yeah, and still working on my head…..this was my morning talk to a Virtual Half Marathon Clinic…think I was talking as much to myself as I was to them….
Every clinic is different, but I find it’s finding out what, or the why people have signed on.
Learn to Runners seem to just want that permission to run….5K not sure if they’re learn to runners, but want to start somewhere..10Kers are looking towards that Half Marathon, but need that next step..or just want to crush a 10K time goal.
Half and Full Marathoners are more specific…..it usually comes down to, wanting to get to that distance, but as with every clinic there are so many different expectations….to finish, to finish smiling, to set and achieve a goal time (qualify for Boston?) and to learn stuff…….lots of stuff.
When I think of this clinic the half marathon specifically, I always ask myself, what would be my expectations?…yes, I’ve run only 10 fulls, have no idea how many halfs, and yes a couple of ironman triathlons, a bunch of half ironman distance races and whatever ………..every run, every race or event is different, going is different, getting there is unique, but I eventually found that, well, once on that start line…..the goal is the same…for me anyway…yeah, a goal time, but, to just get from that point A to point B….
Once that gun goes off though, I find I maybe a little different than some, but I just want to enjoy myself….I’ve been on that start line so stressed and maybe focused, that afterwards I won’t even remember who I talked to, who said hi to me…nothing…I’ve actually had friends come to me afterwards mention that to me….I want to say focused, but, yeah I’m thinking of every mile of that 26.2 miles; STRESSED and TERRIFIED!
And yes, when I do know that I haven’t trained nearly close enough to that training plan, I start working and thinking about those expectations….
Also, the experience of every event, adds knowledge to the next…….and the one thing that has really stuck with me, is to RELAX!……what’ll happen will happen…….there’s nothing to do now but to just run….
That happens the weeks before the events as well right?…you start forgetting the reason we taper, and try to find things to do that we think might make the race better, like running 13 miles the Sunday before the actual race, which we know is wrong, but still…..? And, can I run more hills!?
I recently heard this, stress is resisting that which life presents to you……Now, for me, I treat every run, every race, just as that….not so stressed that I’m about to collapse or jump out of my skin, just look around, be a chatty Cathy, be as social and as relaxed as possible….maybe stretch a bit, or a few squats, …oh yes, take part in the warm up….get to know those around you, look for and cheer friends on as you see them…..and be you.
Now, the weeks are going by………we start looking at ourselves, looking at those training schedules and maybe questioning ourselves, some self doubt, ‘why does that hurt?’ ‘is that supposed to feel like that?’……can I do 6 hill repeats instead of 7?……..can I sleep in today (NOPE!)
Yes, you have a training plan…..just do it, follow it, trust it. Don’t change anything…monitor yourself…is that an injury?.get it checked out NOW…yes, ask fellow runners and random strangers, go to your local running room and ask, but unless that person is a medical running professional…take all that advice knowing that at some point, even if it’s someone like a sports massage therapist, ask…..a great GP, physio, chiropractor will figure out the problem, and if it’s something that their profession can’t fix, they’ll send you to someone that can, or will give you an exercise, will tape what needs to be taped to get you to your goal…….that’s why I love my physios, they do what I do, they know how important that goal is, and they will do whatever’s needed to get me there……and if they say no, you know its no……your family GP may not understand that commitment….
More and more I’ve been inspired to add strength, and foam rolling to my daily routine…I love yoga, and wish I was better at it, much better…..as I get older, diet as well gets more and more important….they’re easy changes…easy things to add..cook, use real food….a few squats, calf raises, balancing on one foot, foam rolling while watching Game of Thrones one more time……..
And cross training…OMG!..why not? It’s xc ski season, being able to go downhill really really quick, double polling and know that not only did you get that endurance training done, but pretty much a full body workout….biking, hills on a bike, or just spinning a harder gear, the same benefit as running hill repeats..it goes from being aerobic to anaerobic…swimming and biking to strengthen that core (yes skiing and xc skiing does that as well…)
I think of this as a lifestyle thing…it’s not going make me looking that athlete with a six pack and shoulders as wide as a barn door no matter what I do…but, my mood always becomes better, even if the run sucked, I just feel overall better (endorphins, dopamine) I eat better, I sleep better..my cloresteral drops, my blood pressure as well….my overall heath better….
Setting yourself for success…surround yourself with people, people that get you and this…..I like anyone have my down bummed out days…that was me earlier this week…a dark dark place for some reason…went for a run Wednesday night, Thursday morning, I was like a new man……that social thing is huge….even if it’s just someone on the trails that says hi to you, or our you see someone else that you know also doing what you’re doing…a great mood shifter…..that helped a ton during COVID…
I’m just digging through a book by a lady named Jenny Tough…she’s one of those ultra highly motivated folks that does things I only dream of…in Solo she’s running through the mountains of Morocco, Bolivia, New Zealand, the Tien Shan of Kyrgyzstan and of course the Canadian Rockies…inspiring as hell…just seeing what she does makes me want to do and be better…can I, match her, no, but why not in that direction (who maybe camp in Banff this summer?)…..a couple of running friends passed away in 2015 in an earthquake in Napal that I just knew through running our run groups and being at our RRoom store…their sons put together this slideshow/video memorial of their lives…and unreal…they traveled, they did so many things, lived life, I actually saved a copy of that memorial and re-watch it every so often, for the memories, but everytime afterwards I think, what have I done with my life…..and yeah, I start striving, and aiming…and wanting to better.
As random as life can be…success?….I think is being happy with what you’ve done, so far, aiming at that goal…and remember that the journey is as important as that goal…..there’s a mountain climber named Ed Viesturs….I love how approaches every climb, like Everest……(if you’ve watched that IMAX video you know whom I’m talking about) he always says, ‘it’s not about getting to the top, it’s knowing when to come back down’….it’s also knowing what you need to do for that success….the step, what needs to be done……that’s this clinic, that’s that training program, that’s this clinic as part of it…but that’s also you….
only you know you…….get to know you, and as this journey progresses, let you take you to that goal.