This weekend I started the first week of a 17 week journey toward running my first marathon at the end of September. Saturday was a 3 mile run, Sunday was a 4 mile run. During my 2 weeks of complete rest from running, I was able to feel excitement once again about returning to running practice and my next training goal. Additionally, with a lot of care put into stretching and strengthening my glutes, my knees and hips were feeling really good and I did not experience any soreness from running. I admit that after an IT band injury in April, and then another flare-up in May, I was nervous about running again. I am really happy that I took some solid rest time to heal, regroup, work on supporting muscle groups, and then return to running with a very gentle start. I am feeling positive about this training plan because the mileage increases incrementally–AND–it’s a tested and approved method by a diverse spectrum of runners.
I also read the Week One chapter of The Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer, which is primarily focused on the psychology of training for a marathon. One of the critical components to successfully training for and running a marathon is internalizing your locus of control (essentially, you perception of cause, effect and response). I am glad that I have quite a few half marathons under my belt at this point, because I can think of concrete examples of how an internal locus of control is the difference between finishing strong and bailing out. You get to a point in a long run when you have nothing but your own core convictions to keep you going, your own narrative… and if your narrative is about how things happen to YOU and are out of YOUR CONTROL, then it becomes very easy to capitulate to convenience. From the internal drive tenacity is born. Only I can achieve my goal of completing a marathon.
On Saturday I got one of my favorite haircuts of all time. It’s short enough to be curly and textured, but still long enough to pull into a ponytail for running (yes!).