The Around The Bay race in Hamilton is coming up fast. Thirty days from now, I’ll be pinning on a number for my first-ever entry into this legendary race, older than the Boston Marathon and riddled with hills my calves are already screaming about.
I ain’t ready. I don’t feel ready anyway.
People on social media are crushing elevation for dinner and running 18-milers to prepare. Meanwhile, I’ve been struggling to fit in solid runs with all of the snow and ice we’ve been getting, and my general lack of mental energy.
I had a sturdy training plan all mapped out for ATB, and this winter’s terrible weather has forced me to tactically “wing it”, while my mental health has made believing in myself into a challenge all on its own.
Now, I’ve hit the “I am so very very sick of training” wall at the same time I’ve hit the “I am so very very scared of failing at this race” wall. We’re 4 weeks away from race day.
Cue: freaking out.
This is not how I imagined this training season going.
On the other hand, that’s the cliché “running is a metaphor for life” kicking in right? Things won’t always go according to plan and you just have to show up and do your best. You have to keep reminding yourself that you chose to do this, and you love it. It helps to remember that the worst thing that could happen is survivable. It also helps to imagine hot cups of coffee and tight hugs and tears at the finish line.
More than anything, it helps to remember that I haven’t been lying around doing NOTHING, even if I haven’t been sticking to my ambitious plan.
I’m still running 4x a week, with my long runs building in distance. I’ve been trying to incorporate hill work—last week I unplugged my headphones and ran repeats for about an hour, just me and the road. (This week, I had plans to push it even further and run MORE hills—and then we got 20 cm of snow dropped on us. I did as much as I could. I ran until I REALLY didn’t want to.)
I’ve got four weeks to mentally and physically prepare.
In the meantime, I’m still waiting to be excited. I’m still waiting for lightning.