This is Volume I of what will be a series of weekly posts chronicling my preparation for the Flying Pig Half Marathon. I figure writing about my training will keep me honest.
A few months ago I started running again. I had spent most of 2011 training for the Seattle Half Marathon which was the weekend after Thanksgiving of 2011. I then took several months off following a vacation and a broken toe. I had never really intended to stop running. Vacation turned to excuses. Excuses grew along with my waist. Before I knew it July had arrived. I finally put my shoes running shoes back on.
I registered for the Flying Pig Half Marathon this morning. I am now officially committed.
Training must now amp up. I love being outdoors. I love running by the Ohio River. I am not a fan of the treadmill. So, training in the winter will be tricky. I have all the cold weather gear to run outside most of the time, but darkness and wet conditions can complicate the agenda. I ran a relay marathon once in Washington, DC in February during a snowstorm, so I am no stranger to the elements. (I kinda like running when there is a bite to the air. It does not hurt all that much once you are out the door.) Regardless of the weather, I am never fast. I value diligence over speed.
Having completed one full marathon and four half marathons over the years, I have learned several things. I need a goal, a specific plan, and the right stuff. With that in mind, I joined an on-line training program that tells me exactly when and how far I need to run between now and race day. I will continue to use the app on my phone, that records how far and how fast I run, Pandora, and the heart rate monitor that I wear around my chest and wrist. I have all the accoutrements for success. Now I just have to do it.
My training program suggests running 4 days a week and cross training the other three days.
I have found a new yoga studio in which to cross train. It is situated on the route between work and home. Logistically speaking, it provides no excuse. The studio, the Yoga Bar, is located in a space that used to be a bar. The owner has kept the beautiful old bar in the entry to the space. The studio is warm and welcoming. (I was introduced to yoga by my Team In Training coach while I was preparing for the San Diego Rock-N-Roll Marathon in 2000.) I have not been on the mat much in recent months, so training is bringing me back to this important practice in my life.
By the time race day arrives, I will have already achieved my goal. I have learned victory is won long before the finish line. I suppose that is why I participate in races that require a certain amount of training. Joy will be on the open trail/road, on the yoga mat, and in noticing the seasons as the days lengthen in spring.
I look forward to writing about the journey. I promise to be honest. I promise to write about Sunday mornings when I sleep though my long runs, sore hips, the first time I am able to hold triangle pose without falling, and the first flower I see along my route.