I’m 12 runs and 50 miles into (i.e., right at the start of) a long block of training for my first half marathon, and I’m staring down the barrel of another 354 miles over 67 runs across the next 3 and a half months. When you look at it like that, it feels daunting.
Another way to look at it is: I’m now licensed to run for at least 3 hours every week, every run making me stronger, tougher and faster. No excuses or wriggling – I have some running to get done.
In the meantime: it’s proper hot here, and I didn’t win the internal struggle to get out of bed early enough to run before everyone else started their day today. I’m having trouble sleeping at the moment due to a non-running-related neck injury, so early runs don’t feel top priority just now. Which means slogging it out there after the heat of the day cools, maybe 8 o’ clock this evening.
Hottest day of the year today. Chilled white wine in the garden feels more inviting than lacing up and heading out – and that’s why having a training program makes a difference. It’s a structure on which you can hang all the conditionality which comes with any demanding pursuit: it’s too hot / it’s too cold / it’s raining / it’s sunny / I’m too tired / better if I do it tomorrow / it seems unfair to go now during [insert any family activity or challenge] / I’ve got a bit of a sore [throat, knee, toe, head]…
I’m not suggesting that there’s never a valid time to back off – there are real reasons we should slow down or pause in training – but you know when those come up. Guilt, tiredness, boredom, anxiety, fear of failure… these voices wheedle away at me in weak moments and splinter my determination. But the cool clear chime of the program pulls me into focus.
Better get this run done.
Postscript – did the run (super slow pace, as directed by both training plan and sanity) and felt fantastic. On the way home I picked up a bottle of Prosecco and strawberries for after dark supper with Tom, which were perfect. Is there ever a time when going for that run isn’t the best option?!