WTF am I doing?!?!? (I've lost my mojo)

Really. What the 'eff am I doing? I have no idea. I've completely shut down. I can't write. I can't train. I can't write about training. I suddenly feel like I have nothing to contribute. I really wish I knew what my problem was. Well, that's not all entirely true. I'm back to training after my forced mini-taper (wife's surgery, kids illnesses, my illness, ugh). As of today I've only put-in 61 miles in February, 42 of which I've gotten-in since the 18th. Yeah, I'm running, but it feels like I'm just going through the motions. I'm not excited about it. I'm not motivated. I'm fighting with myself just to get out the door or on the treadmill. But, I really can't write. Writing was such an important part of my training, I can't help but think that not writing has been affecting my training.

So, in a search for answers I just read-over a bunch of old posts and the comments that I received on them and said to myself "where's THAT guy?" That guy is who I am. That is the guy I want to keep me company on my long runs, he's the one that I've lost along the way. There was a time when I was inspired to write my story in order to motivate and inspire others. To show that truly anything is possible. To prove that ordinary people can do extraordinary things! Sometime after I ran Boston, this blog turned into a place to hang my race reports. I've been wondering for a long time what happened to my blog, where did all of my readers go? Blog hangover? For a while I was looking for somewhere/someone to place the blame on. But now I realize it's just me. It's my fault. I've lost my writing mojo, just as I've lost my running mojo and I've got to do something to get it back soon! I've got a friggin' marathon to run in 50 days! 50 days. The Boston Marathon for fuck's sake! This actually means that as of tomorrow, I have exactly 28 days of hard training before starting my taper! OhgodwhathaveIdone?

The fact is I've set a lofty goal for myself. I haven't felt very confident in my ability to achieve this goal, and therefore have been avoiding accountability by not blogging. What this has led to has been a lack of confidence in my abilities during training runs and it's seeping into every area of my life. The fact is that I need to put this out there and keep putting it out there until I either make it a reality or fall flat on my face. The reality of the situation is that I need you. I need you all more than ever! I need all of my twitter friends, my fellow dailymiler's, my facebook friends, my IRL friends and my family. I need your support. I'm asking, neigh begging for it! You see, I put it all out there last year when my main goal was simply to finish. And when the time came that I hit the wall and texted to Lex that I was "done" at 21.5, the thought of all of you cheering me on (and some drunk BC kids, and some strong words from Lex) got me going again. I've been laboring through this training season with a secret. Well not so much a secret as I just haven't made it an issue...

This year I'm going to run a BQ in Boston! I know, I know, I've made mention of it here and there. But I just haven't put it out there. I realize now that I need to put it out there, and put it out there regularly. I need to rally the troops behind me if I am going to accomplish this goal. I know this means taking nearly an hour off of my first marathon time of 4:14:09. I will be 40 this year and my BQ time is 3:20:59, and with the new "rolling" registration procedure, in order to even have a chance at running Boston again, I have to run a sub-3:15:00 marathon. Although I love running for charity, and running for the Children's Hospital "Miles for Miracles" Team has added so much meaning to my running, it's just too much. I really want to run Boston without the pressure of raising money. It's too much added onto the stress of training. And considering I'm trying to raise $10,000 this year, I feel I will have accomplished all that I can as a fundraiser. Besides there are so many other things that require my full attention and efforts (my duties as race director for Lex's Run for the MDA for instance).

I just hope that this cry for help isn't too late, I hope it's not falling on deaf ears at this point. I hope there are a lot of people out there that have occasionally  checked back here and will be willing to read regularly again once I find my mojo again! Please let me know that you are still with me. I know you won't disappoint me!

Speaking of my fundraising, I've put together a virtual race to support my efforts. It's going to be a good time with lots of fun and prizes from my sponsor's! Check it out here - "36k for Miracles" Virtual Challenge


  1. Couple ideas:
    1. Don't sweat blog attrition; there are so many other avenues (dailymile, for instance), and people are saturated. Like it or not, blogs are in their waning years
    2. You've done a mini-taper; that means there should be mini-taper madness. Runners in taper mode experience the same sensation that makes caged birds start picking off their feathers. See it, know it for what it is, move on.
    3. Suck it up! You didn't knock out a pile of PRs in 2010 by being a wuss. So don't be a wuss. Be the bad m___erf___er you know yourself to be. Stop worrying, and get the f___ up!
    This peptalk brought to you by John at Hella Sound.

  2. You know you have it in you! You are able to put your mind to it and get out there. You will be able to BQ at Boston!! I know you can do it.

    Life sometimes throws us a few curves but you have always handled them in the past so you will handle this one. Put the time crunch behind you and just run. Do your runs like you love running - because, whether it feels like it now or not, you do.

    Don't worry about blogging. I have been doing it for over five years. I go through those periods where I post nothing or I post really short things or I post just photos. People who know you will check and check and check again (on their time) and see what is going on here.

    I am now regretting I cannot get to Boston to watch the race this year. I was so planning on it after having gone as a spectator last year. I, though, have other obligations this year.

  3. For me, I have found that my running approach changes with time.

    There are times that I have gone for the PR's and worked hard on my training. I used my GPS to log the miles and the times.

    There are times I focus on distance, and other times I have focused on short races.

    I've run with a group on a 200 mile relay.

    For a while, I would work on Trail races where time was not the goal.

    Currently, I'm just running to enjoy running. I don't use a watch, unless I'm running on an indoor track.

    I find I just need to change it up, and keep it fresh.

    I wish you well!

  4. I fond there's no other race where I've put as much pressure on myself as the marathon, and, as a result, I've mostly run bad marathons. The one time I ran just for the experience, I had fun and ran better than any of the others. We don't go into 10Ks thinking "I've just got to break xx:xx", but we start a race nearly 4 times as long thinking like that. Marathons are hard. If I were you. I might take a bit of the pressure off trying to BQ and instead focus on running a good race, enjoying the experience and doing something for a great cause. I'll be cheering for you, either way!

  5. Hang in there - I think these kinds of slumps are natural, especially in the dark months of winter. Just rest in the knowledge that it will come back when your body is ready. You are a runner and you love this stuff. Run for awhile in ways that just make you happy - worry about the speed when your body tells you "go". You can do this.

  6. Funk Shmunk. You my badass friend are a rockstar. This is just a blip and you'll be back 110% in no time! It's going to be a great year beyond Boston. I can't wait to be a part of it with you and the rest of our little crew!

  7. First of all I want to echo what Melody said.
    2nd of all - take the PRESSURE OFF OF YOURSELF.
    I've been on a streak of PR's for 5K's as you know and yes I reviewed my PR for a 10K - in 2008 when I was just beginning to run and as I told Chris Russell today when he asked me if I PR'ed - before I knew any better. I did a 1:26:14.
    When I went out for Hyannis today all I could think about was the fact that I WAS BACK OUT THERE and I was going to see what my body could do. I was astounded that I took 6 minutes off of Tufts '10 but Doug it wouldn't have mattered what I would have done. I was running a 10K in the dead of winter and went through grueling training to get there. I wanted to celebrate all of my training and all the goals I had accomplished to date - like running 3 10K's in four months and almost a race a month since last June.
    So here's what I want you to do
    1. Make a list of everything you HAVE accomplished on the roads and off. Success breeds success.
    2. Stop beating yourself up. Doug you have had a helluva year with a newborn child and Lex's surgery. These aren't excuses these are reality. Remember when I called you and said Tom could run for Bryna - maybe the timing wasn't right and you said you were gonna do it.
    Let's focus on the real goal here - you are diverting your energy away from what is important - who you are running for and I bet dollars to donuts (which neither of us eats - smile) that when you get focused on your real goal - the fund raising and the running will be so much easier.
    3. Do you meditate? No I don't mean sitting cross legged and saying ohm - I mean getting still and being with yourself and looking how incredible a man you are. Review your life story focusing on all the wonderful things you have done for yourself (losing and keeping off weight and running) and others - family, friends (like me - you know the strong work Mary gal)
    And then I dare you to write a new blog post! Triple dog dare

  8. Dude you rock.

    Take a deep breath. Then run.

    See you next week at Stu's.

  9. I know the feeling of a lost running mojo Doug. One way that I tried to break out of it was to change the way I look at running. Instead of getting absorbed by the objectives (paces, heart rates, times, mileage), make time to reconnect with the world around you, other runners and to get back in tune with your body.
    One of your weekly runs you might leave the watch at home, find a new route, take a new partner or just connecting with other runners you pass.
    Its a great way of rediscovering the simple joy of what running is all about. Once we get that right, our body is capable of great things.
    You might like to read more about Experience Running here: http://www.experiencerunning.net/origins-of-experiencing-running-part-i