Saturday morning I set out on my last long run of training before my first half marathon. It was a cold windy day. I didn't do any treadmill work this week and the combination with the weather working against me made my run rough. It was hard run, an extreme metal test. It made me question why I ever wanted to embark on this journey to marathon running. Clearly, my love of physical activity is no longer about weight loss, it's about pushing my physical limits and molding the very best possible version of me. All kinds of thoughts ran through my head on the 12 mile run. I struggled from mile 7 to mile 12. My legs were heavy, I was forming a blister under my right foot, and my hips and knees hurt. I wanted to quit at ten. I wanted to quit at eleven. It felt like the run would never end. I had to force my brain into what I call Zombie mode. No thinking. Just one foot in front of the other. Just keep moving, do not stop. One step at a time. This run took all of my self coaching. You do not quit. Finish what you started. You CAN do this. You WILL do this.
My run group had run 10 miles, with only my run buddy Kat and I doing 12. We planned a destination run, meeting at the gym and running to a little breakfast place where we'd left a few cars. I rounded the corner and they were all done having completed their 10 miles. I still had a half mile left to run. I started to cry knowing they were finished and I had to keep moving, but I did not stop. I kept running for another half mile making the block one more time. It was miserable. I can't sugar coat it, but finishing that 12 miles, when I was trying to convince myself to quit, felt euphoric. It wasn't my slowest run, it wasn't my fastest run, but it was my longest. There was a big jump for me between miles 11 and 12. My 11 mile run last week felt like flying. This wasn't my week for running, and that's ok. I'd rather have a tough run this week, than a tough run next week on race day.
Three months I've been training for this lil half marathon run next week. When 20,000 other people who think running 13.1-26.2 miles sounds like fun, will meet at the start line at 7am Sunday morning. I've been dreaming of the finish line at the race. What will it look like? How will crossing it feel? Who will be waiting there? What will my time be? Are they gonna give me my medal right away? I really want that medal. I'll be wearing it all day after the race. I want that medal.
I'm looking forward to the running expo, to spending time with friends and family, and celebrating the half marathon accomplishment with my Sole Sistas! I can not wait to share this experience with all of you. I read that a half marathon should be on everyone's bucket list. I'm amped to cross I off mine!
I'm planning on running the full marathon next. I have to do it. I have to prove to myself that I can. My husband says I've been bit by the running bug.Whatever it is, I'm so glad the bug picked me. I really feel like running picked me. One week. Let's get it!