A New Perspective.
I am supposed to do a ½ marathon this weekend.
(That is ABSURD).
So, some of you know, I haven’t really been able to run much since October. I have gotten some weeks of running in, some long runs that I have muddled through of 12-14 miles, where I think, ok, I can maybe get through this???
I had a cortisone injection into my hip joint 2 weeks ago, then the 4 days off while letting it “absorb”? or heal… hopefully?!
Literally, I am terrified. HOW DO I DO THIS? How do I do a “race” that I am not “ready” for, trained for completely prepped! As all good Type “A”er personality types, I previously have made DARN WELL SURE to be prepped for any race that I’ve entered (why enter, unless it has been a meaningful and intentional goal to prepare well for).
So, I Need to mentally prepare, because, this is going to be different. I literally may take over 30 minutes longer than I’ve ever taken to do a half marathon. I don’t even mentally know how to do that.
First: Where do I even GO at the start line if I’m not trying to go FAST!!!? Ha! I won’t really write the answer here because I do not know. I will try to be smart and put myself in a place that is consistent with being calm and beginning the race in a way that is “sensible.” Which honestly just makes me laugh. SENSIBLE. Like sensible shoes? When I do races, I do not want to be in the category of sensible! I toe the freaking LINE and will darn well find out if I can hang on! (maybe this is why I have no hamstring tendons intact?!) But for this race, I will sit back and pretend I am appropriately calm and collected to enjoy the experience. I’m going to practice acting like I am fine with arriving as I am, nothing more, nothing less. (yes, a bit of yoga talk here. I love those words). I will be near the sounds of the ocean and I will smile in gratitude that I am literally even ARRIVING! I will rise to simply what IS.
The first 3 miles I will just begin and again, remain calm and check in with awareness of my body. (are my legs working?) (I am not kidding, these are the questions I will have to ask). I’m going to not mentally backtrack to last year where I rain so strong in the marathon and qualified for Boston. I will remain true to what is right today. Not 2-5-8 years ago.
Next 5 miles- l’ll focus on keep up this patient work and maybe getting into a groove and running a bit smoother and stronger, mostly more efficient as the time goes on, without causing damage. Maybe this race is “damage mitigation blended in with being in the joy of race environment”? Never have I done a race in this state, so the goal really is to FINISH without causing harm, and through these miles it is going to be imperative to be very humble and lose any ego. I’ve done some runs lately that honestly by 8 miles I’m toasted. My energy levels are troubling; I’m taking B12 now in addition to Vit D. I just don’t know if there is an energy problem? Dehydration? Or am I just simply unfit still from not running for so long? Either way, These miles I need to go so easy because I’m at a place that I’m not even sure if I can FINISH this run, so I need to change perspective and LEARN FROM THIS SITUATION I find myself in- how to be conservative (in a run sense!).
Mile 8-10. Since I’m definitely not my fittest, I am going to be asking myself to just still stay as strong and in the game as I am able, taking it with awareness. If I do not run with intentionality and awareness, I am dooming myself to form that is not conducive to being gentle on the hips. There can just simply never be a moment of ego arriving during this race. I am not defined by this day. Keep moving forward. This is a great opportunity for growth- we are only growing when challenged, and I know I’m going to be challenged both emotionally and physically in this race. I want to own the experience, not wallow in frustration that I cannot run as I typically would, but own the experience of doing a race in a condition that is really not optimal.
Mile 10-13. Check in and if there is anything left, and since this event is all about trying to make some sort of way to the finish line, I am sure that I will be needing to channel my ability to be comfortable while being quite uncomfortable. Just trying to finish is such a different way of racing for me (or not racing). But here I am, and I cannot overthink it and get lost in my head. Instead, open to the outside and ENJOY the air, the atmosphere, the community and connection around you. See what it is like to be in a different group of people in the race than I typically would. These final miles are going to come down to finding an ability to be full of JOY for something that I love. And, if I am struggling to finish, maybe all the better- since that is one of the big things that I miss about being in better fitness. I’m simply LUCKY to be able to be out on the roads, on my feet, in my body, and trying my best. I’ll take it.
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