It’s hard to admit when you’re wrong. You set out determined to prove all the doubters wrong. You convince yourself that their advice is overstated and you’ll have no problem overcoming the challenges ahead. But occasionally, something will happen and you’ll have spare time sitting on the couch to think about what went wrong. As it turns out, sometimes they’re right.
When I first set out to run marathons, I had the Boston Marathon on my mind. Above all else, I just wanted to qualify for and run Boston. Other than the Olympic Trials for upper echelon runners, Boston is as big as it gets and I am so thankful for my experience there. Now that that’s over, I’ve been struggling to find the next steps. Over the summer, I had finally settled on the idea of running the Chevron Houston Marathon again in 2016. I wanted to return to where I ran my first race in 2014 and get a snapshot of how my body has changed in the 2 years I’ve been training with Rogue Running. As often happens when already ambitious marathon runners get even more ambitious, I committed myself to a grueling summer mileage build with a tough fall of hard workouts and continued high mileage. Unfortunately, I lacked the patience to execute the build carefully and injured myself. When you bite off more than you can chew in running, running bites off more than you can run without.
I’ve finally gotten myself back to the point of running about 50 miles per week. This might sound like a lot, but I know that it’s not where I should be to run at the level I expect for myself. My intention throughout the injury was to take it day by day and to make a decision about Houston in November. After a lot of thought and talking things out with Ashley and several highly intelligent people, I’ve decided to withdraw from the Houston Marathon. Instead, I’ll continue to build my mileage throughout the rest of 2015 and focus on listening to my body and how it’s responding to the increased training load. Since I’ve already dropped the cash on my Houston entry, I’ll transfer to the half marathon and run it as a workout.
Will I sign up for a different marathon in 2016? Many of the people in the Austin community run multiple marathons in a year, and I’m already weird because my 2 total marathons were 15 months apart. I’ve decided that for my own long term development, I won’t be running a marathon in 2016, but rather focusing and training with the Statesman Capitol 10,000 in April circled on my calendar. I ran my 10k PR there in 2014, and I would love to beat that time in the upcoming race. This gives me several months to readjust to running hard again, and I won’t experience the season ending trauma of running a marathon.
In my own quest to achieve personal greatness, I trained myself into the ground. This time around, I’m going to focus on listening more and I hope this injury will be a learning experience for myself and those around me.