13.1 Miles and Fours Lessons Learned
By Golda Smith
Some people get theirs in the shower but I get some of my “ah-ha” moments best ideas while I’m running. I started running again this year when I grew tired of working out indoors. It was time to mix it up. If you ever get bored with your work out, don’t stop, just find something new. That’s exactly what I did and I returned to something I loved doing.
Although I’ve trained and run a half marathon a few years back, when I started again in March, it was like starting all over again. Lesson one. Sometimes you have to go back to the starting line…almost as if you’ve never done it before. My body wasn’t used to doing what I was now asking it to do. There were days when I felt like my lungs were going to explode but I knew that feeling would pass as long as I didn’t give up.
Lesson two, don’t underestimate yourself. One day my coach, yes I have a coach, told me to run three laps around the perimeter of the park. I had never done that before and I really didn’t want to at the moment. It’s so funny how you can talk yourself out of something before really giving it your all and I’m no different. As I was finishing my first lap, the thoughts running through my head went something like this:
“I’m gonna run two laps and tell him I ran three.”
“I don’t really need to do three laps.”
“This is to damn hard!”
“I’m gonna stop after this lap and walk for a while.”
“I just can’t do this!”
CRAZY!!! My mind was telling me all sorts of foolishness and if I allowed myself to listen to the negative chatter, I would have stopped and not completed my run.
Fortunately, I choose to ignore it and completed my three laps. As a reward, I took a photo and posted it on my social media platforms.
Lesson three that I learned from running 13.1 miles is that it helps to work with others who are moving in the same direction. The first time I trained for a half marathon, I got online and found a training schedule. I held myself accountable! I’d run every day, according to the schedule…but I always ran alone. This time around, I’ve joined a running group, I run with my coach and other ladies who are also training for a race. It makes a HUGE difference when you are training with people who have similar goals. I can measure my progress and push myself further with a group rather than doing it alone.
Lesson four has to deal with competition. I’ve been told that I’m the only person I need to compete with. I’ve also been told that there is nothing wrong with competition among others. What I’ve come to realize is that competition is only worth a lick when I have done MY best! When I’ve given MY all! It doesn’t matter what someone else does if I do a half ass workout. When I’m having the negative chatter in my head or my arms feel like lead or I feel like I can’t take another step…when I PUSH beyond all those feelings or situations, I know that at that moment, I’m doing my best.
There’s always the next race to train for and I’m looking forward to racing day, which is right around the corner. Before I start thinking about the next race, I need to finish the race in front of me. So many lessons, so little time…but this is a great start! Diva Half Marathon here I come…
What about you…have you thought about running a 5k or half marathon? What’s stopping you? Come on over to Facebook and let me know.