Keeping it Real

A few weeks ago a coaching client said something like, “but I’m not focused or disciplined like you…” So I feel a need to clarify a few things…

First, as a coach, I partner with a client to help them achieve their personal best, accomplish their goals, and achieve what they want to achieve. I have absolutely no agenda but theirs, I am not anywhere near “all-knowing” nor do I hold any power in or over the relationship. The power is in what the relationship is able to achieve. We do that together. And I hold clients accountable only to themselves.

Second, we’re all human. I am human. Some days are better than others. Some days I feel superhuman and on a day like that I may run really well, or check-off everything on my ‘to do” list, or make a healthy meal my teenager actually enjoys. That’s when I’m focused and disciplined. That’s when I tend to update my Facebook status.

Then there are lots of other days – that sometimes turn into weeks – where I feel sub-human. Where I just can’t get my s*** together. Like now. Back in June I wrote about how I was taking “a little break” from running. I justified it because of my need to let my post-marathon(s) body heal; that I needed to do a little more stretching and strengthening (legitimate). Except I didn’t really do that. I just goofed off. I’ve tried to get back on track, but I’ve gotten suck a rut and it’s hard to pull myself out. Getting up at 5 am to run used to be easy. I used to get up and run or swim before commuting to my job in New York City. Now I only have to go to 15 miles within New Jersey, but I can’t seem to do it. Even when I go to bed early.

I’ve had some false starts, I’ve put training plans on paper, but can’t seem to stick with it. It’s kind of embarrassing since I am coaching a weekly group summer session for my running club yet I’m being so half-assed about my own commitment at the moment.

On Facebook yesterday, a memory from last year popped up, “18 miles. 9 weeks to go. Getting serious.” I was training for the Chicago Marathon and probably close to the best physical shape of my life. Not so today. I feel like a slug. But you know, I decided to update my Facebook status anyway:

Keeping it real here on FaceBook…since I tend to post about the runs completed, perhaps time for a reality check. I am not always the focused and disciplined person you think I may be. And certainly not the person today who I was a year ago. For the last 13 weeks, I have averaged just about 7.5 miles *per week*. In an effort to get ready for a half I’m signed up for in October, yesterday I mapped out a training plan. It was going to start this morning with a simple 3 mile run at threshold pace. Clothes laid out; alarm set. What did I do when the alarm went off? Reset it for an hour later and went back to sleep!

So, no, I’m not always the focused, disciplined, or strong person I’m often perceived to be (I mean good lord, I haven’t even posted anything on this blog in two weeks!). Just like everyone. We’re human. We get into bad habits. We get lazy. The saboteur voice in our head talks us out of achieving our goals and arms us with excuses. Or sometimes, for good reason, it’s simply a matter of our priorities changing. Because we can’t do everything, we have to make choices about how we spend our time. As a coach, I help clients distinguish between the good and bad reasons they’re not getting stuff done. We clarify a client’s values and help them make choices that best honor those values, and together set out a plan for achieving what they want. I’m not an expert at much and I don’t offer advice – except maybe to suggest that we all shouldn’t put too much stock in the “perfectly, wonderful” lives everyone else is leading on Facebook.

Now to go call my own coach… 🙂

IMG_4691A view of my lake front running route on a recent trip. Chicago 2016

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