I have recently been tantalized by a very daunting fitness goal – to run a marathon. To be honest, I don’t know if I have the mental or physical ability to actually do it, but does anyone? The body is not made to just run 26 miles…it’s incredibly grueling and demanding. I have finished a half marathon in a mostly acceptable time – my judgment, not anyone else’s- but I never put my heart fully into training. I have always liked running and athletics but it’s always something I feel like I have had to work harder at than everyone else. So does that give me more or less motivation? I don’t know yet. The race is the Portland Marathon, October 6th, 2013. I have the time. I have the opportunity. I have the gear. As of now, I’m think doing it. What do I really have to lose? (well, besides a few toenails).
I’m running my second half-marathon in 88 days. here are some recent insights about my relationship with running:
- I like running but I don’t love it yet. I run alone and it’s difficult to push myself for those extra miles and extra speed. I can run 4 miles without stopping but 13 still feels very daunting, especially at my goal pace.
- I need to run with music. I tried running without an ipod twice and it was almost disastrous. also, I run faster and for longer when I run to music that has a heavy dubstep beat. I don’t like skrillex but I’ll take a 7 minute mile over a 10 minute one! (my electro-loving friend joked that I am running from the music!)
- how I eat affects my training (duh?). I need to be more aware of the fats/salts I intake and really strive for total health.
- I much prefer running in the evening. I tried running before 9 am. I’m tired, the temperatures continue to increase (it’s been 100+ all week in Denver!), and I just don’t perform as well.
- I need to include more than just running into my training. I can’t currently afford a gym membership but I do own a bike and of course can do stretches/yoga/ab workouts at home or at the park.
- running is not as inexpensive as people think. yes, it’s free to run outside. however, without proper shoes, gear, and a reliable app or watch, it’s difficult to perform at your maximum potential. I need new shoes and I’d really love a Garmin 110 with a heart rate monitor but combined, these will put me back about $250! plus, race registration fees are steep. I’m paying someone $80 so I can go run 13.1 miles for fun? hmm.
13.1 is looming and I will be more than ready this time.
Yesterday I had a long talk with a person I consider to be quite influential in my life and we discussed the notion of me staying grounded and present in my current (post-graduation) life even if it’s not at all what I imagined it to be. On my original blog (which essentially is this one, it just has a different name/theme now), I had a page entitled “staying grounded” which contained quotes I found to be inspirational and pictures from my many travels. I have set some “fun” summer goals for myself that I am surprisingly excited for and I think will make a significant impact on my life.
- get a tan. the pool in my apartment opens in the next few weeks and I absolutely love laying by the pool with music on and just relaxing. and yes, I wear sunscreen!
- redecorate my apartment. I’ve lived in my vintage studio for two years and haven’t really made it my own. I’ve had posters and pictures collecting dust and I just need to commit and finally hang them on my walls! I’ve been living with the notion that I will be leaving soon and it’s been nearly a year since I graduated and I am still here. might as well make my apartment chic and adorable!
- demolish my half marathon time. last spring I ran the Colfax Half Marathon in (an embarrassingly slow) 2:47:13. I ran an unofficial 2:35:15 last summer and my ultimate goal is sub-2:00! (but anything sub 2:20 would be nice). Right now I’ve been hitting about 10-15 miles a week at a much faster pace, bought some neon running gear that I love, and I’m enjoying running again.
So, will accomplishing these three goals drastically improve my life? Not likely, but I’m hoping I can do that on my own along the way.