Talk Yourself Into It

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Do you ever find that you talk yourself out of a workout before it’s really even begun?  I caught myself doing that today – I was only 100 meters into my swim and all these de-motivating thoughts began to race through my head.  “I’m tired.  My arms hurt.  My back is sore.”


Blah blah blahitty blah blah.   Shut up and swim, Caitlin.


So I swam.  I did 1,000 meters, which was 300 less than I was hoping for, but I had to get out of the pool and make a conference call.


Pre-workout snack was toast with sunflower buttah.


And post-workout snack was a peanut butter and banana smoothie:


At the smoothie place, I also picked up a packet of Vanilla Gu for Sunday’s triathlon.  I didn’t have any fuel during my last sprint tri, and I definitely think I suffered on the bike as a result.  My plan is to eat this during the first transition for a boost of energy.  Considering that I haven’t rode my bike for over a month (um, whoops), I’m going to need it.


Come back to lunch – I have a fun Q&A interview with a blind ultramarathoner named Simon.  Prepare to be inspired!



  • Stephanie @ Food and Fitness 4 Real July 12, 2011, 10:32 am

    This is so true for everyone who works out and I just wrote a post about this last week. Sometimes you just have to suck it up and do it. Even if you don’t want to. I remind myself every time that I feel great once I finish a workout and I feel crappy if I skip one. So I do it anyway.
    Glad to see your post because I do not want to go for a run a lunch, but I am going to do it anyway. See, your workout was good for you and good for me today!

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen July 12, 2011, 10:36 am

    I do that too often! I literally have to tell myself to shut up too. It works. tough love.

  • Laura July 12, 2011, 10:40 am

    One pack of 100 cal GU for your race? What are the distances? Will that even make a difference?

    • Caitlin July 12, 2011, 10:46 am

      750 meter swim, 16 mile bike, 5 K run – oh yes, it will definitely make a difference. By the time the swim starts, I probably won’t have eaten for 2.5 hours, so halfway through the bike, it will be like 3.5 hours. I’ll be running on fumes at that point. Taking calories in means I’ll be able to use calories from food, not from glycogen stores, which is much easier for the body.

      • Laura July 12, 2011, 10:52 am

        I meant more I would have thought you would need more. I train with triathletes – my hubs is a duathlete – and our coaches endorse us taking more in esp during a race. Are you taking in Gatorade or Cytomax as well.

        • Caitlin July 12, 2011, 10:54 am

          Oh, I see 🙂 I drink coconut water during the bike for re-hydration purposes. I would probably take in more calories if the race was longer, but my stomach tends to get upset these days if I eat too much. Hopefully I can keep down 1 Gu pack!

  • Holly @ The Runny Egg July 12, 2011, 10:44 am

    That happens to me all the time — I start telling myself that I should rest so I don’t injure myself — but I know I am just lying to myself and I need to just get my workout done.

    I am looking forward to the ultra-marathoner post!

  • Carolina John July 12, 2011, 10:46 am

    For maximum engergy, take one gu before you start swimming and one in the middle of the bike (for a sprint). You should stay fueled for the run that way too. I like to tape the gu to the top bar of my bike so I don’t lose the time in transition taking the gel and don’t lose the bike speed trying to open the package without littering while riding. Just rip it from the top bar of the bike and chug that sucker. then wash it down with water from a water bottle also on your bike and you don’t even have to stop pedaling to refuel.

  • Beth (Well I'll Be) July 12, 2011, 10:47 am

    I do totally try to talk myself into shorter workouts. Usually once I get moving though I’m fine. The initial 10 minutes or so are usually the worst!

  • Rae July 12, 2011, 10:50 am

    I don’t know how comfortable you are eating while riding, but I usually eat a gu halfway through the ride. Have breakfast a few hours before, maybe a banana or something small about 15 minutes before the swim, then the gu halfway through the bike (or, if you prefer liquid, Gatroade or Ironman Perform work well for cals). Should fuel you well!!

  • Megan @ Life As Megan Knows It July 12, 2011, 10:53 am

    hahah I do that all the time.. Sometimes I truly believe working out / running / swimming is such a mental game.

  • chloe @ 321delish July 12, 2011, 10:54 am

    I have a friend who recently led a blind triathlete in an olympic tri! So amazing!

  • Ally July 12, 2011, 10:57 am

    Have you tried the Mocha Shot Blok? Tastes like coffee frosting, and it has caffeine in it. Guh. Amazing.

    • Caitlin July 12, 2011, 2:00 pm

      I tried it before but it wasn’t my fav – I wish they all had caffeine in them, though!

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) July 12, 2011, 11:00 am

    I could easily talk myself into the workout since I know I will feel better about myself after I just do it!

  • Michelle (The Runner's Plate) July 12, 2011, 11:03 am

    The vanilla bean-flavored Gu is one of my favorite flavors!

  • Yolie @ Practising Wellness July 12, 2011, 11:11 am

    Well done for talking yourself into it, Caitlin! I did that this morning too…I was sooo tired when I woke up for some reason, and debated not going to the gym for cardio like I intended. But then I reminded myself that exercise is so energising and uplifting, and decided that I could just do 20 minutes and see how I feel. Well, I ended up doing 40 minutes of intervals, having a great time the more and more I did, and feeling so much better and bouncier for it! 😀 Woo hoo! Looking forward to the Q&A…sounds amazing! xyx

  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife July 12, 2011, 11:13 am

    I usually talk myself out of a workout before it begins….but then I think about how horrible I’ll feel all day long if I don’t do it (i.e. tired, run down, etc.) and then I get up and go. Works like a charm!

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat July 12, 2011, 11:17 am

    Ahh I totally hear ya on just talking yourself into it. For me, my morning workouts aren’t really a struggle because I somehow manage to get my body to the gym before it’s awake enough to know what I’m doing to it! But afternoon/evening is another story. Sometimes, the hardest part is just getting yourself there. I think it’s always worth it in the end though.. even after you start the workout, if you only do a tiny bit of what you planned, you always feel at least a bit better!

  • Leanne (Bride to Mrs,) July 12, 2011, 11:23 am

    Good job for getting your swim done! Those self-defeating thoughts are hard to shut up sometimes!

  • sarah k @ the pajama chef July 12, 2011, 11:24 am

    i totally agree…the hardest part is often getting going. 🙂 way to go!

  • Johanna B July 12, 2011, 11:25 am

    I’m so glad I’m not the only one who has to fight off the trash talking because positive self-talk is so important to success.

  • Hillary July 12, 2011, 11:29 am

    I am 100% guilty of this—in fact, I was guilty of this just this morning! My alarm went off and I was like “Eh. I don’t want to run. It looks cloudy. I’m tired.” I let myself sleep for another ten minutes and contemplated giving up my run altogether. Then I finally was like, “Hillary. Get your ass out of bed. At least run for 30 minutes.” And so I did! And guess what? I feel awesome. Weird how that happens, right? ; )

  • Liz @ IHeartVegetables July 12, 2011, 11:29 am

    Ohh I’ve never had sunflower butter! But it sounds tasty, I love toast 🙂

  • Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} July 12, 2011, 11:31 am

    I have to talk myself into workouts more than I like to admit!

  • Jamie Hower July 12, 2011, 11:32 am

    Hey Caitlin! Reading your post today reminded me of myself yesterday…until I read the following:,7120,s6-243-588–13970-1-1-2,00.html

    Hard to make excuses when there are gals like this! Have a great day! Cheers!

    • Caitlin July 12, 2011, 7:40 pm


  • Army Amy* July 12, 2011, 11:47 am

    I’m looking forward to the Q&A! I just finished reading about the recent Medal of Honor recipient, so this is turning into a very inspiring day!*

  • Victoria (District Chocoholic) July 12, 2011, 11:52 am

    You wouldn’t believe how many times I want to get out of the pool after 200-400 meters. But then I just tell myself that my hair is already wet, no sense abandoning the workout.

  • Shannon @ Mon Amour July 12, 2011, 11:54 am

    I am the best at talking myself out of things. It is something I really need to work on

  • Christine @ BookishlyB July 12, 2011, 12:43 pm

    Ok, non-swimmer here. When I look at the picture you have up top, what’s 1000 meters? How many laps?

    • Caitlin July 12, 2011, 7:40 pm

      One way is 50 meters, so out and back is 100, so 10 out and backs.

  • Cat @Breakfast to Bed July 12, 2011, 12:46 pm

    I sometimes have to literally say to myself “shut the f up and run”

  • julia July 12, 2011, 1:14 pm

    I would def try to take in liquid calories if your tummy can’t really handle food. I try to take in a gu pre swim and another one pre bike. That leaved enough time for digestion before the run. I definitely think you need more than 100 cals for the race…. It will help a LOT with your “peppiness” level. just my two cents! GOod luck with your race! Im doing my first half ironman this weekend….yikes!

  • skinnyrunner July 12, 2011, 1:26 pm

    vanilla bean GU is one of my favorite flavors behind espresso love.

  • Meesh July 12, 2011, 3:36 pm

    I talk myself out of workouts all the time. I wish it was just as easy to talk myself back into them!!!

  • Molly @ RDexposed July 12, 2011, 5:57 pm

    Dang girl. You know how to live life to it’s fullest-not skipping on nut/seed butter!

  • Lindsey @ Gluten-Free Lindsey July 12, 2011, 6:30 pm

    I pretty much have to talk myself into it every time! 🙂

  • Amy July 12, 2011, 7:23 pm

    I highly suggest Honey Stingers– they are like fruit snacks for kids, but made of honey and other organic ingredients! I believe honey is one of the only foods that can be immediately used as energy without having to be metabolized in your digestive system– got me bonk free through the NYC marathon! Try em!

  • Laurel July 12, 2011, 7:48 pm

    Ah, I have to do the same thing, I think we all do since we’re human 🙂 And I have an easily upset tummy also- I feel pukey after everything. One Gu if my body really needs it seems to be ok though.

  • Meghan July 12, 2011, 9:46 pm

    I normally never talk myself out of a workout but I totally did tonight. I got to the gym and was all ready to do my kettlebell workout and there was NO space on the mats and the kettlebell weight that I use was no where to be found. I was soooo close to leaving…but i didn’t 🙂

  • Mary July 12, 2011, 10:47 pm

    gooooood luck!!

  • Stefanie July 13, 2011, 1:37 am

    With all of the other stressors in my day my run is usually the thing I look most forward to. I talk it up in my mind and get really excited about it, and if I’m really not feeling it, sometimes I gotta fake it to make it. “I am so excited for my run, it is going to be great,” repeat.

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