...of my pitiful four month rut filled with copious amounts of running loathage and complete demotivational suckage. Yeah, that about sums it up.
Since completing my first marathon on May 2nd, I've been very down on running. I'm not sure why or how it started. I was thrilled to have run my first marathon, and I guess equally thrilled to not have to run 4-5 days a week for hours on end. I finally had a life again, even if it wasn't very eventful, and within record time it seemed I had kicked that running habit and developed a new one as a laziness extraordinaire. But when it came time to start training for Chicago in July, I got right back into the swing of things...I wish.
I didn't completely quit running, as I had a "goal" this year to run a race every month, but those races seemed to make up the majority of the running I did, and needless to say, they didn't go over super well.
Here are some very brief recaps of the races I completed this summer (yep, I was that unexcited about running I couldn't even find the motivation to blog about the races at the time).
Peters Canyon Summer Trail Series
This is a really chill, fun, series of 5-mile trail races that happen on a Thursday evening once a month over the summer. This was also my very first trail run last summer after moving out to California and I was excited to run the course again.
I managed to beat my time from last year at all three races, and had a blast despite being rather out of shape!
San Francisco 1st Half Marathon
I decided to sign up for this race somewhat last minute to complete 2/3 of the California Dreamin' Series. I was not ready for this race AT ALL as I had not run AT ALL in at least a week. However, this ended up being a fantastic weekend since I finally got to meet my twitter buds Ron and Joe and tour some of SF on my 2nd visit to the city.
I met up with Ron first thing after getting off the BART to get my race bag he was kind enough to pick up for me, and ended up running with him for the first 6 miles of the race the next morning until my bum calf (and lack of running) forced me to resign from my "pacing" duties. Ron kicks ass and I was honored to have been able to run with him, even if it was only 6 miles :-)
Running over the Golden Gate Bridge was pretty spectacular, and it was a great course in general...but the hills...you'd have to be crazy to run the full marathon. I struggled a bit from about mile 11 on, and finished around 2:16 - not a PR, but not my worst half either - I'll take it!
After the race, I got a chance to have some drinks with Joe at his Runners World get together and had a bitchin time hanging out, relaxing, and talking until I had to leave to catch my flight.
This race was absolutely BRUTAL as I was not trained or ready one bit. It took me only 50 minutes less to complete this 15ish mile run than it did to complete my first marathon...yikes! I don't have a whole lot to say about this race other than it was a really hot, really scenic, really exhausting 15 mile walk in the Santa Monica mountains on a lovely Saturday morning! I won the battle a 65 yr old man decided to start with me around mile 4, and I only got lapped by about 10 of the people running the 50k - so I'll call that a win!
Special thanks to the race photographers for displaying "warning" signs that I better "look cool" and like I'm "having fun" because they would be taking our pictures up ahead. This is the only reason I look so happy and awesome :-).
After the race I got to hang out with Josh, Graham and a few other friends and talk about my death march while we watched some more of the fast 50k racers finish close behind me.
You'd think with a decent amount of races this summer that my training for my next big race, the Chicago Marathon, has been going well. Noooope. Once I got out of the habit of running practically everyday, I could never get it back. No matter how much I fought with myself, I'd always come up with some excuse not to run, and usually the excuse wasn't good. I just didn't want to run; it no longer seemed fun - just a lot of time and energy I didn't want to spend running all over the place, and a lot of aches and pains I didn't want to feel. The excitement of completing my first marathon was gone and I couldn't figure out why I'd want to do it all over again so soon. The motivation and desire wasn't there, I couldn't find it, and as a result I've probably logged about half as many miles as I did training for my first marathon.
Chicago is just over a month away and I'm finally ready to bust out of this sucktastic running funk.
I watched "Spirit of the Marathon" the other night and something finally clicked back on, and I'm finally excited and passionate about running again. Due to the unfortunate training leading up to this point, Chicago is going to be painful for me, no doubt, but I can't wait for the big city, the enthusiastic crowds, and hopefully all the tweeps I get to meet and/or see again; it's going to be an absolute blast.
Yesterday I went for my first run in about a week and it was fan-fucking-tastic. I haven't felt that great on a run since I can remember :-)
Stay away injuries, and bring it on...cuz I'm back!