I’ve been MIA for a while – like a 2-month-long while – but I feel like it’s time to get back to this writing business. Part of the reason I have neglected this is because marathon training go around has been rough for me. Tough mentally. School and work stress, changing schedules, and starting a new job has been a roller coaster, and the physical stress of training was the cherry on top of a stress-sundae. I was tired and burning out fast. Thankfully, after some hard weeks and harder runs, I adjusted my training schedule to finally be at a place that I think will work – now I am back on track (with just 5 weeks until the Teton Dam Marathon, eep!).
April 8th was the day that we were all looking forward to, the Riverton Half Marathon (I promise Tate was looking forward to it… even if it’s just for the purpose of it being over!). Coming into the race I had high hopes of the perfect, sunny day with the slightest breeze and being able to finish in 1:45. I thought it was a realistic goal for myself. That morning we woke up to rain, a bit of wind, and ice cold temperatures.
I said goodbye to my goal time pretty quickly.
I had my Garmin set to be my pacer, but because of the rain and cold I didn’t want to expose my skin if I had to – meaning I gave up the thought of looking at my watch so my hands could stay a little warmer (Note: get waterproof gloves, freezing hands hurt).
Thus I decided to run by effort and give up the pace, something that I honestly haven’t done in a while.. This ended up being dangerous – it almost gave me an excuse (multiple times) to stop, slow down, or walk up the hills (THE HILLS). But I didn’t. I don’t know why, but I didn’t stop. There was something inside of me that kept saying “one more mile,” even though I was freezing and soaked. Maybe it was because I knew I had dry clothes waiting for me at the finish line (and I was sure hoping for hot chocolate at the end).
This run helped me build the mental toughness and determination that I so needed.
In the end, I surprised myself and finished in 1:35 – TEN MINUTES FASTER THAN MY GOAL AND I DIDN’T EVEN PACE MYSELF PEOPLE. I ran by effort. I was shocked and almost broke down in tears (partly because I was proud of myself, but also because there was no hot chocolate and it was so cold I couldn’t move my hands). But I couldn’t have been happier.
I learned that effort can be just as, if not more effective than the watch.
After finishing, I went back to find Tate, he wasn’t too far behind. I was able to run the last mile and a half with him, and watch as he crossed the finish line as well. I am so proud of all of his hard work training for this race.
I couldn’t be more proud of everyone’s hard work and determination leading up to the race. I kind of dragged my family in to this with me (aka signed everyone up then told them they might want to start running for a race) but everyone trained and finished strong!
We do it for the bling. Obviously.
After everyone’s hard work, we treated ourselves – fondue, pedicures, and massage chairs. Gotta start the recovery right!