that I can just kind of like accept for now and just keep moving forward.
KEVIN: Right, I mean it's the difference between frustration at not making progress as fast as you want and frustration at an injury. Frustration at not making progress, you're just going to have to accept that frustration because progress is going to happen at the speed that it happens. Frustration because you have an injury you can't push through it. You're just going to be like oh okay, but you do have to directly address the injury, and you know, maybe take some time off. Neither one of them can you just like power? Your way through to the other side, but one of them has more of a fix the frustration from injury. You can fix the injury as best as possible sometimes takes it longer than you want, but there's still a more of a direct fix there.
ANGIE: Yeah yeah, and and you know, hopefully that's not what you guys are hearing like it's not that like frustration just means like let's just keep going like there are definitely some times where it is important to kind of take that step back and address what is actually causing that frustration. And then there are other times that you just kind of have to understand that frustration is going to be part of the process and and that you just have to keep going.
KEVIN: I think you got it.
ANGIE: Alright cool. So, that's what we have for you guys today. We hope that was really helpful because we know that frustration is one of those emotions that is universal in running and pretty much every other area of our lives. If you guys thought that this was helpful, we would love for you to share this with a friend or leave us a review on iTunes or Spotify or whatever podcast player you listen to us on because when you leave a rating in a review, it really does help us to grow the show and get this information in more people's ears to help more runners feel less frustrated and make better progress toward their goals. And that's really what we want to do is really help people to feel more empowered in their running journey and in the rest of their lives,, so if you haven't yet, share this with a friend, write us a review and also, if you haven't followed us on Instagram, head over to @realliferunners on Instagram. And if you guys haven't claimed your free Real Life Runners sticker yet, for your water bottle, your journal, your laptop wherever you want to put it, shoot me a DM with your mailing address and I will be happy to send you a Real Life Runner sticker that you can put on whatever you want so, that's over @realliferunners on Instagram and like we said earlier in the episode, you can find us at @realliferunners on all platforms, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, all the good things. So, come say hi, we love connecting with our listeners. And we hope you guys have an awesome rest of your day.
So, as always, thank you for spending this time with us and for choosing to listen to the Real Life Runners Podcast on your run, on your commute, or whatever else you're doing.
This has been the real Life Runners Podcast episode #262. Now, get out there and run your life.