What My Run Reminded Me About My Writing Practice

  • She has been on the consistent running train since the beginning of 2021 (or maybe longer) but had a similar history with running to me.
  • She uses the Garmin Coach app so I could ask her how to do things if I couldn’t find the answers I needed with a Google search.
  • I had a relationship with her already and felt comfortable being vulnerable with her when things were going well and also when things were not going well.

Setting a New Goal and Creating a New Process

Before, During, and After

  • I consistently showed up for months for the training process.
  • I reached out to my support person when I needed to.
  • I picked the most favorable day possible to do this big run.
  • I dressed appropriately to reduce my discomfort as much as possible.
  • I didn’t push myself too hard.
  • I pushed myself just enough to challenge myself, but not lose heart or strength.
  • I listened to music because I knew that would help — even though I had never done it before. But music always soothes me and brings me a sense of confidence and hope. I used that when I needed it.
  • I leaned on my reserves and all that I had done before.
  • I talked nicely to myself when I needed to slow down and walk.
  • I praised myself when I ran for longer than I thought I could.
  • I allowed myself to feel joy and a sense of accomplishment for what I had done.
  • There was a small voice that reminded me that I have friends who run marathons all of the time, but I reminded that voice that I don’t run marathons all of the time and this is a big deal.
  • I stretched after so that I wouldn’t be sore and to ensure that I would be able to continue with my training. 7 miles was not my goal, it was just part of the process!

What My Run Reminded Me about My Writing Practice

How Can You Plan for Before, During, and After in Your Writing Practice?

  • Create a consistent time for writing and block it on your calendar. Adjust if you need to without shame.
  • Set up your writing space ahead of time before you sit down to write — maybe even the night before if you are a morning writer. Make sure your laptop or notebook is ready in your space. Do you need a cup of tea or coffee or a glass of water at your desk? Set the cup or glass out on your kitchen counter before you go to bed. And if you have a programmable coffee maker, set it up to be ready when you come into the kitchen in the morning.
  • Do you need a cozy blanket to put over your lap? Do you need that favorite scarf to create a sense of safeness for you? Put these in your writing space.
  • When you sit down to write, make sure there are no other distractions — like notifications on your laptop or phone — vying for your time.
  • Go slow. Speed up when you need to, go slow when you need to. The pace is the pace. You are here for your allotted time (20, 30, or 60 minutes) not a certain number of words.
  • Use your outline — you know your route. Your outline or a bulleted plan can be your best friend in your writing practice. It gives you the flexibility and freedom you need to write within it or to choose to go outside of it.
  • Join a writing community like The Writing Practice so you have someone with you virtually when you are writing. You don’t have to be alone. You can create a safe haven of support around you.
  • When you finish your session, notice if you have ideas about where you want to go and what you want to write next time. Jot these down as a compassionate gift to your future self and your next writing session.
  • Acknowledge what you have accomplished! Not everyone steps on this path and you are not only placing your feet on the path, you are moving and making progress.

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Author, Publisher, Coach mixing compassionate practice with writing. Renaissance Woman & Lover of Books, Haikus, Nature & Moving My Body… My Voice Is My Art

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Heather Doyle Fraser

Heather Doyle Fraser

Author, Publisher, Coach mixing compassionate practice with writing. Renaissance Woman & Lover of Books, Haikus, Nature & Moving My Body… My Voice Is My Art