My running journey to the Marathon – Month 10 Update

One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from these past few months of consistent running is that plans change and it’s OK!. 10 months ago it was my dream to run a marathon. I had it all set up, the date, the time, the race, the hotels, everything was planned. Then the virus hit and everything up till the Fall was canceled, my half marathon in May included. So what did I do? I ran the 13.1 miles on the roads where I live, click here for the post, and it was great! Tough because I live on a mountain so the course I had planned was very hilly which proved challenging but once I crossed that finish line the feeling was superb. As I said above if you want to read all about my half then check out this post here.

Now, I do want to say that it’s still my dream to run one someday. But, as you will read below, for right now I need to keep my efforts smaller then slowly build up to my BIG plans! ๐Ÿ™‚ And you know what, this is fine, better even.

Fast forward to June. After I completed my half marathon I fell into a rut. I didn’t want to run as far, my mental strength was shot and most runs would end in tears because of my awful shin splints and ankle tendonitis. But I refused to stop running due in part to fear of disappointing others if I didn’t complete my marathon and also due in part to my stupidity. So I just shortened my runs to 1-4 miles but upped my days on the road to 7 days a week (normally I ran only 4-5). While in theory this seemed like a solid idea to me in the moment it only further led to my burn out. So, can you guess what happened next? June 15th was my last day running for over 2 1/2 months. Now, my non-existent running in July was in part due to me getting my 4 wisdom teeth removed so I had to take a few weeks off to recover from that but by the last week in July I was cleared to resume strenuous activity, but I didn’t.

My time off from running was a good thing. It allowed my body to heal and I knew that I didn’t want to get back on the road again until I wanted to. I didn’t feel the urge to run again until about the last few days in August.

Getting back onto the road again was so so wonderful. I ran 3 miles and it took all 3 of those miles to find my pace and steady my breathing but for the first time in over 7 months I ran without pain! What a nice feeling it was. My pain first developed in February following my leg muscle pull when I began over training. I was so focused on running long distances every run that it started to add up and I eventually hurt myself.

Where am I today? Today I am GREAT! Sure I am sad my marathon in October was canceled but it proved to be a good thing. Instead of focusing on running 26.2 miles I am going to shift that down a bit and make my new goal 13.1. This will give me time to perfect the shorter distance so I can slowly build up to it and give my body time to adjust then one day, a few years from now I can tackle the 26.2 miles HEALTHY! ๐Ÿ™‚ Currently I am running 3-4 days a week and these runs are around 3-4 miles. I am starting out slow and building up slow as well. It’s not about the right now game but instead the long game. ๐Ÿ™‚

That’s it. To leave you with one last thought here is one of my favorite quotes by Haruki Murakami:

“The point is whether or not I improved over yesterday. In long distance running the only opponent you have to beat is yourself, the way you used to be.”

Haruki Murakami

Have a great day everyone! And enjoy the labor day weekend.

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