I really don’t feel like writing this recap. In fact, I really didn’t feel like running yesterday’s half marathon. I knew it was a good time to run a race before Chicago, so I signed up. I also know that this race never leaves me feeling satisfied. But I showed up. And I ran. So I’ll write anyway because I know there is a silver lining in here somewhere.
I set a modified goal for this race to execute my race plan for Chicago. The first four miles I kept myself in control. I consciously slowed my effort. I did my best to respect the weather.
Mile 4-6 were a mental battle. Should I push? Should I take it easy?
I started reading Brene Brown’s new book Rising Strong while we were on our mountain vacation. There is so much in that book that I need to absorb.
I have become a master at reckoning. I am brilliant at owning my own story. I live it. I breathe it. I see, feel and recognize all my emotions. I know exactly how they connect to every aspect of my life.
This is the space I ran in yesterday. This is the space I’ve been running in all summer (all year! For years!). Yesterday’s race actually had nothing to do with yesterday’s race. In fact, I doubt it has anything to do running at all. Running is never about running for me. Running is about life. Running is about living. Running is about breath. I often wish I could separate the two. I wish running could be just running, but that’s not how I’m wired. It’s not how I work. Right now I’m struggling to navigate The Rumble. I’m stuck in the middle.
Mile 6-8 was a true rumble in my head.
“We can chose courage or we can chose comfort, but we can’t have both.” ~Brene Brown
My friend Heidi wrote about this statement days before the race (read it here). These words hung on me during the race. I wanted to chose courage, but I picked comfort. I seem to always pick comfort these days. Miles 6-8 I tried to rewrite my story. I tried to write a different script for how my races have been playing out these days, but I picked comfort instead.
If I’m being honest, I have no clue how to get to The Revolution. I’m stuck in The Rumble.
Around mile 8, a familiar face appeared in the crowd. I jumped in beside her. I asked her what her goal was. She was right where she needed to be. So I happily ditched my internal battle and ran beside her. The last five miles are quite possible the most fun, I’ve ever had on a race. I drank a beer. I enjoyed Popsicles. I ran through sprinklers. I cheered my friend on as we ran up and over the final bridge. As we turned on to the boardwalk, I heard a woman coaching herself to the finish line. She was desperately pleading for the finish line to appear. I took one look over my shoulder, saw her struggle, and told her to come on. Run with me. We’ve got this. Stay beside me. You are going to finish strong. For the last mile I pulled her with me. My heart swells as I think about that moment. As soon as she finished she let out a thank you and tears. It was her first half marathon. She had cramping at mile 6. And then with a simple statement, she reminded me of why I love running – I just pushed through it. And somehow it passes. Somehow your body just works through it.
Most days I feel like I’m nearly drowning in The Rumble. What is truth? What is self protection? What needs to change ?
If yesterday has a silver lining hiding inside of it, it is this: I know what needs to change. I need to get out of my head. I need to find the celebration in my own race. I need to push through it. I need to trust that somehow my body will work through it.
I am still struggling to squash the disappoint I have in my ability to preform in race day, but I know this is all part of the process.
If we are brave enough, often enough, we will fail…
The truth is that falling hurts. The dare is to keep being brave and feel your way back up.” ~Brene Brown
The journey is hard, I may struggle a lot, but there is no other way I want to live my life than with my whole heart.
Yesterday’s race is proof that I can live through the entire process. I lived it all: the reckoning (miles 1-4), the rumble (miles 4-8) and the revolution (miles 8-finish).
Maybe I do know how to do this!
Tomorrow is a fresh start, a new week on my training plan, and a very exciting new chapter for our family. Cole’s middle school adventure begins, and I have another chance to rewrite how my story will end. I have another chance to live this life with my whole (messy) heart.