About a million years ago (or, I don’t know, maybe more like 7?), I ran a half marathon with my BFF Jami. I didn’t exactly follow a training plan, but I ran all the time leading up to the race, which, I assumed, would equate to the race being a piece of cake. For the record, it was actually my first race of any length, ever. And, in case you didn’t already guess this, it was not a piece of cake.
It was hard. It hurt. Somehow, my extra tight IT bands irritated my stomach and required us to stop at just about every rest area on the three-hour drive home.
Right after crossing the finish line, cup-half-full-Jami started talking about how great that was and how we should sign up for another one. Meanwhile, I dragged myself, Army-crawl-style, over to the bagels, and lamented my stupidity in ever signing up for a race of that length and vowing to never, ever do something so idiotic again.
You know where this is going, right?
So, January 29, I’m running in the ING Miami Half Marathon. I have a few friends who are also running it, albeit much faster than I plan to run, and for the most part, I’m really looking forward to having a good time. But, there’s still a part of me that remembers the post-race limping and gastrointestinal, umm, excitement that followed my previous 13.1 mile journey, and, well, I’m a little nervous.
Fine, a lot nervous.
I’m sure I’ll talk a lot about this over at Fit Bottomed Girls (I’m doing a weekly blog post over there these days — you should check it out!), but the thing that’s keeping me from freaking out too much is that I actually know what the hell I’m doing now. I’m following a training plan that will (hopefully) keep my knees and plantar fasciia and all that stuff healthy and still help me keep close to a 10 min/mile pace (which is about a minute per mile faster than I did my first half, for those keeping score at home).
I understand that drinking Gatorade and eating Gu is actually super duper helpful when I start feeling like I don’t have anything left, and that not drinking/eating things during a long run like that isn’t actually beneficial in the weight loss department. And I’ve got a lot of friends who are running the same distance on or close to that date, so I’ll have plenty of people who will fully understand my bitching.
So, yeah. Four days after I turn 32, I’ll run 13.1 miles. Happy freaking birthday to me, right?