Blogging my way to my next half marathon, trying to push to a different level seems to be part of my journey this time around. And gosh it has been anything but an easy one - to say the least. At my age a year older makes a difference in *everything* - speed, joints, agility, flexibility and sometimes just plain old 'fire in the belly'.
As I begin my fourth week of training, I'm clear that it is time to knuckle down to start facing those things that aren't always fun - running/ race walking on tired legs, pushing past discomfort and facing the dread of a steep hill and in high humidity. But since my last post I decided to really work to find the spark I needed to invigorate my training - mere fear of failure just wasn't enough (although it IS pretty powerful). Then came two things: 1) a book and 2) a cause. The book, which I highly recommend is called This Year I Will by MJ Ryan. It's a solid primer on how to make change permanent, and written in a way that you can use it as a field guide - walking through each step with you as you set focused specific goals, anticipate navigating difficult steps in the process and avoiding the pitfall of making slip ups into give ups. (Sound familiar??) But I still needed a fire so ignite my training - so enter the second reason to train - and hard. Enter Covenant House - a wonderful organization devoted to helping runaway and throwaway teens get back on their feet and find their way in the world. While lost in my own thoughts about finding a passion, I heard the director ask me if I had considered doing my half for Covenant House. Light bulbs went off and I haven't looked back. Of COURSE -running for these kids was just the ticket!!
So I'm on my way! This weekI am choosing to focus on * endurance*. Today I took it inside due to severe thunderstorms, and changed my lens through which to view training. It wasn't just a training run/racewalk. It was a training run/racewalk to prepare me to do just as well outside on Thursday. In other words, each training activity is to prepare me for the next - building the house brick by brick - instead of every day worrying about race day.
Every day until today I caved before my Gym Boss was finished and went home hanging my head.
Today I prevailed - 3.1 miles in 40 minutes - not land speeds but it was a consistent movement between running at 5.2 mph and race walking at 4.2 mph with variable terrain from flat to hills - doing my best to simulate outside.
The point is simply this - FIND THE FIRE! The FIRE will move you to do things you don't think you can do, and if you are doing it for a purpose that is important to you - no matter how hard the training, you'll step up to it.
I read that visualizing is half the battle. Before my Covenant House decision all I could picture were the parts of the course that were very hard for me. After my decision all I could see was how my commitment might help one more young person find their way in society - instead of landing in my office, sick and in need of treatment.
I have no idea how I will finish, but I know this - whether I run, racewalk, walk, limp, stagger or CRAWL I will cross that finish line. I have a higher purpose for doing this event; and I intend to be the bring it for the sake of those kids.
What set you on fire today? Do you have a fire? If not, find it and when you do, you will BRING IT!