Determined athlete running and thinkingThe other day my ipod shuffle wasn’t working so I did my run in “silence”.  The good news is that it didn’t affect my motivation or speed or anything.  The bad news is that I figured out I’m a pretty weird guy…

You see, without my audio, my brain simply started thinking (I hear that’s what brain’s do when left to themselves).

And…

oh my God…

I’m insane.

I kept thinking the same things over and over.  Literally. It wasn’t a “worry thought” either – just a random thought about how my office is set up.  So I kept repeating the same phrases over and over.  “What if I moved my desk to the south side…. What if I moved my desk to the south side and repositioned my monitor… what if I repositioned my monitor… what if I moved my desk to the south side…”

I’m not exaggerating. This is what my brain did.  For miles and miles.

Now, I managed to force myself to switch to a new idea (which I also repeated incessantly like a woodpecker too dumb to know it was pecking a metal mailbox).

But around mile 4, that same freggin’ office thought came back and I couldn’t shake it for a mile.

Enough Of My Psychosis, What About YOUR Psychosis?

Now, you don’t read WorldFitnessNetwork to hear what a psycho I am.  But I’m guessing you are now curious about what kind of a “thinker” YOU are.

Here are few thinker types for you to consider.

Most of us will span a few of these, either alternating from day to day or even flitting from one persona to another in the same run.

To see which you are, make sure you are unplugging from your mp3 player – you can’t truly think with external input in your ears.

  1. The repeater – whatever thought pops into your head, you repeat it over and over; just when you think you’ve moved onto a new thought, you realize you are back to repeating the previous thought; this is me most of the time.
  2. The randomizer – you are like ADHD on cocaine.
  3. The workaholic – you go over your work.
  4. The planner – you think through your day ahead of time.
  5. The reflector – you reflect on how your day went (or about yesterday if you are a morning runner).
  6. The basketcase – you think about all the problems in your life and end up more stressed after your run than when you started.
  7. The perfectionist - you work over a particular issue ad infinitum and then rework it.  And rework it again.  And again.
  8. The freak – you might be one of these people who get all freaked out with the endorphins that come with running and start having odd visions and bizarre thoughts.  I won’t list examples here.  You know who you are.  And stay away from my road.
  9. The gamer – you count the cars that pass; or see how many drivers you can get to wave at you; or you search for all the walnut trees along your route.
  10. The milestoner – to make it through, you keep resetting distance markers:  “Just one more telephone pole”.  “Make it to the next mailbox.” Etc. until you finish your run.
  11. The elite master – you think about your form; your pace; how your legs feel; how your stride is; how the hair on your arms is affecting your wind friction (ok maybe not that).
Which one are you?  Or do you have another type I should add?
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