I laid down 20.3 miles Saturday.
To be honest, I was dreading this particular run more than any other on my schedule to Portland. Why? I’m not sure. Maybe it’s because 20 and I haven’t been the best of friends over the history of my running career. Or maybe it’s b/c mentally, a number that big totally, unapologetically f*s with you. (It does me.) Whatever the reason, this particular run was one of my most telling to date. (It revealed all kinds of truths…read on for the deets.)
Friday night, I asked Hubs if he’d run the last 5 miles with me. (Miles 15-20.) He obliged. The girl in me mistakenly thought we’d chat our a**es off during that last leg. Yeah, right. Lucky for him, my chat muscles were far too freakin’ fatigued by 18 to squeak out any words.
With a half mile to go, he glances over, raises his brow and says, “OK BK, let’s kick this sh*t into high gear.” I look at him incredulously and come back with, “WTF? There is no high gear here …there is ONE gear. I barely have enough gas in the tank to make it to the car, let alone to pick UP the freakin’ pace.” He pushes me anyway. (He’s that kind of guy.) So we “surge” to the finish.
20.3 miles. Boom.
Note: I looked at Hubs when we were done and said, “I’m not sure if I should high-five you or punch you in the mouth.” I chose the high-five, but don’t kid yourself…it could have gone either way.
Here’s what this run revealed:
- I am STRONGER than I was training for my first marathon. (Thank you Jesus.) Over 20 miles, I averaged a 10:05 pace, which is around 40 seconds faster per mile than my first marathon time. Granted, the last 6.2 miles [in a marathon] is where sh*t has the potential to blow out entirely, but if I continue to improve my strength and endurance, I WILL run my next marathon faster.
- It’s not very likely I’ll make my 4:16 goal. A huge part of me wants to cry out, scream at the Gods, roll around on the ground and beg for miracles. But the realist in me knows I’m doing everything I’m WILLING to do for that number.
- Post-run, I found myself at a crossroads. (And maybe someday you will, too.) Either I could be angry that my time wasn’t what I wanted/needed, or I could celebrate that I just ran 20.3 freakin’ miles. I chose to celebrate. How in the world can you berate yourself after such a heroic effort? I can’t…or better yet, I refuse.
I’ve learned one uber critical lesson on my journey to 26.2. A RUN NEVER LIES. It will always reveal if you ate well all week…or totally sh*t the bed on nutrition. It will unveil if your quads, core and back are strong enough to carry you home…or if you’ll struggle to cross the finish line. It will unabashedly shine a light on every last thing that’s NOT working in your life; not b/c it hates you…but b/c it sincerely wants you to fight for it, come back stronger and get sh*t right.
No wonder we all love the road…it’s one of the most honest places to be.
P.S. Do your runs “speak” to you? What do they say? (If you run any distance at all, you KNOW you always learn something.) Come on over and share! https://www.facebook.com/BrooksFirstMarathon
P.P.S. I laughed my ever-lovin’ a** off this weekend…some of you are logging outrageous activities in my 90 Days No Excuses Challenge. (Think sex, handstands, etc.) Don’t miss your chance to win a VIP day with me in Denver…we will ROCK our time together! Click here to get started or log your activity!
P.P.S.S. I caught a peek at a few guys doing tricks on their bikes yesterday…while their skills are undeniably awesome, I think I’ll stick to running:
And one last thing: I received a TON of notes from you over the weekend thanking me for keeping it real on this blog. I would never b.s. you…one, it’s just not my style and two, it wouldn’t serve anyone. So, thank you for lovin’ the truth…it keeps me telling the story. xo