Do you ever feel like your way of thinking could be holding you back? I don’t mean optimism/pessimism; I mean your ideas and beliefs about who you are or what you do. I do. I feel as if I’ve been thinking about myself as someone who works out because it’s what we do. Not because I’m an athlete. Not because I have goals I want to hit. But because I’m a woman and we need to work out.

Well, I’m sick of this mindset. I want to change.

I want to stop thinking about things as a workout, a way to “lose weight” or “get in shape.” I mean what does the generic “get in shape” even mean? I want to focus on training for races. My end goal is not just fitness. My end goal is to finish a marathon.

And maybe get faster while I’m at it.

I need to start thinking of myself as an athlete. It’s difficult because I haven’t thought that for a long time. I grew up playing sports and dancing, but I haven’t thought of myself as athletic for about 20 years.

I do need to lose some weight, but it’s not the main focus. It’ll be the by-product of becoming a more well-rounded athlete. I need to think about food is fuel. It helps me lift heavier and run farther. Food is not my emotional support system.

Hopefully eating better and training will help with my energy level, but I need to start pushing through my low energy days. Even if I’m tired, I should do something because something is better than nothing.

I need to utilize my running coach and stick to our plan.

Weights and plyo are on the schedule because they aid in my training. They help me get faster. They help to round out my training. I’ve gotten back on track with running, stretching, and yoga. Now to get busy with everything else that’s important.

I plan to keep expanding my knowledge of running and training. I’m reading books on anatomy of running and different ideas to getting better such as ChiRunning. I’m combining what I learn to help improve myself.

What mindset do you need to change? How can you start seeing yourself differently?


Jenna Volden has a degree in business and has spent the last 10 plus years working for others. She believes it is time to start her own photography and writing business. She enjoys running, coffee and helping others achieve their goals. Gluten-free foods are a lifestyle, not a choice, for her due to celiac disease. She is currently based in Phoenix, Arizona.