Thursday, May 17, 2012

Two Days....

On December 30, 2011 when I registered for the Fargo Marathon, I really didn't put much thought in to what it would feel like to be two days away from actually running a marathon. 

I started training on January 15th.  So, you can see why it didn't really seem real until very recently.  That was roughly 18 weeks of training for one day - one day that is quickly turning in to one of the biggest days of my life.   Now, I have two beautiful little girls and nothing will ever trump the two days when they came in to the world.  But, with the anticipation and the work that has been put in to this marathon - it's pretty high on the list.

I had thought about writing this whole series of posts leading up to the marathon.  What I was going to wear (UA compression shorts, Team Sparkle running skirt, black tank/shirt, sparkle headband), what I planned on eating this week (pretty much anything I can get my hands on, I kid, sort of), how much water I was going to drink (a ton, and then a ton more), my last visit with my PT Pete (I will indeed write about this because he is amazing!) and oh so much more.  But, here's the deal - I feel like most of that is good information but it doesn't really convey how I am feeling about this whole thing. 

I am not sure how to convey how I am feeling about this whole thing to be honest. 

I am scared.  This is a huge deal, I have not done anything this huge.  Or at least it doesn't feel like I have.  Yes, I have birthed two very healthy babies - but my body was built to do that.  Some may argue that our bodies were made to run also, but I don't think it's quite the same thing! Just my opinion.

I am excited.  I can hear the cheering, I can see the signs, I can hear the music.  I can't wait.

I am losing my mind.  Yes, this is the absolute, freaking truth.  I had envisioned writing this post about how awesome I feel, how I am going to kick this marathon's ass.  Yeah, right.  Maybe if I run a second one I will have all of those bad ass feelings.  But, today - I am simply consumed. 

I am doubting my training.  I followed a great plan - Hal Higdon is a genius and I don't doubt the plan he wrote.  I doubt how well I executed it.  Did I run every prescribed run - nope.  Did I run every prescribed run in the manner it was supposed to be run - nope.  I made modifications - I listened to my body when necessary.  But, two days away, I question if I put enough miles in.  Somewhere in my brain, I know that I did.  And according to my PT, my body is physically ready for this challenge.  I just need to listen. 

I am proud.  I am going to be able to say that I ran a marathon.  That's kind of a big deal, right?  I think so.  If you had asked me last January when I started running, if I wanted to ever run a marathon, I would have laughed at you and I would have laughed loud and hard.  I just wanted to be able to run a 5K without walking.  Proud.

I have run roughly 400 miles in the last four months.  That is a drop in the bucket for a lot of runners.  For me, that is a lot of miles.  There were weeks during my training that I ran 30-35 miles.  For me, that is a lot of miles.  There was this one day when I ran 20 miles.  For me, that is a lot of miles.  On Saturday I am going to run 26.2 miles.  For me, that is a lot of miles. 

My mission is to run the majority of those 26.2 miles with a smile on my face and with pride in my heart.

There are some people in my life who have been very pivotal in making sure I made it to this point. 
  • My husband, who every Saturday for the last 18 weeks took care of our kids while I hit the trails, sometimes for hours. 
  • And my kids, who can't be in Fargo, but who have been my best cheerleaders, I love you both so much!
  • My best friend Melissa, who faithfully took those to trails with me and who is going to be running her first half marathon in Fargo, I could not be more proud of you! 
  • My mom, dad, step mom, and in laws - who all took turns watching the girls for me during the week so I could get a run in -whether it was at the lake, at the gym or at the local high school - you all made it possible for me to log the miles and for that I am forever grateful.  
  • My running friends - the one who encouraged to me to start in the first place and the ones who kept me going.  The running community is a neat place and I am so honored to be a part of it.
  • To my friends and family who have checked in with me, come to other races to cheer me on or race with me, and have loved me and believed in me even though I may not have been the most attentive these past few months.  You are my rocks and I thank you all so much!
  • Every person who has logged on to this blog, followed me on Twitter and Facebook, and left your words of encouragement, you have all continued to inspire me with your own badassery - thank you, thank you, thank you. I will think of all of you during the race on Saturday.
  • And, to all of my friends I have met through blogging who tirelessly encourage and support me.  There are sometimes people who scoff when you say you have met a friend online - I think they are missing out.  Some of you I haven't even had the privilege of meeting in person yet, but you support me no matter what.  I am eternally grateful to all of you!
I love you all so much and I run this for me, but I will be thinking of all of you as I check off each mile.  You will never know the impact you have all made to my life!

This last 18 weeks has taught me so much about myself.  I am a runner.  I am strong.  I am capable of doing hard things.  I have the ability to push myself farther than I knew possible.  And most importantly, I am loved. 

The next time you read this blog it will be authored by a marathoner. 

(I just re-read that last line)

Yep, I guess that is pretty badass after all!