Thanks to my friend Austin asking me to run his very first half marathon with him, I signed up for a half marathon last night. Had I not been asked, I most likely would not have decided to do this on my own.
This year has been tough for me and running; we just aren't getting along very well. I think training for and running three half marathons last year took a toll on me, mentally and physically. Last fall, right before my last half marathon, I sprained an ankle and had already been running through hip flexor issues for months. The ankle got better, but the hip issues continued. My running definitely decreased after Nike Women's marathon, and once the New Year came around, I wasn't even interested for the most part. I signed up for the Santa Cruz half marathon that was on April 7, but sold my bib as I really didn't even want to run it, and stopped training mid way through my plan. Now I have to run, as I am just about 12 weeks from this next half marathon, and I have someone counting on me to run with them.
I ran on Wednesday to show support and solidarity for the runners affected by the Boston Marathon bombings, and it didn't suck.
Visualizing the people who lost their lives, or were injured while running what could have been their dream race made my own discomfort and lack of desire seem small in comparison. Perspective will do that to you. I think the Boston bombing is another factor in why I thought it would be good to sign up for another half marathon. No evil act will stop us runners from racing; you can't take away our desire to run and race with fear and uncertainty. I love, now more than ever, the community that running provides. So I will be running this half marathon in July for the casualties of the Boston Marathon bombing, holding them in my heart as I train for, and then run my fourth half marathon.
It won't be easy. I am sure I will have runs that suck more often than runs that I love. I will hurt, and probably a lot. I will deal with my nagging hip issues, and most likely new injuries to add to my list. I have a training plan that incorporates yoga once a week, and cross training and strength training a few times a week. I hope that supplementing my running with that will help to strengthen and stabilize my muscles, making me a better, faster, and less injury prone runner. Wish me luck, I am going to need it to keep my head focused on the end goal, and not get bogged down by all the little things in the middle.
Do you run? Do you have races coming up? How do you stay focused, keep your training tight, and avoid injuries?
If you don't run, would you ever consider training for a 5k race, just to see if you can do it?