The Nature of Reality

running

It has been nine days since the Disney half marathon. Like clockwork, 8-10 days after every race I’ve run, I end up revisiting all that I have planned when it comes to races and training schedules and goals for what’s coming up. This time around is no different.

The reason I like to do this is that it forces me to be completely honest with myself (and any potential running partners) about where I am and where I’d like to be. Sometimes I’m overzealous, which can then backfire, so I’m trying to be as straightforward as possible. It just so happens that this time around is a bit painful to admit.

You see, this winter has not been kind to me (or anyone, really), and my running and training have both suffered from it. This is absolutely my own fault, I am aware, and that hurts. However, at this point there’s no reason to keep beating myself up about it (and I’ll make sure to come back and read that line the next time I’m feeling down).

This is the time when I have to be realistic. I had a goal of a sub-2 hour half marathon on April 6. My training is not where it should be to run that. It just isn’t. It sucks, but it’s ok. Grand plans in October end up distant dreams by March. It happens, and has happened before more than once. Pretty sure Ange and I swore off winter races during the Disney races (and then promptly agreed to another the day we both got home….because of course we did).

I feel like I can attribute a lot of my nonchalance about knocking this goal down to the Disney weekend. I had a lot of stress going into that one, and a lot of concern about having a horrible race and disappointing my running partner (despite countless reassurances that it would be fine). And then? It really was fine! Even though we stopped multiple times for pictures and walked a bunch and crossed the finish line at least an hour slower than either of us had ever done so before.

It was all ok.

Not running a sub-2 in four and a half weeks will be ok. Making sure I enjoy this race as well as stay healthy enough to keep running and be set for Ragnar is ok. Getting back into a habit (come on, warmer weather and Daylight Saving Time!) and enjoying the process is ok.

Completely scrapping my training plan and building a new one is ok. Actually, it’s better than ok. I’ll admit it. I love building training plans (calendars are where my Type A-ness is most readily apparent). Following them may be something I have struggled with for the last year, but man, building them certainly makes me happy.

It really will all be ok.

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Happy

Oh my goodness. You know how sometimes after coming home from a long weekend you can end up with a vacation hangover? That feeling where you’d so much rather be where you left, like you can’t even stay awake because you played so hard?

This trip left me with a happy hangover.

Seriously. Best. Weekend. Ever.

I could give you a whole run-down recap of the thing, but I know Ange is currently writing a race recap that will span TWO POSTS. I’ll just reblog those. 🙂

Real quickly, though, the 10k was MUGGY. Oh man. My gills had dried up from last summer (thanks a lot, winter), so I could barely breathe. Five of us stopped right at the mile 6 mark so that we could wait for our friend Lo, who was running her very first 10k. The look on her face when she rounded that corner nearly made me cry! So we finished the race running in a pack around her (pretty sure she crossed the finish line before us), and what made it better was the number of people around us who started cheering for her too. Have you ever finished a race with tears in your eyes? I have. It was incredible.

The half marathon was the slowest half marathon I’ve ever run (by an HOUR…and that’s counting the first half of the full last year). It was also the most fun half marathon I’ve ever run. SO. MANY. PICTURES. Not even kidding, we waited in line for over 15 minutes for the picture with Mickey and Minnie.

mickey

And? It was worth every single second.

I know that I didn’t ever put up a mile 19 dedication, but I’m ok with that. The last mile was a combination of exhaustion and sweat and a bit of pain and a whole lot of happiness.

But for simplicity’s sake, I’ll dedicate it to Pop Chips, which I knew were waiting for me at the finish line.

The rest of the time spent with five absolutely INCREDIBLE women before, during, and after these races made the whole weekend that much more special. I just….whew! I don’t really have words for how amazing they made this weekend.

There are already plans in the works for future races and trips, and I couldn’t be happier about that.

And of course, then there’s this.

http://24hoursofhappy.com/

Stay happy, my friends.

Mile Fourteen Dedication: Stephanie

With many of my dedications, I started just making a list of who I wanted to mention and plugged them into a post. This one, though, is rather particular.

You see, Steph was the first and is to date the only person who has ever run fourteen miles with me.

Quite honestly, I would not be where I am, would not have been where I’ve been, nor would I be the runner I am today had it not been for Steph. She was part of the group that got me across my first half marathon finish line, and beyond that was the one who said at the same time I did, “Hey, we could do a full.”

She’s also the one who learned with me just how much of a horrible idea running a full marathon on zero training is. Seriously awful, bad, no good idea. Don’t do it.

Our running lives have taken us in some vastly different directions (hers through another marathon, mine through a Tough Mudder), but there’s always been that common theme of being a runner.

After Tough Mudder when it was time for me to refocus on running in just running races, she welcomed me back into the fold. And in just a couple months (or, you know, seven-ish weeks from now) we’ll be back on the same course, shooting for a repeat yet improved performance during the GO! St Louis half marathon, our very first race we ever ran together.

I’m sure I won’t be the only one there who will be excited for the mile nine beers.

Steph, mile fourteen is for you. See you soon.

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

Well, it’s official.

princess

In just eight short months I’ll be heading back to Orlando to run through some Disney parks. This time there will be quite a few more people and definitely fewer miles.

Kind of.

I’ll be short by 7 miles or so. Basically the same amount I walked in January. Works for me.

10k Saturday, half marathon Sunday, and the whole weekend with some absolutely incredible ladies!

I can’t wait!!!

 

Check out some of those awesome ladies!!! Lo, Kelly, and Angela.