Facing My Fears

Once upon a time I was scared to run.

Then I faced my fear, laced up my running shoes, and look at me now.  I simply cannot imagine my life without running in it.

I heart running.

Running has become a rather comfortable activity for me.  I feel at home, like myself, relaxed and happy when I am running.  These are all good things, but these things also have kept me from pushing myself into some other scary areas.  Areas known as my fears.  Areas where I want to push myself out of my comfort zone a little bit.  Where I want to at least try to see if I am possibly missing out on something else I might love.  Where I can find out that I can do something that I am afraid of.

So I am putting a few of those fears out there for blog land to see.  Maybe that means I will start tackling them in my off season, and see if I can conquer some of these fears or in the least try them so I can say I at least gave it a shot instead of ducking away and hiding. 

Sept 039

Riding my bike up Mt. Diablo

Sure I have been running up the mountain lately, but I have never ventured up it on my bike which is a very popular thing to do for cyclists in the area.  For some reason over the last year I have developed this huge mental block when it comes to hills on the bike. 

But this past weekend, when I didn’t have any choice but to ride up the hills, I did it.  And it wasn’t that hard.  Chris kept saying those hills were steeper (although shorter) than Diablo and I have created this huge thing in my head over nothing and I need to get over it. 

So I need to do it.  I need to ride my bike up the mountain. 

And I will.

Sept 085


Hah I know, who is scared of yoga?  ME. 

I am not a big person on classroom environments.  I also get bored very fast.  I also can’t touch my toes.  All these things make me scared of yoga.  But being an Ambassador for a primarily yoga store and having access to classes at my new job, it’s something I need to do.  Soon.

And I will.

Sept 080


I know I have professed I am not going to the dark side of triathlon land and I am sticking to that.  But that doesn’t mean I can’t give the pool a try. 

For whatever reason I am afraid of water.  Maybe it’s from flunking pollywogs back when I was a kid or maybe it’s from getting thrown into a lake when I really didn’t want to be.  For whatever reason I have convinced myself that I cannot swim.  Chris has been trying to get me to go to the pool with him for over a year and I just need to do it.

And I will.

What are some of your fears?  Have you faced any lately?

Let’s see when I start checking things off this list!  Yikes.      

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31 Responses to Facing My Fears

  1. katie September 28, 2011 at 7:11 am #

    swimming IS scary.

  2. Kristen (inspiredbydooce) September 28, 2011 at 7:20 am #

    I can’t touch my toes. I get bored easily. I have a hard time “quieting my mind.” This is why I LOVE yoga. It is such a challenge. It forces me to ignore the type A part of my brain and it is humbling, freeing, and relaxing. It forces me to just “be” instead of “do.” I hope you find a class and a teacher who helps you face your yoga fears!!

    I’m thinking of joining a gym. I find that terrifying.

  3. Alisa September 28, 2011 at 7:28 am #

    First, hills can be scary but are also sooooooo rewarding—be nike—just do it =). Don’t think about it, just do it. Be prepared to take some breaks and make sure you go with someone who is willing to go at your pace or at least wait for you at certain points.

    Second, the pool is the best thing in the world. It’s another just do it’s! Most people swimming in pools at the gym or outdoor rec centers aren’t olympic swimmers, many are learning themselves. Have Chris teach you the basic pool ettitique and you’ll be just fine.

    PS Once you start with the swimming there will be no going back…you say you’ll never do a tri but once you get over the pool fear you’re so going to do one and probably several and probably kick the crap out of most experienced folks times b/c you have such a running strength!

  4. Lauren September 28, 2011 at 7:58 am #

    I just started overcoming my fear of distance running this year! I LOVE it and I’m so glad I had a great group to help push me past my fear. First marathon is Dec 3…we’ll see what I say then :)

  5. wymberley September 28, 2011 at 8:02 am #

    I recently did a post similar to this but you did a better job of finding the fears you can totally tackle. I try to tackle fears and then…get anxious and usually move on. but running has become my go to for sure! I have always dreamed of being a runner and now I am one! And I like it. Bonus.
    I think yoga would be really fun in a classroom!

  6. onelittletrigirl September 28, 2011 at 8:12 am #

    I see it now- you will do a trithalon next year!

    Swimming is amazing. Honestly, I don’t think there is any other time I feel so free.

  7. RunToTheFinish September 28, 2011 at 8:18 am #

    This is exactly what I chose to do starting in February and it has made a HUGE difference. Now I love running, but have realized I love taking on these new challenges and really enjoy them more than I thought possible

  8. marlene September 28, 2011 at 8:27 am #

    I like where this is going. :)

    • Kristen (inspiredbydooce) September 28, 2011 at 9:00 am #

      First you were all “oh, no dark side for me” and now you’re practically Darth Vader ;-)

  9. Marie @ Chocolate and Wine September 28, 2011 at 8:37 am #

    I’m scared of water too!! I don’t swim ever ever ever and when I get forced to, I hate every second. Doesn’t look like there are many tri’s in my future.

    xo Marie
    Chocolate & Wine

  10. Jen September 28, 2011 at 8:44 am #

    Right there with ya on the swimming part. I used to get dunked by my older brothers friends when I was little and I hate going underwater. Plus never had formal swim lessons so it’s to the waist for me and no further! Not a yoga fan either, to me it’s boring but I know it’s good for your body.

  11. Kristine @ Running on Hungry September 28, 2011 at 8:58 am #

    I’ll bike ride with you any time! I do the Marin Headlands hills sometimes (holy hard!) and while they still scare me… I’m learning to like them more and more!

  12. Jaime September 28, 2011 at 9:01 am #

    I was scared of swimming too. But since I have a stress fracture, I was bascially forced to swim if I wanted to stay active. I actually really enjoy swimming now. It reminds me a lot of running because you can zone out and clear your thoughts.

  13. Kristin September 28, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    So I biked up Mt. Diablo once just to say I had done it when I first got a road bike. Like you I wasn’t really trained for cycling, and I’m not going to lie, it was HARD (and I even had a triple!) and I stopped quite a few times so it took a couple hours. But seriously, it will be fine. It will be nice to have Chris to either ride with or act as pickup wagon… when I did it, I made it up just fine then blew out my tire 1/4 of the way down and had to hitch a ride with the park rangers. That was sad.

  14. Nelly September 28, 2011 at 11:18 am #

    That is great that you are conquering your fears! Being injured forced me to go into all these new areas, because I couldn’t do anything else. So now I swim, do yoga, do rehab exercises and have tried water running. It is daunting sometimes trying to attack a new activity, but you just have to attack it no matter what other people say. I still sometimes am wary about entering the pool, because I’m afraid of what other people in the pool think of me. I know I stand out as someone who is clueless in the pool, because I’m one of the few people who wears board shorts to go swim! lol

    The post below is basically exactly what you talk about above – injuries=new activities

  15. Wendi @ A Southern Yogi September 28, 2011 at 11:53 am #

    I love swimming and i’m not super good at it. The thing I like about it is that it’s so much gentler on my body, i feel good when I’m done. I also love yoga. I do hatha yoga which is NOT hot or vinyasa style, and the funny thing is, it feels easy but the next day I’m always sore. Also, the funny thing is, I have seen my body change more from yoga than anything else. So weird. Now I’m in yoga teacher training and loving it. I love riding my bike too but don’t have as much time. I did my very first tri, short short sprint, this year and liked it a lot better than just banging out miles and I love running. I don’t know what made it different, but I liked it.

  16. Carolina John September 28, 2011 at 12:46 pm #

    I’m very very cautious about road cycling outside. As much as i love triathlons I still stick to my indoor training for safety most of the time. As the fall creeps in and we get cooler temps and changing leaves it brings me outside more often though.

  17. courtney (pancakes and postcards) September 28, 2011 at 5:12 pm #

    I’m trying to face a fear of… biking to work! I hate being so dependent on the damn bus but I’m kind of scared of dying. I’m going to start. As soon as I buy a helmet. :)

  18. Jordan September 28, 2011 at 6:28 pm #

    Not running related but I had a huge fear of baking bread. Yesterday I told my self I needed to learn somthing new so I made 4 loafs of bagett and they were so good!!!

  19. Ginny September 29, 2011 at 5:09 am #

    The key to yoga is to find a GREAT teacher, which is REALLY hard to do. If you find a good teacher, you will be challenged, but not bored. A good teacher knows runners CAN NOT touch their toes. Although it’s hard, we should never compare ourselves to non-running yogis in the room. I’m thankful to have a super teacher. For me, yoga is a MUST to keep me running without issues creeping up. Shop around and find a class that fits your needs. You will NOT be disappointed if you find the right one.

  20. Katie September 29, 2011 at 7:39 am #

    Swimming and yoga are sooooo scary for me too! Swimming shouldnt be because it was one of my favorite things to do as a kid….why the change?! Yoga, I just cannot wrap my head around. They are telling me to focus on my breathing and clear my mind and I’m frantically making a to-do list in my head. Guess I’m just the kind of person who NEEDS yoga! Haha

  21. runner26 September 29, 2011 at 8:18 am #

    good for you!! i am definitely scared of cycling. mostly of being hit by a car or falling. i seriously hold onto the brakes when going on the downhill! but it still think it’s cool and would love to do a serious TRI someday. i am fine with swimming and running is my thing. so it’s just the cycling i’d have to get comfortable with.

    good luck with these goals!

  22. CapeCod_Runner September 29, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    My big fear is running on ice and snow, both of which are difficult to avoid in the Northeast for about 4-5 months out of the year (!) After falling and breaking my wrist during an icy run, I got mad and was determined to not let the elements keep me cooped up on the treadmill in the winter….so I finally tried out a bunch of traction devices for my sneakers and last winter felt pretty confident that I wouldn’t wipe out so easily with my trusty gear in place. I’m not completely over this fear, but I’m actually looking forward to winter because it is SO magical to run outside after a snowstorm!
    Thanks for this thread – it’s good to compare strategies and successes :-)

  23. Cate September 29, 2011 at 4:11 pm #

    Cycling makes me nervous… even though I used to do triathlons a lot, I haven’t done much cycling at all in the past 2 years, and the other day I saw a cyclist get hit right by my house. I don’t want to just stick to the trainer…I need to face this fear!

  24. Rosa - Fitness, Food, Fulfilled September 29, 2011 at 5:00 pm #

    I love this post! And we’re on the same page with swimming. I’m petrified of water and hate being in the pool unless I can touch the bottom.

    I’ve promised my husband that I’ll learn so that our kids don’t pick up on my fear and learn to hate it like I do. I would hate to pass that fear on to them when there really isn’t a need.

  25. Wifey September 29, 2011 at 6:41 pm #

    LOVE this. Yoga scares the mess out of me, too. I might be the most inflexible person. Ever.

    Good for you. Go for you list!

    Winks & Smiles,

  26. Naomi September 30, 2011 at 5:54 am #

    I love swimming and yoga and so glad you want to do them more often! I think you’ll find they’ll make you an ever stronger runner (if that’s even possible!). I’m about to invest in a bike – I haven’t been on one since my 12-year BMX days – definitely terrified but ready for it.

  27. Fair Weather Runner September 30, 2011 at 11:36 am #

    i hope you find a fantastic yoga class that keeps your interest. i love yoga, but some of the classes CAN be a snore. yay for venturing out, i have been too lately. i started swimming too. it’s honestly so relaxing once you get the rhythm down. best of luck!


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