When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us. Alexander Graham Bell
I’ll be honest. When I first decided I was going to try to run, I could barely make it two miles without walking, and it wasn’t until I could run a 5K without pausing, I felt like a runner.
|Look a real 5K runner!|
RUNNERS don’t walk, right.
So when I really stated to work on four miles, then five, etc… I refused to stop unless I was having a near death experience because I felt like a failure if I stopped. Then, after I ran a few races, I noticed people actually walked through water stops, some just randomly walked a few seconds, and I began to realize I may just be a tick too crazy about this walking thing.
True story... It always bothered me during my first half marathon, I had to stop and use the port of potty. It was lack of experience and I drank too much before the race, but I didn’t know any better, I was worried about keeling over in the heat. I lost about 90 seconds stopping at the P-O-P and it made me crazy I had lost time due to a break. Finally a year later, I ran a half without a pause and I felt vindicated.
These days, my mindset is so different, I laugh when I look back.
The first summer I ran, I was crazy. I would want to run seven miles, so I would make myself run to halfway point. I would stop my Garmin (LOL) and walk about 5 minutes, steal some drinks from sprinklers, then start a new run. I would rarely even say I “ran” seven miles because I didn’t do it all at once.
Dreaming about 26.2 started a short time after I ran my first half, but I didn’t believe I was capable. After I started reading a lot of blogs, and read about people’s brutal first marathon experience, I got really scared and decided I needed to run a few years before I could even think about trying. I wish I wouldn’t have done that! My heart finally decided I could do it, but my health took a dip. *Seize the moment* tough lesson learned.
To be honest, I don’t like to even think about long distances right now. I really want to let them go…but before I close that chapter completely, I have a few things I want to accomplish.
A marathon is the top of the list. My ideas about what a marathon may look like for me now have dramatically changed; intervals are always part of the mix, but even with lots of walking, that many hours may not be reasonable for me… I am still playing around, trying to see if there is way to do some longer runs without causing more injury.
What I really want is to check off my list, and then say I am not racing anymore on my own terms, not be taken out due to injury, health, etc.
I want my memories when I fade away into the sunset.
The truth is I have been very content doing one 5 and 6 miler, and some kind of interval adventure, and calling it a week. My pain is manageable, I don’t see new damage, and that is what I want, to preserve what I have.
Will I miss half marathons? Yes!! I already do. It is becoming apparent to me that the American FamilyFitness Half was my last time to line up and run a race with barely a pause. I will be forever grateful that I had those moments, the perfect weather, and the perfect nerve to push myself that day. I replay it in my mind often… seriously, just the best day. I am not saying I will never run another half in my life, but just running them for fun is a lot different.
|best running day ever!|
Will I still be a runner? Well sure, maybe not a runner with big goals anymore, but I will still feel like I have a part in the community.
Trust me there is a small part of me that says…at my age, preserve, what for? Maybe I should just go all out, but I don’t enjoy pain either.
You know I always enjoying hearing your thoughts!
Do you ever think the day your running may change?
Thoughts about goals, motivation, the need to have a reason to train and run, when to call it quits, personal contentment.