After the half marathon, I decided to take some time off from all forms of exercise. Not only had I burnt myself out training, but I felt like I had really forgotten the real reason I was running. Because I had made running a chore, I no longer enjoyed it as I had before. Running in central park used to be something I did for fun and for myself, not because I HAD to get in a 4 mile run that day.
So after a few weeks of little structured exercise, I’m ready to get back into it! But first, I should recap my experience from the half!
Overall, it was great! I was extremely nervous at the start as I have never raced before in my life, and my first race was a half marathon. Of course, there was a freak heat wave and it was almost 80 degrees at 6:30 in the morning on my way to the race. I was completely unprepared to run in the heat, but knew the key was not to push it. Looking back on my training, the only thing I wish I could change was going on more long runs. They were part of my training schedule, but always fell on the weekends where I was traveling or simply didn’t have the time to devote to a 10-mile run. I didn’t realize how important those long runs were, and had only done one, 8 mile run prior to the race.
This time around I’m not going to constantly make excuses for not going on my long runs because 6 miles into the half, I was hurting. Had Joanna not been there to push me along I know I wouldn’t have made it in the time I did.
Although the race was both physically and mentally challenging, the feeling of crossing the finish line after all of your training and hard work is like nothing I’ve experienced before. I now know how people can become addicted to racing. Seeing all of my friends and family at the finish line made it even more worth it.
In the days following the race I felt lost with no training or any sort of long-term fitness goal in my future. I decided to sign up for another half marathon – the NYC half – on August 18th. i’m approaching this race very differently. I’m going to incorporate cross training and speed work into my routine, which I had included in my last training schedule – but skipped over just like my long runs. But I also want to make sure that this time it’s for me and my love for running, and not made into a chore.
The jump start to my (re)training for the next half was the JP Morgan corporate challenge last week. I thought running a 5k would be simple, considering I was in decent shape, but running 3.5 miles after not running for almost 2 months was definitely a challenge. However, Nolan decided to let me run with him for the first time (!!!) in this race, so that was definitely what kept me going.
I’m excited to train for this next race and am not going to let myself get burnt out. I have realized that although running is definitely physical, a major percentage of it is mental. It’s definitely not as easy as it looks!
I’ll be posting more frequently as my training gets more intense, and also writing about some major transformations I’ve made to my diet over the last few weeks!
I’m also posting a few photos of Joanna and I from the half that her wonderful husband took before the race!