That quote from Tina Fey was exactly what I was telling myself back in January when I signed up to run the Kentucky Derby MiniMarathon with James’ sisters. At the time, I wasn’t a total newbie to running, but I wasn’t really in good enough shape to take on half-marathon training in the amuont of time I had between sign up and race day… It was pushing it. I’ve run a couple of 5k races since Henry was born, and I ran my first 10k, the Giant Race in San Francisco, last August. But then I basically quit running from August – January. And yet I still went for it and signed up for this half marathon. Which is now coming up this Saturday, you guys.
I would not say I’m ready… but I know I did the best I could to prepare in the time I had. For a while I was feeling really mad at myself for even signing up. I felt like it had been a huge mistake to try to take on such a big challenge without being in better shape first or taking more time to get in shape for it. But it was already a done deal, so I just kept getting my butt out there and doing the best I could.
I got fitted for new running shoes (aren’t they pretty!), which made a big difference because my old shoes were more minimalist and didn’t give me enough ankle support for longer runs. I also learned about “refueling”, sipping on sports drink and nibbling on something sugary for energy throughout the later miles of the race, which is really what made me finally feel like I might survive. (My energy booster of choice is gummy bears :))
I also found this post from runner/writer Elyse Anders: I am Running a Half Marathon This Weekend and it is a Lot of Pressure, which helped me change my outlook about race day. I was being really hard on myself, feeling like I was going to be a failure if I couldn’t run the whole race, feeling like I was going to be embarrassed if I couldn’t keep up with my sisters-in-law. And this is exactly what I needed to read:
No matter how much of this race I end up walking, I know I worked hard over the past three months and I deserve to enjoy race day!! And I know I wouldn’t be in the shape I’m in now if I hadn’t had the pressure of the race motivating me to hit the pavement. I’d probably still be making excuses about why I was still not running. I also acknowledge that getting regular cardio isn’t just good for the body, it’s also good for the brain and I know I’ve needed the stress relief!
Since the race is the Kentucky Derby MiniMarathon, this also means that our family will be headed out on a Surprisingly Special Road Trip this week! Fingers crossed that it will NOT be a Surprisingly Sucky Road Trip… Louisville is about an 8 hour drive from where we live, and in our experience, Henry typically makes it about 2 hours into a long drive before he melts down…
So James has gone to the trouble of choosing locations for pit-stops every hour and a half along our trip to Kentucky! He looked for parks along the way where we can let the kids get out and stretch their legs and have a snack. We’re hoping that if we stop every hour and a half, maybe we can avoid a meltdown??? I don’t know… it might be a rough ride… but it will certainly be an adventure!