Saturday, November 5, 2011

Uncontrollable, pretty ridiculous emotions

Since late July, I’ve been training for a half marathon.  At first, I was training for the Women's Half Marathon in St. Petersburg, Florida.  Later in the summer, it became apparent that travelling to Florida for that race was going to be entirely too expensive, etc.  I ended up signing up for the Outer Banks Half Marathon in August and have been in training mode since.  
In the beginning, the half marathon seemed so far away.  At that time, I was volunteering with the NCRC Women's Beginner Running Program and I was focusing a lot of my energy on encouraging some awesome new runners.  I worked to keep my mileage moving up and making sure I was having quality runs, more than the distance.  
After the women's program ended on September 24, Debbie and I started to focus on the longer runs.  Yes, I convinced two fellow NCRC runners to join me for OBX.  The training has been great, but today it hit me.  
It is November.  The half marathon is on November 13.  What does that mean?  It is half marathon week.  It is very surreal at this point.  I am no longer "training for my second half marathon".  I am running my second half marathon in 7 days.  Do you know how fast, yet so slow, this week is going to pass? c
Do I look a little excited to have finished my first half?
Couldn't have done it without these girls!!

So, obviously, my nerves are starting to get the best of me.  I thought I was doing pretty well, but today it hit me - like a ton of bricks.  I was wandering around the grocery store this afternoon and couldn't stop thinking about whether or not this food or that food would be good for me to eat this week, etc.  
Am I crazy?  I think not.  I fully believe that all runners deal with these crazy emotions before a race.  So, what else am I feeling?  Everything... Totally ridiculous, totally silly, totally gloom-and-doom, but all those emotions make up how I feel - and will help me succeed.    
I am nervous as all get-out.  Yah, think?  Totally obvious, right?  I am nervous about going out of town for my half marathon.  I am nervous about staying in a hotel.  I am nervous that I will forget something in Raleigh (Yes, there are stores where I am going.  That part is totally irrational.)  I am nervous that I won't be able to stick with Debbie for the entire 13.1 miles.  I am nervous that something will keep me from finishing.  I am just a ball of nerves.  
I’m feeling anxiousSunday is so close, yet so far.  I would love more time to train, but I want to get the dang race over with at the same time.  It'll be nice to just check it off my list!  
I’m feeling pretty distracted. How am I gonna work this week?  I have no clue.  Honestly, all I want to do is read blogs about other people's half marathon experiences.  All I want to do is talk about the half because I need every single encouraging word I can get.  Heck, I may even resort to telling the folks hanging out in front of the Greyhound bus terminal near work about my running because I am sure my coworkers are tired of hearing about it!
I am feeling prepared.  I have worked hard.  I need to trust my training.  I have worked hard.  I have put in a lot of miles during my training runs.  Those training runs have been good and bad, but they have been training runs that meant something.  I know I have another half marathon (and many more) in me - I can do this.
I’m feeling excitedOf course I am excited!  I started running in July 2010.  I ran my first half in May 2011 and I am getting ready to do another one next Sunday.  I also have signed up for another half in February 2012.  Something about the challenge of 13.1 miles just brings out the excitement deep in me.  
I have to remember that not everyone can do what I am getting ready to do.  Yes, there are ridiculous numbers of people that have done ultras, marathons, and way more half marathons than me.  But, that doesn't matter - no matter what others do, it isn't an every-day, run of the mill activity.  
I am feeling proud.  I am proud of my transformation since May 2010.  I have done things I would have never imagined in my wildest dreams - and I love it.  I am proud of all the work and dedication that I have put into transformation.  I feel like a completely different person. 
I am sure that the next 7 days will be a roller coaster of emotions.  I probably need to go ahead and apologize ahead of time to the hubs.  The poor guy puts up with all my crazies and exemplifies what a patient, kind, sweet, understanding husband should be.  I don't know where I would be without his constant support.  
Wow, I feel better.  Guess I just needed to write a ridiculously long blog post about being freaked out and actually talk through the emotions.
Tomorrow, I will be volunteering as a course monitor for the City of Oaks Marathon and Rex Half Marathon.  I volunteered last year and watching the various people running is what "sealed the deal" about my running a half.  Can't wait to cheer on some awesome runners tomorrow!

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