Posted in Running, Thoughts, Training

Marathon Monday – Resilience and Running

Resilience – noun

  1. the power or ability to return to the original form, position, etc., after being bent, compressed, or stretched; elasticity.
  2. the ability to recover readily from illness, depression, adversity; toughness

Resilient. Something I’ve struggled with in the past and something that I still struggle with everyday. It’s not easy for me to bounce back from failures, heartbreak, disappointments, and whatever else gets me down.

But as I’m about halfway done with my marathon training, I can definitely say this.

Running has made me more resilient. 

It’s trained me to (sometimes) push through the mental pain and go for that distance. It’s made me believe that even though there’s a huge obstacle in the way (ie a hill or just a huge workload), I can overcome it and it’ll be fine in the end. I may not see it right away, but it’ll come to light eventually.

Runner’s World had an article a few years back on training your brain for resilience. There was a study from UCSD that studied brain patterns from different people (Navy Seals, olympic athletes, and your average Joe) in response to an adverse stimuli. In short, those trained to deal with long periods of stress like the Navy Seals and olympic athletes were better able to deal with the stimuli.

This article combined with how I’ve been feeling these days has made me really believe that I am a bit more resilient because of all my training. Maybe one day, I’ll have the brain patterns of an olympian. 🙂

On another note, I ran 16 miles this past weekend. It was 2 more miles than I’ve ever run in one go. It was tough and there were definitely a tear or two shed. But I finished the mileage set for myself and the feeling afterwards was great. I felt on top of the world and although my legs felt a bit sore, it was nothing a trip to In N Out couldn’t fix.

Along my morning run, I saw fellow runners busting a gut out there. It was motivational. I even gave some runners a smile or a thumbs up as we passed each other by. By mile 13.5, I started feeling the fatigue. Someone out there was looking out for me because that’s when I saw the cutest thing. IMG_5986

They were 4 synchronized little pups connected by their collars following their owner on the strand. These pups motivated me to finish the last 2.5 miles.

Halfway through training and I can’t wait to see what the other half has in store for me.





My name is Mai and I am a recent PhD graduate. :) When not hard at work, I can be found training for a race, traveling the world, or talking about Disneyland. Come join me on my journey and help me navigate this world. :)

4 thoughts on “Marathon Monday – Resilience and Running

  1. Everything 16 miles and over feels like much more of a challenge. I find that’s when my feet wonder what’s happening – at 14 miles they’re like ‘why are we still moving? Shouldn’t we have stopped by now? What are you doing you lunatic?!’!

    Liked by 1 person

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