February 4, 2014 by Amy B
Well, I guess I’m in this thing for real.
Hotel is booked (non-refundable) and half marathon registration complete, including my favorite part of the race reg process: picking what will inevitably be the wrong size finisher shirt. (THIS NEVER FAILS. TAKING BETS NOW.)
I’m setting a few goals for this race.
- My first thought was duh, a PR. My current half mara PR is around 2:05. I’d love to run a sub-2:00 race, which means shaving about 30 seconds/mile off that pace.But now? I’ll still shoot for that time, but I’m starting to think it’s kind of dumb to compare half marathons on different courses. That’s not even taking into consideration the differing weather conditions. I’ve never run Green Bay, so whatever time I end up with will be a PR for that course on that day in that weather.
- Have fun on a different course. I tend to race the same events over and over, mostly because it’s not easy to arrange childcare if Scott and I both want to run in a race. In fact, this happens, oh, once a year in St. Paul. The Green Bay course doesn’t look terribly interesting, but I’ll be running with friends (i.e., Team /var/run), who no doubt will provide plenty of entertainment and encouragement.
- Run the best race I can on that given day. There are so many things that factor in when it comes to race day. I’ve showed up for races prepared to the max only to wilt under 80 degree heat and crash and burn. I will try not to sweat the shit that is out of my control but…
- I will show up to this race prepared. When I trained for my first marathon, someone told me to “Respect the distance.” There have been many times I haven’t done that. How? By running in races I had no business of running in because I wasn’t properly prepared.
Now, this is not to say I don’t believe that the mere act of finishing a race isn’t an achievement WHEN YOU’RE TRAINED. But if you’re not? It’s called participation, yes, but it’s not respecting the mileage. Also, a sidenote: when you disrespect the distance, IT FUCKING HURTS LIKE HELL. And guess what: you deserve it.
So I will type this slightly intimidating Hal Higdon training program into my calendar and dutifully follow it. If I’m serious about my race goals, I need to be serious about the road TO those goals. Being faithful to the long training schedule this summer was key in helping me PR in MN; there is no way I could’ve run the race I did (even though it wasn’t the race I truly wanted) without training my ass off.
And I know – shit / life / other stuff happens sometimes and gets in the way of training. But laziness is no excuse. Apathy is no excuse. I go into a plan knowing that stuff will inevitably appear that might mean I’ll have to make adjustments, but generally speaking, there is usually a way to work around the obstacles. Sometimes that means waking up at 4:30AM and running before the sun gets up. Sometimes it means layering up in everything you’ve got and running in single digit weather. Yup, there will probably be a lot of that in the last few months of winter. Because Spring? Yeah. We don’t really have that season.
And with that, the first race of the season is booked. Hopefully it will give me a solid base to build on as training ramps up for the other events I’m hoping to do this year.