Channeling My Inner Carebear

November 17, 2012 at 3:33 pm 8 comments

That’s right. I said it. I’ve been channeling my inner Carebear this week. You may ask, “Why?” To which I say, “Why not?” They’re so cute, and I loved the Carebears when I was a kid. And I mean, LOVED. Who didn’t?

But seriously, there is some silly logic to this. On my Thursday run (a quick 3 miles before yoga) I decided that, instead of thinking about what I shouldn’t be doing on my runs, I would focus on what I should be doing. In other words, instead of trying to convince myself to relax I started thinking about gathering my energy, my ch’i, into my core and using that to propel me forward like a light beam. When I started visualizing that, I felt like a Carebear, and well, now I’m all about finding my Carebear stare on my runs. Like this:

I found that when I focused solely on projecting my energy in front of me like a lightbeam some tension in my legs did melt away and I was supported, almost lifted, by the energy.

I’m not entirely pulling this out of thin air. Chi Running is very much inspired by T’ai Chi, which has at its core the concept that your mind directs your ch’i and your ch’i moves your body. This is principle is applied in Chi Running through the practice of “gathering and issuing” and using your y’chi. The Carebear stare is just how I visualize doing this.

Today on my long run–7 miles (holy crap!)–I also thought about this and prior to the run I did a seated meditation for a few minutes to connect with my breath and start gathering my energy. However, during the run I wasn’t able to find my Carebear stare as much as I wanted. So this is something I’ll still need to practice, but I’m filing it away in the toolbox.

As for some remarks on today’s run, the first few miles were a little rough–my shins were pretty tender and I was really tight, but after some stretches I was able to relax more and get into a groove. For the first time I experienced the sensation of “miles passing by quickly,” which was a nice surprise. I finished the 7 miles in 1 hour and 19 minutes (11:24 pace, or so) and feel pretty good; hopefully I won’t be too sore tomorrow.

And, just for good measure, here’s a picture of Tenderheart Bear, the leader of the Carebears. Because every blog post should have at least three cartoon pictures, especially when my view for today’s run was so dreary.

See? Some Carebear (how many times can I say Carebear in one post?!) cheer and color is just what the doc ordered after this rainy, coldish, gray run.

So how do you gather your energy on your runs? What do you focus on?

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Entry filed under: Chi Running, Energy, Half Marathon Training, LSD, mid week run. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , .

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8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Chatter  |  November 19, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Loved the use of carebeares to explain your mental visualizations. I think most of the time when I am running I am always running through things like, calves are tight… need to loosen them up… this feels good… is this ever going to end, the mile should be up soon…
    Sometimes the time flies by, but unfortunately some times I am all too aware of the time going by. That is when I try to just enjoy the run and tell my head to shut up.

    Reply
    • 2. Steph  |  November 19, 2012 at 10:25 am

      That sounds exactly like most of my runs as well!

      Reply
  • 3. Jane Fritz  |  November 18, 2012 at 5:20 am

    Nice time for your 7 miles. Only 6.1 more left; you’re more than halfway!

    Reply
    • 4. Steph  |  November 18, 2012 at 8:46 am

      Thanks! I know–I’m really getting there! This is getting more and more real, but also totally do-able.

      Reply
  • 5. grackleandsun  |  November 17, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    Lol. My qigong practice is not going to be the same tomorrow. :D

    Reply
    • 6. Steph  |  November 18, 2012 at 8:47 am

      Haha! Yes! I can only imagine what a beautiful room it is with all those Carebear stares!! :)

      Reply
  • 7. Joanna Broadbent  |  November 17, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    Lol I LOVE Carebears and this post!!!!

    Reply
    • 8. Steph  |  November 18, 2012 at 8:47 am

      Thanks! I was giggling a lot when writing it! :)

      Reply

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