After running the Palmetto Bluff Half Marathon in early March I got the news that I had to dial back on my favorite way to sweat, and by this I mean to stop running for a while. Now, how long will “a while” be? That’s what I didn’t know. I learned that I needed to have surgery to remove a fibroid that was doing me no good and sweating in our beloved southern heat was a no-no.
Thank God for my new-found love as an indoor cycling instructor. Sweating in a controlled environment was allowed but y’all know I hate a dreadmill, especially if I don’t even have a race to train for so I completely stopped running and focused on spinning, strength training and yoga.
Several complications arose along the way and finally 10 days ago the doctor told me that I could start running again. The thing is that I haven’t hit the pavement in the past 7 months so I was excited but scared at the same time. I didn’t know what to expect.
My first through was: “I have 4 weeks until the Savannah RnR, maybe I can do the half”, but then I laced up my shoes and went for my first run in a 90-degree weather with super high humidity. I couldn’t complete 3 miles.
It's interesting because I’ve been working out but I feel like I completely lost my running shape. At this point I started thinking that maybe I could find someone to do the relay with and build up to 6 miles. But I like pushing my body to its limits. I like to feel uncomfortable, and miserable and then joyful… It may seem weird but the struggle is what keeps me going.
I was finally able to run 3.1 miles and decided to give the treadmill a shot thinking that maybe the AC could help? I was able to run 6 miles. Now here’s the deal: I know what I’m capable of and it’s extremely frustrating to not be anywhere near there.
My average half marathon pace is between 7:40 and 8:00 min./mile. Right now I’m struggling running 3 miles holding a 9:45 min./mile. Actually the word frustration is not even close to what I’m feeling.
So, I have 2 choices:
1. To be angry, upset, depressed and frustrated because of where my running is at right now.
2. To suck it up, embrace it, push through it and move forward.
Well, I’m going to go with #2. At this point I’m not even sure that I can run 13.1 miles, going to try to run 10 this weekend. The weather is not helping at all so I’m really hoping that the temps will drop soon.
So the short answer is yes, I just signed up for the Savannah Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon on November 4th. It’s extremely hard for me to put myself out there knowing that I’m in the worst running shape I’ve been in years, knowing that I’ll finish in over 2 hours, knowing that I’ll probably have to take walking breaks. But you know what? Running is about me and not about anyone else. It’s easy to get caught up on what other people that know what I’m capable of may think, but nothing will get in between me and what I want to achieve.
I believe this will be a great opportunity for me to get back on track, back to the sport that has given me so much and back to the community that I so adore. This will be an opportunity for me to push my boundaries while finding ease in the struggle. I’m doing this race for myself, to leave behind all the not so good stuff that life has thrown at me since last spring, to close that door and walk through a new chapter of my life that I’m so looking forward to.