Here We Go Again!

Today marks the first day of a 15-week marathon training plan toward Twin Cities on October 6th. It will be my 2nd marathon. I’m going to force my head to sit straight on my shoulders and do the following starting today:

I’ve been playing games with myself since Memorial Day weekend when I didn’t run the race I was hoping to run at Bayshore. I missed my goal by 1:16. It was the first half marathon since last April that I didn’t run a personal record. I knew this day would come. Before each half marathon, I’d ask myself (and others), “what’s going to happen if I don’t run a personal record this time?” and “how am I going to feel?”.  Yes, I assumed I’d be disappointed and that the first post-race beer wouldn’t taste quite the same if I failed. Bottom line: I knew that I’d get down on myself despite knowing that every race is a different beast to conquer and you never really know how the race will turn out despite a consistent training plan and whole heck of a lot of determination.

These past few weeks, I threw an internal temper tantrum and the only person it affected was me. I was bummed. I ran but I wasn’t happy about it. I went through the motions but didn’t enjoy the miles. I rarely experienced a “runners high” and my disappointment carried over into my work. Easy runs seemed really difficult because of my bad attitude. I found reasons to be unhappy about other things because running wasn’t giving me the kick I needed anymore. I’ve learned a lot about myself since running Bayshore.

I know this post probably sounds dramatic. So what if I missed my goal by a minute?! I still ran a great race! Jenny (Version 2010) would have smacked me in the face for not celebrating my accomplishment. But we all go through these highs and lows. It was just the first time that I experienced a “low” that caused my motivation to waver. I allowed my disappointment to get the best of me, but  I always know that I’ll get myself out of the funky part of not performing well. I’m hardwired to get back into action and stop pitying myself.

It just took time and a pep talk to make sure I’m ready and willing to have fun again. So that’s what I’m going to do.

I’ll run my first speed session of the training cycle tonight and see what my legs (and heart) are made of. I’ll push myself because I know that I can. And I’ll celebrate those small victories because they are what make the big ones possible. I can be an extremely impatient person, but running makes me patient. I’m going to “exhale ‘can’t, inhale ‘can’, and LACE UP” because I’m happier when I do.

When was the last time you were in a funk? How did you get out of it?

-J

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6 thoughts on “Here We Go Again!

  1. Amy says:

    I actually had a very similar melt-down yesterday (albeit over a 10-K and not a half marathon). Hopefully rededicating yourself with your training kick-off will help get you out of your funk!

    Chicago will be my first marathon, and I’m hoping to BQ. I’m so glad that you’ve shown that it can be done!

    Good luck with training!

  2. Meg says:

    This is a great post. Dealing with missed goals is one of the biggest challenges I’ve faced since I starting running more races. I recently ran a race, and it was bad. I had sluggish easy runs with a faster average pace than that race. It was rough, and I beat myself up about it. Eventually, I realized I had suffered a case of burn out and decided to go back through my training log to pinpoint the issues. Sure enough, I found some patterns that I could change. After cutting back my mileage and training for a few weeks, I worked out a training plan that better suited my strengths and would help me work on the weaknesses.

    I really love this image, too. It’s so true – let go of the “I can’t” and embrace the “I can.”

    Good luck with this training cycle!

  3. Britt @ Chicago Runner Girl says:

    Girl you’re going to move MOUNTAINS this season! PRs are rare and it’s a tough lived reality when all of our hard work doesnt produce the results we dreamed of, but you are in the drivers seat! The achievement of your goals and dreams are there waiting for you to come chase them down. So believe in yourself an know that sometimes progress comes in smaller doses then we want and some dreams just take a bit longer to hunt down. Keep fighting the fight and sweating your tushie off along the lakefront!

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