T-Minus One Month to Liftoff

Just over 4 weeks to Chicago.

In a little over a month, I'll be covering the streets of one of my fave cities -  one I have not seen in great detail as an adult. I'm looking forward to finding my race day outfit and setting up post-race plans with area friends.

(Peyton, my honoree, likes pink and blue.  If you know me, you know pink is NOT my thing. I begrudgingly own a few items because I otherwise loved the fit, shape, etc. and they came in no other color.  But I love this kid and this is HER race, so I would wear vomit green if that's what she liked.)
Decked out in our gold accouterments
I'm also in the home stretch for fundraising. I had a great time this week at the Gold Gala.  Between local and virtual attendance, we raised another $300 for A Kids' Brain Tumor Cure, which means I also am only $300 from my goal with about 4 weeks left.

Funk Engine Kitty is like....
really? this funk? again?
And, even with all this good stuff going on, I've been having a rough couple weeks physically, which has put me back in a baby funk. I have a persistent infection and am not feeling well on top of fundraising, event planning for me and the club, work, etc, etc, It has been hard for me to have a good, solid long run or a good, mid-distance speed/tempo run lately, partly because of all this.

I was talking about this with a fellow runner and massage therapist earlier this week; for one of my recent marathons (can't remember if it was Huntsville or maybe even Seattle), I had an entire training season without that breakthrough run.

It can be really confidence-shaking - to an inexperienced marathoner because you haven't developed that "I can do this" sense of efficacy, and to an experienced one because you know what to expect and you either want to PR really bad or just feel good.  And right now my mental preparation is sorely lacking that run.

Anyone who's ever done 26.2 miles a few times knows that the golden moment of your training plan is that run.

I'm talking about the one that, upon its conclusion, makes you think to yourself
I got this
Bring it on, BITCHES
I can hand this race its ass
I'm gonna own that 26.2 miles IN THE FACE

I had a few of these toward the beginning (my two double long runs), but for the past month or so, what I have had is:
My bladder hurts
I have to stop to pee AGAIN?
Can you come pick me up at mile 8?
Fuck this, I'm getting off this GD treadmill

I bagged my recent 20 mile bunched run (10 miles one night, 10 in the morning became 3 in the evening and 3 in the morning), and just couldn't get farther than about 8 miles for this week's 15-miler.  Baby fevers, aches, and just a fatigue that makes it hard to lift my feet.

I even took a weekend really easy and did nothing but walk St. Augustine
and paddleboard with the club to give myself a break
It has been hard not to get down on myself about not making many of my long runs or not feeling great on some of the runs I've completed.  I try to tell myself daily that I am doing a great job of getting in as much as I can and that I should feel proud for all I do when I am not feeling great, etc.

But sometimes when it is only your internal dialogue it feels like bullshit you hear that from someone else it really is uplifting.

Yesterday someone in my life who is not effusively complimentary gave me the first real compliment I've ever gotten from him related to this.... he told me he was impressed with all I manage to do with what I have (physically) going on.  It was just one of those days where I felt like absolutely nothing I did was enough.  But the pat on the back gave me the guts I needed to keep going on a night where I felt like crap.

My parting sentiment today is be encouraging.  I know we all have people we dislike, have falling-outs with, or who just straight up do us wrong.  Put all those people aside and take some time to just encourage someone in your life who could use it.  I promise, it will make you forget all the assholes in the world when you see just how much it means to them.  You can tell yourself a million times that you're doing your best, but sometimes a kind word from another really helps you feel like you are.

And with that, I'm off to try to rest up for the week.

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