I read a lot of running blogs. Most of these are written by people much faster and seemingly much more put together than I feel in my marathon training. It’s hard for me to imagine that they ever have a run that goes a horribly as my last long run went on Sunday; however, when I look back through their archives, I’m reminded that even if their idea of a bad run is at a pace I couldn’t imagine in a million years, the feelings appear to be the same.
This past week was a step back week for me and my running plan had me at 11 miles. I stepped outside my door and knew I was going to be in trouble when I looked at my watch and saw that despite that my tired, achy legs felt like I was probably around 6 miles, my trusty Gamin showed a dismal 2. My feeling of discouragement was immediate. How can a distance that just a few weeks ago felt incredible suddenly feel so insurmountable? I tried all sorts of fuel. I stopped at a grocery store and bought some cold water. I ran through a fountain to try to cool off, but nothing could convince my legs to turn over any faster. Finally, having run just under 8 miles, I was out of time and had cash it in and head to the theatre.
I felt angry, disappointed, and discouraged. How would I ever make it to 16 miles on Saturday? Much less 26.2?? My emotional run had taken over my entire day. I was miserable at work, miserable on my commute, and miserable until I feel asleep on the couch at 7:30pm.
Thankfully, the greatest thing about this marathon training is that sometimes when I feel like I’m falling apart, my wonderful friends and #supportcrew take it upon themselves to pick me up, dust me off, and put me upright on my Brooks Adrenalines again. They remind me that this marathon will not take place at a temperature of 85 with 95% humidity. And that even seasoned runners have difficulty running in those conditions. And that the fact that I kept moving, despite how slow I was going, or how many times I stopped to walk or stretch, makes me a stronger runner than I could possibly believe I was at that moment.
So thank you to every person who sends me words of encouragement, who texts me in the middle of a run, who like my mid-run photos, who have supported my Team for Kids fundraising efforts, who ask me “how’s marathon training going,” who let me stomp around backstage, and who believe in me when I have a hard time believing in myself. We’re reaching the peak of training soon, and I’m only going to get more emotional from here. Two months to go. Get ready.