Hey look at that picture. It was one of the happiest days of last year (maybe my adult life, but that just makes my life seem really sad LOLOLOLOL). Look at those smiling faces. WHAT A SIMPLER TIME.

Anyway, that’s not exactly what this post is about. Last year I was working on the mental side of running. I wanted to make the transition from just running to dedicated training. And getting into a good mental place while training has been hard. My entire life I have talked myself out of uncomfortable workouts, talked myself down on tough paces, or convinced myself that I was too tired to finish a workout. I don’t think I finished one workout in high school track (sorry Mr. MC).

But I feel like I made really good progress last year. I read some sports motivation/psychology books. I listened to interviews with athletes. I got to a place where I could at least have a conversation with myself when discomfort set in. Did I still talk myself out of things? Obviously, Now-Nicole always wins over Future-Nicole. Like right now, as I am typing this, I have eaten 6 packs of fruit snacks. Now-Nicole is loving it. Future-Nicole is going to be gassy and poor Future-Saffy is doomed to an all nighter in a dutch oven. WHATEVER I AM A GROWN WOMAN AND I CAN MAKE MY OWN CHOICES.

So back to my point. I thought I was getting into a good place mentally for running. And I thought I’d crush the NYC Marathon and then immediately witness the first woman win the presidency. But we all know how that went #brokenlegs #drumpf. And now with the flurry of EOs and FUCKING DISGUSTING MESSAGES coming out of the white house (it’s lower case until this shit changes), my motivation for anything besides making game plans for political action is almost non-existent.

But, running has literally saved my life before, and I can’t let it go. I feel like it levels me out and also makes me stronger for the #inevitablewar. But my gaslight levels are high. LIKE SO HIGH–I HAVE NO CONFIDENCE IN MY OWN JUDGEMENT ANYMORE. So my emotions can be described at alternatively stable? (WHAT DOES STABLE EVEN MEAN?!) And my alternatively stable mindset has left me crying during workouts in the past months. And I don’t mean like weeping or like, listening to Fast Car and reflecting on life kind of crying. I’m talking surprise crying. Like a fart you’ve been holding in since that meeting at 11:30 and it needs to escape by 3:00 or you’ll have a SERIOUS problem on your hands.

So if you don’t want to spontaneously cry during workouts, consider the following:

1. DO NOT WATCH STEP MOM WHILE RUNNING ON THE TREADMILL. The security person at Planet Fitness is going to LOVE watching me alternate between crying and laughing at myself for crying for 45 minutes.

2. Don’t listen to the January 22, 2017 episode of This American Life and the young trumpers (LOWER CASE) that brag about “memeing” him into the white house.

3. Don’t pay attention to the young man watching Fox News on the treadmill in front of yours. 28 minutes contemplating why he’s watching it isn’t worth your panic or hypothetical epistemic assessment.

4. Don’t listen to yesterday’s Brian Leher episode. There’s almost 100% chance you’ll want to stop running and lay face down on the pavement. I highly recommend listening when not running though. Maybe listen when you’re sitting?

5. Avoid most movies. I’m not going to lie, unless I’m watching How I Met Your Mother on the treadmill, there’s a really good chance of tears.

6. Don’t watch Diners Drive Ins and Dives. So this isn’t explicitly about the current administration. But you’ll remember there are people that like Guy Fieri sincerely and that this is a thing.

So stay safe out there Big Apple Birds. Thanks for reading my rambling thoughts. And if you follow me on Strava, I’m sure you see that I’m really good at working my garmin. Perhaps one day you’ll see “Afternoon Run” immediately followed by “Afternoon Rage Cry”.