I’m training for my first marathon: really I am!
It’s been a while now since I decided to run my first full marathon and announced my intention to do so. I was bursting with enthusiasm right after running my tenth half marathon in early June. But before I could get going with my new training plan I pulled the incredibly stupid stunt of accidentally dropping a concrete block on my right foot. Fortunately there doesn’t seem to be any permanent damage, but I did have to seriously curtail the mileage for a few weeks.
I wear a lot of shirts with running-related slogans, as many runners do. I have a couple of shirts with references to “13.1” or “half.” Right after I decided I really want to do this full marathon thing, I bought myself a shirt that says “26.2 miles — ’cause I’m full of crazy.” But I told myself I couldn’t wear it… not yet.
I figured I couldn’t REALLY say I was training for a full marathon until I’d run more than 13.1 miles for the first time. I had to run 14 miles to earn the right to wear my new shirt.
By mid-July I was ready (or so I thought) to break through that huge psychological barrier. But various things kept happening that would cause me to shorten my weekly “long slow distance” run by a mile or two, or three. The day would be too warm, so I’d decide to turn back toward the car earlier than planned. Or I’d wake up with a headache and decide to go back to sleep for another hour or two, which would leave me short on time to run that many miles before I had to be somewhere else later in the day.
Finally two days ago I vowed that I would go out and run those 14 miles. I wouldn’t care or count how many times I walked or stopped. I was going to cover the distance!
It was a warm day. I planned an out-and-back route that would take me three times through a local park with tall trees, a river, and a drinking fountain with cold water. I took my time. And I did it.
When I hit the “stop” button on my watch I’d traveled 14.12 miles and I could call myself a marathoner in training.
I wore the shirt that same afternoon!
Today brought another new test. In the past, after each of my half marathons, I’ve given myself a week or two to recover before going out to run again. Today, just two days after the longest run of my life, I laced up my shoes and went out to run. I didn’t go far and I didn’t go fast, but I ran. It was a total recovery run but it was a run!
Saturday I’ll do it again… a little harder. Ten miles or so sounds good.
The Victoria marathon is just over 11 weeks away… only 80 days. I have a lot of ground to cover between now and then. But I can do this!
One step at a time.