26.2 miles seemed like a great idea: a challenge, a commitment, and a way to push myself. I found a race months away, I started the first miles. I was well on my way.
Then we moved, I started a new job, the kids started school, and life started rushing by. Short runs got pushed, long runs shortened, and my meal plans flew out the window on the way for take-out. All of those months I had left for preparation shortened to weeks and I was faced with the fact that my training was nothing close to the original plan, I hadn’t broken 15 miles yet, and I wasn’t ready. Instead of my first marathon approaching with excitement, it started to feel more like marching to certain defeat. (It really seemed like failure – I failed a test once and it still bothers me to this day). After a week or two of back and forth, some crying, and a lot of beating myself up; hubby reminded me this was about my journey as a runner, and there will be other races.
I had two choices. 1. Refuse to admit I wasn’t ready, go, walk most of the last half, and almost certainly have an awful run. 2. Admit that it is okay, choose another race and press on.
Today I will go out to the same old trail and get in this weeks training run. I’ll enjoy the cooler weather, quietness, and everything I look forward to on a run. I will take one step at a time, and no one will know or care I am missing THE race tomorrow. This week, I made all of my workouts, still ate too many cookies, and spent too much time on my feet in uncomfortable shoes. It has been one of those really long weeks, and I cannot fathom getting in the car today to drive five hours to a race I wasn’t confident about.
I know I made the right choice. I did figure out I love running enough to keep going, and I will make 26.2. Nothing ever happens on our time-table any way.