Go Hard or Go Home: The OUC Half Marathon 2011 Race Report . . . Oh The Places You'll Go Revisited

The Team Minus 1


Today is your day.
You're off to Great Places!
You're off and away!

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.

You're on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who'll decide where to go

-Dr. Suess, c. 1990

You can't tell it by looking at me in this picture, but I felt completely unprepared for OUC this year. I love the race, and it was my 5th running of this half marathon, and I thought it would be fun to race with friends, but I felt like I was just tired and ready for the off-season to start already. 

I have a lot of personal stuff going on that it is difficult to discuss (I have learned the troubles of both being too honest and disguising details to be more politicially correct or guarded).  In addition to that, students on one of my campuses are starting class tomorrow while students on the other 2 are ending them.  This is usually the point of a term where I transition from grading assignments to my own research and professional development.

 So, I wasn't really ready.

But, I strapped on my shoes and employed a 3-part strategy:
  1. First third in zone 1 or low 2
  2. Second third in zone 2 or low 3
  3. Final third: GO HARD OR GO HOME
  4. ALSO: whatever you do, don't puke.  (Ok, so that's FOUR steps.  Sue me.)

Me and new running buddy Mary
This sounds crazy, but remember I'm the girl that never trained to push myself.  It's used to be too tough to do that with all my physical challenegs.  So I've really learned how to do that this last year. Whenever I felt tired, I reminded myself: you haven't puked or come remotely close, so obviously you're not pushing too hard.

I went hard.  And then I went to work (not home) . . . with a 3-minute PR.  Best time for the half marathon yet.

My partner in crime, Sharon
And now, ladies and gents, I FINALLY close the IronMAJ, the International Month of Fabulousness, AND the 2011 Race Season.

Goals for Next Year:
  1. Run a mid-20-minute 5k
  2. Run a low-2-hour half marathon
  3. Do a crit
  4. Finish a 70.3
  5. Do either NYC or MCM in fall
  6. Maybe another century? We'll see.
I am signed up for the 2012 Tour De Cure 50 or 75 mile ride on March 28, for which I am also raising funds for the American Diabetes Association. But for now, I get to relax a bit.

I super-<3 BeginnerTriathlete and my coaching team.  I have mentioned before that I can't believe how lucky I was to find coaches so amazing that actually work for my budget.  Today Julia really made me realize how important it is to stay positive about small things in all aspects of my life every single day.  So, in the next coming days, you're probably going to see more from me about keeping it together than training. 

You may remember me saying this in another incarnation .  .

Being satisifed in life is about more than just finding what you like and doing it. It's remembering that every single step you take is a step forward, and that every step forward, no matter how miniscule, moves you toward known and unknown goals. The second you realize that every step is positive forward motion, the less your tasks feel like to-dos and the more they feel like want-to-dos. And, if no matter how hard you try, they still feel like TO-DO's, then maybe you need to revise your goals.

Thanks, Julia, for the reminder.

This is the beginning of a lifelong journey. This is the rebirth of a future stronger, and brighter, and more promising, than anything I have ever had or imagined having.

There will be still be challenges;I will still be alone at times. I'll still fail; I'll still falter. I'll still face dark times, and anger, and tears, and sadness. But I will face it all knowing how very far I've come.

And oh, the places I'll go.

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