For the last 17 weeks I’ve been training my mind and body to run 26.2 miles. For the first 9 weeks I never missed a run. During the weeks that followed I struggled with injuries that inconvenienced my plans but didn’t end them. I’ve nursed shin splints, foot issues and an irritated IT band. I’ve read articles, talked with running pros and listened to my athletic trainer’s advise (i.e my husband!).
I’ve spent that last few months running long runs with a high school friend turned running BFF. He’s never done much running prior to this and when I said that I was beginning to train for a marathon he wanted in. To go from a non-runner to training for 26.2 is no easy task but every weekend and with every new mile, he continues to impress me. He shows that running isn’t all about the physical ability and prior experience but about mental toughness. He continues to hit the goals we set and on November 8th I look forward to crossing the finish line with him.
My uncle is running this marathon with me. This is my first, but not his. He is a running inspiration and I’m so happy he decided to run with me as I accomplish the biggest goal I’ve ever set for myself. I get weekly texts of encouragement and advice. I look forward to those texts and to running this marathon with him by my side.
Through out this process I’ve learned many things about myself. I’ve learned that even on the days I don’t want to, I can wake up at 3:30am to prep for 5:30am runs. I’ve learned that my mental abilities are greater than I ever thought. I’ve learned my body will do what I want it to, but I have to respect it and understand that sometimes it needs a break. I’ve learned that I can do whatever I want to do with enough determination.
This training process hasn’t been easy. The hours of training after work and on Saturday mornings have been dreadful at times, but I’m sure that it will all be worth it on November 8th. You really get to know who you are on a run. It tests your courage and mental stability. You find out how strong you are and how important it is to believe in your abilities. Running makes you better and you will never regret starting. It’s something that is hard to explain unless you’ve felt the high and accepted the pain that comes with the process. You can do it and once you start you’ll find a much better you underneath the past excuses and weakness. People always say “I could never run that many miles” but they could if they wanted to. People can run if they fix their minds to tell their bodies they can. Running made me better and I will be grateful for that all the way to the finish line.
Here are a few pictures from my journey to 26.2.