Not nobody, not no how!!!!!
Often at this point in training, it’s easy to become- for lack of a better word- LAZY. We’ve already put in so much mileage- more mileage than a lot of people EVER see- that our bodies become tired and we think: I can skip this run, it’s insignificant in the grand scheme of it all. Really what we are saying is that we are entitled. Entitled to become complacent.
I have to admit, I fall victim to these kinds of thoughts ALL THE TIME. In fact, three-plus years ago those thoughts would have turned into a date with the couch, a package of oreos and a plan ” to be good tomorrow.”
So when I woke up last Saturday morning still plagued by a fairly miserable sinus cold, a decision had to be made. Do I stay here in my fetal position or do I get off my butt and git ‘er done?
Don’t get me wrong. The decision wasn’t easy. How many of us can say we’d venture out for a nice, leisurely, <<ahem>> 3-hour <<ahem>> run when we have painful snot build-up in our lungs and nasal passages? I am telling you, dear friends and readers, that I would normally call that a solid excuse for a couch date; but as my finger reached slowly toward the snooze button, my conscience, which [side note] always seems to appear in the form of the Doorman of Oz, intervened.
I knew that I would not regret the decision to run as much as I would regret staying in bed to wallow. So I got out of bed (reluctantly), whipped on my running tights and set out to run 15 miles in the cold. Upon my arrival, one of my teammates said: “I was counting you out this morning!” And I smiled to myself because up until 3 years ago, I would have counted myself out, too.
Indeed, my last 4 miles were pretty rough. The NyQuil had dehydrated me causing some pretty painful leg cramping, but I never gave up. Not once. And I smiled through the obstacles reminding myself that I am healthy and I am alive because I push myself.
The reason I write about this today is because I want each of you to know that it is possible to hold yourself accountable and to expect extraordinary things from yourself even when you feel your worst. It’s the question I get asked most often: How do I get past the hard times? I have a simple answer: because I want to. I want to live. I want more tomorrow’s. Pushing myself in this way is a daily reminder that I can overcome obstacles, that I can achieve something. Of course I want to be healthy- this is true. But training for something of this magnitude is certainly character-building, a gift you can give yourself that is far more valuable than any pound lost, in my opinion.
I can never thank myself enough for having the balls [pardon my word choice, it just seems appropriate] to sign up for that first marathon as someone who’d never run a mile without stopping. The day that I submitted that application, my whole life changed. I discovered my will. I discovered that I finally value myself enough to strive for more. I discovered self-worth. And that, my friends, is priceless.
If you’d like to help me reach my goal for kids in need, you know what to do! : )