Let Me Sulk This Week

Thursday, April 2, 2015

This week I’ve been bad. I’ve ate like crap – including the two Yum Yum donuts and large coffee this morning. I haven’t run once since the half on Sunday. I needed a week of sulking and not caring…not caring what I eat…not caring if I run…I needed a break.

This past Sunday was the LOVE Run half marathon in Philadelphia. With a pretty remarkable year of running for me last year, I hoped to continue that in 2015 with the LOVE Run being my first true test since the marathon last November.

I hardly gave myself any time off after the marathon and I quickly got into training again in December, finding THE Run Club and running outside in bitter temperatures, only hitting the treadmill less than 5 times. (Cold weather, but so worth long distances outside than inside.) I’ve been training hard, running constant hills in Souderton, pushing myself to catch up to faster runners in the Club. I was excited to hit the spring race season with lots of miles under my belt, probably more than any other season yet.

But sadly, I walked away on Sunday with tears coming down my cheeks at the finish line with pure disappointment. I grabbed my medal, I didn’t even want to put it around my neck, and as I curled around the corral to meet Taylor and Kristin, I saw Taylor and broke down.

I know I’m nuts and I know I put too much pressure on myself, but I wanted to do better. I wanted the 2-hour or sub-2 hour time. I hit 2:01 during my peak training of the marathon last October and I was ready to do better. But I didn’t…and what is eating me inside is that I could have. But I gave up. I mentally gave up on Sunday.

While I wanted two hours, I ended up getting 2:04:38. I know, I know, you’re thinking, Amanda seriously – 4 minutes off. Yeah well that four minutes is a big chunk of time in the running world. My fellow runner friend Kristin who was also there on Sunday of course tried making me feel better as temperatures were freezing and winds were over 10 mph. But I didn’t care – that didn’t help my sadness.

I was on target, I was on track…I was WAY ahead…flying out of the gate (the Souderton hills HAVE helped lots!) Through mile 7 I was cruising, loving the course, loving the fans, loved running through Philly as always….but by mile 9, that’s when shit hit the fan.

With two MASSIVE hills (which we all know about) they of course were challenging and backtracked everyone…that’s okay though, I was way ahead of pace. But come mile 10 that trek back down Martin Luther King Blvd. to the Art Museum is always the death of me. Why? It’s a flat road, straight shot. But it is, it always is, every race! Step by step I looked down at my watch and tenths of seconds ticked away…I knew I need a 9:17 pace to get to my 2:01 I had in October…9 min. mile…9:08 mile…fuck fuck fuck!!

I thought of Liam…it gave me a burst, but I just didn’t have it. Seconds clicked, my heart was in my throat, I wanted to throw up (almost two times),  And just like that I looked at my watch…my chance was gone. 9:18 mile pace. As my heart gave up, so did my legs…it was the longest three miles to the finish line.

As I passed the 13 mile marker I knew I was almost there and my eyes began to well…I saw my best friend Donavan and her parents, it took everything out of me to smile and give a happy wave. I didn’t even look at the finish clock (as it is always off for me because I don’t start at the actual gun time.) I thought of Liam as I crossed the finish line and did a posed starfish jump at the finish line (that will be a fun picture to see.) But the second I landed on my feet the water pockets released and there I was. Crying, sulking, pissed, disappointed, ready to GTFO of Philly. (As I was surrounded by hundreds who were excited whether it was a new PR, their first half marathon, etc.)

Like I said, I know I’m too hard on myself. I’m happy I finished and I’m proud to say I beat my spring half marathon time from Wildwood last year barely (2:04:46) and I’m proud to say that was half marathon #8.

But I need a little regrouping.

I'll be back on the wagon come Monday...maybe even sooner. I’m scheduled to run the Brooklyn Half Marathon on May 16 with my friend Christy. I’m excited for a new city and new race, but I might just run this one to run. (that’s at least what I tell myself.) Go in with no expectations and enjoy it! After Brooklyn I think I’m going to take a little break from the race scene…maybe only stick to a few 5ks here and there and continue to encourage my new running friends and help my friends who are below my pace to get faster.

Regroup, get my head straight, enjoy the miles – purely enjoy them like I was last year!

But no matter what I remember the following 1 Corinthians 9:26 “So I run with purpose in every step.”

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