Today was my last workout until the half marathon on Sunday. The training program called for a 30-minute “run” at the 4 minutes running/2 minutes walking pace. But, at the urging (or perhaps shaming) of my trainer, I decided to run the entire 30 minutes.
In the early days of January 2006, when I opened up my “Runner's World Complete Book of Beginning Running” and began my 8-week program designed to train me to run 30 minutes straight, I struggled a lot. My 30-minute run this morning, was—dare I say it—easy.
Sure it was on a treadmill and I stuck with an 11:45/mile pace, but it occurred to me as I was listening to my iPod trying to visualize myself run/walking the half marathon, that I’ve come a long way. I was literally ecstatic when I finished my run this morning.
Group training, while it has provided me with support, camaraderie and guidance, also was my first adult venture into a world of athletics where I am at the bottom of the heap. It so easy to forget how far I am from my first “run” (a 1 minute run/2 minute walk for 30 minutes) when I focus on and measure myself by the talent and success of those who have been running for years.
My victories, though small, are significant. I’ve put more physical strain on my body in the last few months than I have since I was a teenager, and my body has held up surprisingly well. I joked with a friend a few weeks ago that it’s always a fun to find out how my body will fail me during each long run, but the truth is, with the exception of some blisters and a blood soaked sock after the 12 mile run, my body hasn’t failed me at all. There are some aches and pains, but I’ve been lucky enough not to have had any severe or even minor injuries.
Life is good my friends. I’ve lost 10 pounds (which was my goal before the half marathon); I feel strong, healthy, and positive; the weather is supposed decent on Sunday… I’m as ready as I’ll ever be. My goal is to finish, which means, if I have to crawl the last three miles to the finish line, then I’ll do it. I’m not walking off the course.
So wish me luck… this will probably be my last post before the half marathon.