Register for a half-marathon.
Kidding. Well, not about the half-marathon part. Jeff and I registered last summer for the Indianapolis 500 Festival half-marathon. I've run it twice. And both times, the male winner was crossing the finish line as I was just entering the Speedway. (They're kind enough to run live feed on the jumbotron.) Since the infamous track marks the halfway point of the race, that means that guy was running twice as fast as I was. I am OK with that. I not only acknowledge, but embrace my limitations. I know full well there isn't a miracle on Earth that would make me run THAT fast.
But I digress...
Here we are, perched on February 1. This year's race is May 8. I have just over three months to snap this body into shape -- even better shape than before, if I want to keep up with Jeff and his fancy 8-minute miles. (I have consistently chugged along at a nice 10-10:30 trot.) I began a more "intense" training last week at the gym, setting the treadmill at 9:30/mile and raising the incline to one percent. Don't think that sound like much? Try it. By about the 10th stride, I was like, "what the...?" and considered going back to no incline at all. I stuck it out, though. I didn't want to go home and have to admit to Jeff that I completely wussed out on it. But let me just say, It. Kicked. My. Ass.
So, now I have decided to publicly check in on the training, with periodic posts on how things are going, and how much I question my sanity for doing this to my body. Again. If I've counted correctly, I've got five half-marathons under my belt. Each and every time, by about mile 8 or 9, I have seriously asked myself why in the world I'm running 13.1 miles. By mile 11/12, I swear that I will never do one again. By the 13th mile, I'm praying that God will get me across the finish line without falling down or throwing up. Yet once I cross that finish line, such a sense of accomplishment washes over me... I walk down the chute, grab my free water and banana and almost forget how much my hips and knees are screaming at me.
It's painful, but worth it.
Hear that, May 8?
Bring. It. On.