Hola! I am officially over the half way point in my half marathon training! I came to this realization last Friday morning when I was double checking the training chart to see how much I had to run that day. Nothing is worse than realizing that you did the wrong workout after you had just done a workout! So yes, according to my training plan, I am currently on week 6, which means that after this week, I only have 3 weeks to go before race day! Eeeeep! The first thing that crossed my mind upon this awareness was “Holy sh*t Sam, you only have 3 weeks to go!” This has got me feeling a lot of different, polar-opposite emotions right now, so let me break it down for you!
The main feeling I have is one of anxiousness because of the timing. As of now, my training plan is increasing in mileage and the amount of speed work I have to do is a lot more demanding than when I had first started. Ladies and gentlemen, we’re in the big leagues now! Add this to the fact that exams and presentations are coming up in the next few weeks, you have a pretty good idea of how busy my schedule is. The last registration cycle for next spring is just around the corner, as I need to start finalizing my last semester of my undergraduate career. The timing is not the greatest, but I’m gonna take the optimistic approach and see it as a sign that I need to continue to manage my time well and hope that everything will work out!
Being aware that I have completed half of my half marathon training will I am in school and am working part time gives me a sense of immense sense of pride. It is honestly not my intention to sound self boasting, but I do think that it’s healthy to give yourself credit where it is due. As busy as I am this semester and as academically demanding as my classes are, I feel that training for the half marathon gives my life structure and focus. I almost feel like I am running on a cross country team again, except of the fact that I am my coach and team simultaneously. One positive change I realized since I started training was that I am a lot less stressed out and more calm whenever I am faced with a problem or issue. I didn’t realize this until I missed my first morning run. I had slept in and didn’t have enough time to go run for 4 miles and ended switching training days. That day I didn’t run, I noticed that I was a lot more sluggish and cranky. I guess you can saw that running is my form of therapy and my energy source.
The last feeling I have is slight fear and apprehensiveness. So far in my training, I have been pretty consistent in my 400s. One main thing I haven’t been the most consistent in the Sunday long runs. I’ll admit that I do have to stop once or twice during those long runs to stretch and what not and it’s making me doubt my ability to complete the half marathon in under 2 hours. I know that I have to run at a 9:09 min/mile pace in order to complete that goal. I ran my first half marathon in 2:11 and I remember feeling just so proud of myself for even finishing. I think that because I know I can run a half marathon, this upcoming race is more about running faster rather than just finishing. For here on out, I’ll just use that feeling of intimidation as self motivation to train even harder. I will also have to be aware of when to give myself and my body a break; I do not want to get sick especially now that it’s flu season!
The question of “What if I can’t finish in under two hours?” is always in the back in my mind. But what if I can? What if I can finish in under two hours and set a new PR in the process? Then I’ll be the happiest girl alive and take pride in the sweat and blisters that I put in to earn that time. All that negativity and uncertainty will be replaced by fierceness and appreciation. Ultimately, I am definitely excited to race on November 6 and leave my work on the pavement to prove itself!