The Running Mantra That Is Helping Me Push Through Discomfort

One of my greatest fears is that I'm a quitter. If I'm being totally honest, my habit of taking the easy road is the reason why running resonates so deeply with me. Running taught me that just because something feels difficult or even impossible doesn't mean that it's not something worth pursuing. You can't fake your way through a half or full marathon, you have to do the work and running has helped me realize that I can't live myself playing it safe or trying to be perfect. If you work hard and believe in yourself, just about anything really is possible.

No one likes to fail but I really believe that the only way you'll fail is if you fail to try. Goals are great but when you focus only on an end result, you throw patience out the window and you're destined for a tough time. I know because for weeks, I've been worried about my goal Boston Marathon qualifying goal instead of just focusing on where I'm at in the process or what my Coach has put on my training plan today. I know better but sometimes fear is louder than reason.

I've been struggling a lot with doubt and my own personal self imposed limits but one mantra that has helped me stay present when I want to pull back so that I can catch my breath is, "I can do this". Those four words have helped me give every run, regardless of how difficult it is, the good ol' college try. Something Dr. Bob said to me that really made sense was being mindful of when I feel unsure of myself. That doubts are normal, it's up to me that I still give every intimidating run my best effort.  

These past 3 months of BQ training have been transformative, challenging, painful and exhilarating and we're only half way there! The only thing I know for sure is that I'm wasting my time if I don't believe that I can do this. It isn't always easy to believe in yourself but if I don't, why should I expect anyone else to? 

 Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.


Kelly Roberts

It all started when a silly joke made headlines back in 2014 when I took selfies with hot guys “hottie hunting” my way through the New York City Half Marathon. But ironically enough, I haven't always been a runner. As the self-proclaimed former President of the "I f*cking hate running club", I spent most of my life finding ways to avoid physical activity. Growing up, I missed over 70 days of PE my senior year. Working out was something I thought I had to suffer through in order to lose weight. 

Then, in 2009, my younger brother passed away unexpectedly and struggling to manage my grief, I gained more than 75 pounds. With the weight gain came a new fight to regain my sense of self and learn to love the body I saw when I looked in the mirror. Then one Thanksgiving morning, drowning in grief and self doubt, I decided to go for a run. I didn't make it half way down my street before I had to stop to walk but for some reason, struggling forward made more sense than getting back into bed. It turns out that running is a lot like grief, neither ever really get easier, you just get stronger. 

Over time, I realized that while some people are in fact born runners, others are made. I created this blog Run, Selfie, Repeat and my new podcast by the same name with the hopes to inspire others to say yes to themselves while making them laugh hysterically because laughing, in my opinion, is the solution to everything. 

Named by Women's Running as one of twenty women who are changing the sport of running and by Competitor Magazine as one of 12 Influential and inspiring runners under 30, my mission is to inspire others to get embrace a healthy lifestyle and pursue the strongest version of themselves possible.