This blog is intended up document my running journey. The ups and the downs. I’ve tried to fight the temptation to re-touch the snapshot of my life that I provide here (although I am known to crop and filter my Instagram photos…). So here is a moment of honesty. I am running the Phoenix Marathon in seven days, and I am trying to run a Boston Marathon-qualifying time there. And, this week, I am freaking. the eff. out.
I knew this was a risk. I knew that running becomes something different when I am chasing a time goal, especially one that is a “reach.” In many ways, I have been here before. But there is no turning back now. So, in addition to trying to be honest on this blog, I am hopeful that putting my anxieties down on internet “paper” will help me release them and move forward. Excuse me if this devolves into a stream of consciousness…
Let’s start with the low-hanging fruit. I am nervous because I question my training. During Kiawah, I told myself that I had so much oxygen at sea level compared to Colorado, that I had trained so well, that my runs had been on much harder terrain. I had a huge confidence boost. I don’t have that any more. For the past two months my training has looked, well, a lot like all the other training I’ve done for all those other races where I didn’t BQ, where I didn’t PR. How can I expect to squeeze more juice out of that same training now?
I had planned to rely on some pre-race weight loss to help bridge the gap between my Kiawah time and my BQ time, in addition to making up for the lack of altitude training the past two months. But the truth is that I have not adhered to my diet as closely as I had hoped. Predictably, as a result, I have not seen the results I was aiming for. I have worked very hard for a long time to develop a healthy relationship with food. But when I am stressed, the need to be in control can begin to creep back into my life. And as my race draws near, these feelings — now bound up in my larger goal of earning a BQ — can become harder to brush off.
Inevitably, my pre-race anxieties become generalized, spilling over into topics much more broad and much more weighty than whether I BQ in Phoenix. What am I doing with my life? No, seriously. Every day I am closer to death. The specter of motherhood looms ahead of me. Every wasted day, it nears.
Aaaand… I think I’ll just stop there.
I know this is passing. I didn’t feel this way for most of the week — just in a few, panicked moments. But then I went to an Orangetheory class, sweated out my stress, and felt a ton better. I’m hoping to keep up some light workouts for the next few days, not enough to wear myself out, but enough so that I don’t feel like a lazy blob. And I have my DEXA scan this week, so I will try to hold judgment on my diet success or failure until then. And the best cure: get myself outside this weekend!
How do you beat the pre-race stress???