44 days until I toe the line at my 4th marathon. I feel so very unprepared.
While running a slow 6-miler this morning, I couldn’t help but think in my minuscule, little, walnut sized brain, “Could I do this 4.5 more times today to run a full marathon?”
Maybe. Maybe not.
Of course, why should I worry? There is absolutely nothing I can do about it…today.
It is today, after all. August 27, 2015. I still have 44 days until October 11. That’s a lot of time. Or, it could be a small amount of time. But that would be thinking like a pessimist.
I may as well look at my glass as being half full because there is absolutely nothing I can do about it…today.
Why worry about stuff that hasn’t happened yet?
So much can happen in 44 days. It isn’t worth the effort worrying about 44 days. The best I can do is live in the moment because that is pretty much all I’m guaranteed at this point. I ran today and it was a good run. I have no complaints. I have no worries.
Next on the agenda today are a few blog posts and a few e-mails. Then, I get to run a few errands with my daughters. Then, there is dinner and a little family time. And then we get to do it all over again.
Will I be able to run tomorrow?
Will I be able to run my half marathon on Saturday?
Will I be able to do my two long runs next month?
Will I be able to run Chicago?
Should I be worried about stuff I have no control over? Should I worry over worries that I create in my mind? Should I worry about something that may not even come to pass?
This morning in Yoga class, our Yogi, Marcia, shared this snipet with us. It was so timely. She read it to us twice. Once at the start of class, and then at the end. When she read it at the end, I actually swelled with tears. A hormonal wreck? Oh, yeah. I’m that. But perhaps it was the words…the meaning of the words…that actually got to me.
The Peace of Wild Things
I rest in the grace of the world.
I am free.
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I think my readers who live in Kansas don’t quite have the same dreamy response about their home state that I just gave. Well, I suppose that is an unfair statement to make. I’m sure there are many who love the state they are in. People live in different places for many different reasons. For some, it may not be by choice, but eventually we learn to accept wherever we live as home.
I do love Minnesota. Don’t get me wrong. Generally the weather is much more pleasing here than it is in Kansas. Besides, after a while, the dreaded Kansas cross winds can affect you much like Chinese water torture. My husband, who spent the first 12 years of his life in the Sunflower State, insists it was the Kansas winds that made him as crazy as he says he is.
What I love most about running in Kansas are the country roads. Particularly where my in-laws reside. There are miles and miles of them. They aren’t paved, either. They are mainly dirt and gravel. And they are especially pleasing the day following a significant rainfall. It makes them soft and pliable, simply decadent for a runner. The roads themselves are mapped out in perfect squares. Every mile you’ll find a cross road. Run a mile, make a right. Run another mile and hit a cross road. Make a right, run another mile, hit a crossroad. Make a right…you get the idea. It is so easy to rack up miles. There is nary a vehicle on any of the roads. You can run smack dab in the middle of the road (or on the right side) without worry, because you can certainly see and/or hear anything coming from at least a half mile away, if not more.
You’ve got to wake up early, though, if it is the middle of the scorcher season. And Kansas can scorch you in summer. But typically that crazy Kansas wind can help with the sweltering heat. In fact, the mornings can be rather pleasant pre sun and post rain. Be sure to pack some hydration because you won’t run into any convenience stores along the way. Just livestock, a flock or two of wild turkeys, a few deer, and hay bales. Lots and lots of hay bales.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again after this trip. If I had to train for another marathon, I’d want to do it in Kansas. With the combination of the perfect roads, the changeable weather, the miles of available space, the flats, the hills, and the lack of vehicular companionship, it would be an almost perfect training location. Sure, I’d have to move in with my brother-in-law and his wife, but I don’t think they’d mind. I don’t take up too much space, I love to cook, I’m rather tidy, and I certainly don’t eat a heck of a lot. I’d miss my Costco, the Yoga studio, and perhaps my husband and children, but I’d adjust.
The Chicago marathon is right around the corner, but Boston is looming. A few weeks in Kansas come March might be just what I need to get in those long runs 3-5 weeks prior to the race. The weather would certainly be more appealing than it is in Minnesota that time of the year. And the family could meet up with my at Spring Break. Hmmmmmm (wheels churning).
It’s a magical area of the country. Time stands still in central Kansas. The small towns are frequent and very much unchanged after a hundred years or more (you might even still find a movie rental establishment), and the people in them move slow and methodical and fumble with modern credit card machines. You have to drive, on average, 30 miles before you find the modern convenience of a Walmart or a Starbucks. But again, it’s a fair trade off, considering the near perfect running conditions on the gravel roads. Just imagine settling into the most grievous, strenuous, and anxiety ridden weeks of your marathon training schedule in a place where time stands just about still, life slows down to a crawl, and there is no pavement for as far as the eye can see.
Yep, that’s Kansas. Where you can run for miles and never see another soul.
Dorothy says “There’s no place like home.” Well, there’s no place like Kansas. There is no better place to run…
at least while you’re there.
Where is your favorite place to run? Is it in your home state?
It’s coming back. It’s all coming back. I can finally say that. It has been a long road, somehow longer than coming back from last year’s injury. It seems my cardio has suffered two fold this time around. And, the unexplained weight gain has wreaked havoc on my gait. I think I finally do have an explanation for it, but it doesn’t change the fact that I’m carrying at least 5-8 pounds more than I was at this time last year. That sucks. And it sucks for my pace.
Tell me if this is just a mom thing. I think it is, although I’m not quite sure. Why is it, that whenever I pause to do something for myself, I feel enormous amounts of selfishness and guilt? I feel guilty if I sit down at the kitchen table to work on a jigsaw puzzle that has been collecting dust. Or when I look at my toenails thinking I could really use a pedicure. Or when I just don’t feel like preparing a fresh meal from scratch, so I gather all the leftovers in the refrigerator that night for dinner instead. It makes me feel like a slacker, or a spoiled housewife if I take a shortcut or take some me time.