Running is no joke. This is probably why people just don’t hop on a treadmill and decide to start running. They know better. I should have known better, but I didn’t.
One thing I knew for sure about my half-marathon training- I did NOT want to use the group training/running classes such as Luke’s or RunOn. Yes, I know it is a great program. Yes, I know it’s better to run in a group because there are people to keep you motivated. I was fully aware of all of that. Simply put, I hate exercising with people. Going to the gym with strangers is one thing. Going to the gym with a friend is completely different. I am extremely competitive, and I end up pushing myself too far. I don’t want to increase my injury rate any higher than it already is. It’s just better for me to do things alone.
So, I did what everyone does when they need advice, I Binged it. (#thingsnoeversays). I did Google it and stumbled upon Hal Higdon’s Half Marathon Novice Training. It seemed perfect. I calculated 12 weeks back from my ultimate race in December and determined September would be the official start to my training season. In the meantime, I needed to be able to run 3 miles at least 3 times a week without wanting to pass out. Luckily, I was already able to do, three wouldn’t be that bad right?
When am I ever going to learn?
I carefully pushed myself slowly but surely to the 3-mile mark. I worked out nearly everyday. I ran 4 times a week just to keep my body warm. I changed my eating habits a lot and started drinking more water because I quickly realized when I’m hydrated, I run better. Duh, Victoria.
That faithful day in September was quickly approaching. Hmmm, I thought to myself. The race is going to be outside. Perhaps, I should try running outside a few times to see how I feel. So, I headed to the famous Dallas landmark, Katy Trail. What a difference it is?! There is no belt pushing you to move faster or you’ll get flung off the machine. Nope, there is only your feet and the pavement.
After the first 1/4 mile, I AGAIN realized, there had to be a rhythm to my breathing, my pace, everything I did or I wasn’t going to make it 1 mile, much less 13.1. I felt defeated for another 1/4 mile, and then I changed my thinking. Best decision ever.
Well, hello there epiphany. Running is an equal combination of training your body and your mind. Once I figured out what I needed to do physically, I had to get my mind right to make it all 13.1 miles. Little did I know how important that epiphany would be for not only my training, but also my BIG race!