Welcome to my fresh, new Saturday feature, Writers Who Run! If you're a writer, and you don't run, stick around anyway for my personal (and embarrassing) confession about my problem with procrastination.
Every year for the last few years, I have signed up to run in a BIG 10k race, the biggest in the southeast. The Cooper River Bridge Run has 40,000+ runner/walkers each year. It's always the last weekend in March or the first weekend in April. I try to plan two races a year, my spring 10k, and a fall half-marathon. For those of you who don't run, a 10k is 6.2 miles and a half-marathon is 13.1 miles. But that's not important here. What is important is the reason WHY I challenge myself to run these races. It's to give me more of a reason to run more regularly. I love how I feel when I run. I love the cadence of my feet hitting the ground. I love the solitude of nature and the wind blowing in my face (unless it's like today and it's 35 degrees out). I love the challenge of going further, or faster, or stronger each time. What I don't love is being inconsistent. Because that means I run a lot LESS. So why do I bring this up? Because that 10k is looming right in my horizons. And I have run less than 10 times since Thanksgiving. I'm a procrastinator. I'm not proud of it. Good intentions alone won't get me to the finish line. And they certainly won't beat last year's time either.
So what's the writing analogy? I failed to meet a writing deadline through procrastination because I thought I would have more time. Wrong! I lost out on an amazing chance to submit my work for an incredible writing opportunity. Just like I plan to run 2 races each year, I plan to attend an SCBWI conference once a year. It gives me encouragement, camaraderie, and new knowledge and strength. But I had better not procrastinate on registration, like I did for this missed opportunity. Regret is not a good feeling. But running is. And so is writing. Good thing registration doesn't open up for another few months.
If I can find a way to balance my writing life, my running life, and my personal life, then maybe I won't procrastinate so much. I know you don't like losing out on writing opportunities. And I know you don't like skipping that long run you've worked so hard for. That's why I started a Facebook group, WritersWhoRun, so we can share our love of both passions, and help each other get through hard times, give tips for writing, as well as running. Next Saturday, I'll let you know how today's run went, and what I learned about writing in the process.
What do you do to prevent procrastination? What do you do to balance your writing life with everything else? How much did you run this month? How much did you write? How much were you on Facebook?
Keep on keepin' on...