My third marathon is just days away and although I'm experiencing typical taper madness, at this point I'm also anxiously excited. Because I love to train and run all the miles, I have a hard time believing how many miles I've ran and that I'm trained for this goal race. I have to keep looking back at my training log to ensure that yes, I did run 927 miles these last 18 weeks! All I have left is to run the William A. Irvin 5k Friday night as easy and slow as possible to shake out the nerves, then bring on the 26.2 miles!
People often ask if I've always been a runner. I love telling them that I've only been running a little over three years and am training for my third marathon! Growing up I was into cheerleading and dance, but otherwise hated anything athletic. I wasn't supposed to be the athlete in my family, but the bookworm, the straight A student. My brother got the title of athlete. I was okay with that. I thought running was the most awful thing.
Then, when the most awful thing did happen, I eventually needed something to help me deal with my grief; I need an outlet for my heartbreak. Thanks to an amazing friend who encouraged my first run, I found not only my outlet, but also my passion, in running.
I'm not a naturally talented runner. Speed is definitely hard for me. Long, slow distance is my perfect comfort zone! But I've set my goals to try to be faster each year and each marathon to eventually qualify for and run the Boston Marathon. Little by little I'm making my way there! I'm a perfectionist and it's difficult for me to not just reach that goal RIGHT NOW, but I'm trying to understand that it's going to take me time. There are other more talented, gifted runners who have been able to reach that coveted BQ by now and some days that hurts because I feel as if I'm putting in all the work as well. I'm happy for them, but get down on myself for not being as awesomely fast. I think this holds me back from running more races as well. I feel as if I'm not going to be faster, what's the point of doing a race? How do I not get disappointed with the result? How do I tell everyone that I didn't PR? I do envy those who run all the races so happily! Maybe I need to find a running buddy to run with me and yell at me to "calm down"!
For now, I am aiming for a PR at Grandma's Marathon on Saturday, but not a BQ. That will come in time, but I knew trying to train at that level (to finish around 3:35) would be too much of a jump this time around; however, my A, B and C goals are all PR goals! My D goal is just to cross the finish line happy and injury free if all else fails! After Grandma's, I would love to do some more races and continue with training to run a fall marathon. First, let's see how Saturday goes! Good luck to everyone running races this weekend!
Until next time~