Last week I sent an email to the Race Director for the Whistler Half Marathon and asked to switch my entry to the 10 km distance. And I struggled with doing so for a number of days, but I know that I’ve made the right decision.
See, as someone who has completed nine half marathons already, I know that I haven’t trained well for the half distance in June. I haven’t even trained well a little bit. Acknowledging that has really been where the struggle was because I LOVE the half marathon distance and to not be training my heart out this year kind of feels like a pair of shoes that were broken in on someone else’s feet.
It doesn’t feel like me.
Now, that being said, I will bump myself a bit here by saying that I have put in almost three years of hard running. You could say that I deserve a rest. Those three years are where I’ve put in the most mileage, made the most gains, gotten faster, set PRs and raced the most in the going-on-seven-years that I’ve been running regularly.
When people tell me that they just don’t like running, for the first time in a long time I can relate to that. It’s not exciting to me in the ways that it once was. Or maybe the real issue is that I’m not excited about the required training that comes with signing up for a race. I don’t want to “have to” run, I just want to “want to” run.
With two more half marathons on my calendar this year, I know I’m going to have to get over this funk at some point. I’m hoping with the clearing of snow from the trails around Whistler will help me get some of my stoke back – I do enjoy running in the trails, getting dirty and sharing an experience with friends in nature.
I’m actually excited to try the 10 km distance on race day because I know that it’s a tough route (we still have Blueberry Hill, among others). Can I maintain a sub-55 min PR on the Whistler 10km course? I’ll know soon enough.
There is no shame in recognizing that you won’t be prepared in time, and taking steps to keep yourself healthy. The running season is long if you sign up for all the races as I’ve done these last few years, short-changing myself on recovery time has caught up with me and I’m a smart enough runner to know that if I don’t listen now I may be forced to listen somewhere down the road.
Run safe, run smart!