It's been a busy fall. So busy, in fact, I haven't really mentioned much about my St. Jude Half Marathon training I've technically been doing since the end of September.
St. Jude will be my 4th half marathon in 2012 and my 6th overall. Craziness.
However, I have to say, the training for this one has been much more mentally difficult for me. After my triathlon in July, I decided to "take a break" from endurance events. The triathlon marked my 4th one in 2012 and I knew I had St. Jude on the calendar in December. My body and mind needed a break. I continued to swim and spin through early September. I've ridden my bike several times in late summer and into this fall, but I kind of stopped running very much at the end of the summer.
The first 4 weeks of "training" were dismal. As in, I don't think I had one week where I completed all runs as scheduled until mid-October. Oops.
And I've been slow. My half marathon race time in April was a sub-3 hour, I ran a 5K in August in around 38 minutes. Those are around 13:30 min/mi and 12:21 min/mi paces respectively. My times the last few weeks have been in the 14-15 min/mi range. It took me a a few weeks to get ok with that.
I don't have any time goals for St. Jude. The goal is to have fun with friends and finish.
The problem I have had the last 4 weeks or so though is that I wasn't ENJOYING running it was a chore, but finally tonight I felt JOY while I was running. It was getting dark and it felt SO GOOD to not let the time change, or that my mom left town from a 4 day visit, or the fact I've eaten my weight in southern, bacon fat, fried, butter filled food over said 4 day visit be an excuse. Apparently, I'm fueled by fried chicken because my 4 mile run clocked in at a 13:30min/mi pace tonight.
It felt good.
It makes me a little less scared about the 10 miler I have on the calendar for Saturday. It makes me a little less concerned that I'm the least trained for this race more than any other race I've ever done. I always do a 12 miler before a half, but since I goofed off the first month of training, I don't have time. It will be ok though because I will finish the race.
And I will have fun.