Monday, December 14, 2015

12 miles of running = Fun

Really. I had so much fun running twelve miles yesterday with my dad. Well, actually, we ran 13.1 miles, but only 12 were really fun. The last 1.1 miles kinda hurt. But 12 miles of fun, was way more than I was hoping for.

When I first signed up to to run the Indy half marathon, I just wanted to go and run it with my dad. But, I did want to train right and really feel good doing it. Unfortunately, my leg had other plans for me, and I went into race day with my longest run only being 9 miles and really only running every other day, most weeks.

And so, by race eve, my goal was simply to be able to keep up with my dad. And, in the back of my head, I really wanted to run faster than two hours for the total time. And I met both of those goals. And it really was fun. As much as I love running, racing did not always equal fun for me. I loved racing and challenging myself and the competition and coming away with personal bests, and medals, and sometimes even winner's trophies. But, I was also a bundle of nerves. I would feel the pressure of my own expectations and the expectations of others. I set high goals and sometimes I would exceed them and feel an amazing emotional high from a sense of accomplishment. And other times I would walk away wondering if I had not succeeded due to physical or mental failings. But those days are long gone.

And now I run for different reasons. And this is also the reason I rarely enter races any more. I know I am no where near personal bests. And I want to be ok with that. And I entered this race, just because I could. And I think I ran with a smile on my face for the majority of the first twelve miles. And my dad had a blast. He clapped as we passed the bands. He raised his arms and waved at every camera. We just kept passing and passing and passing people as we ran. And with less than a mile to go, he let all the other runners around us know that it was time to go and "finish this thing!" I know I would not have run as fast had he not been there. Another runner thanked my dad for his encouragement in the last mile and told him that he set his best time by two minutes and he thought my dad had helped him with that.

I have to say that that last mile hurt. The medicine that I took to keep my leg from hurting was mostly effective. But, I still compensated. And my leg was tightening. But we did it. And it WAS fun.

And today, because of my lack of training, my body feels like it ran a full marathon. My toes have oozey blisters on them and my legs and back and even my arms are sore. Walking down the stairs is ridiculous. I think I am going to have to give my body a break from running for a little bit. But, the feeling I felt yesterday, was almost that same feeling I felt years ago when I was setting personal and school records when I ran. And the fact that I can have that feeling back, and still be a long way from where I once was, means, I think I am going to have to do it again.

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