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15 seconds.

May 22, 2010

As those of you who follow me on twitter know, I ran a half marathon last weekend.  What you may not know is that I was not happy with my time.

You see, I am very competitive. Mostly with myself.

I’ve been hovering around the 2hr mark for my time on a half marathon for the last year, and I was SURE that last week was my time to actually break that mark.  I was wrong I came in at 2:00:15.

FIFTEEN SECONDS??? are you kidding me??? Man, was I pissed. Seriously. I spent the next few days going over the race in my head trying to figure out where I could have picked up speed, where I could have pushed a little hard, where I could have done better.  I was beating myself up over 15 seconds.

Then it hit me.

3 years ago I couldn’t run.  Heck, I could barely walk any distance of significance.  2 years ago, I spent 2 days in bed vomiting for dehydration and exertion after a 10K. And 6 days ago, I ran a half marathon comfortably. Yes, it was my 4th half marathon, but it is still hard work. Yes I struggled at times, but I was comfortable out there. I wasn’t in pain, I wasn’t gasping for air, I wasn’t taking more walking breaks than planned. I was comfortable. I even ended up with one of my best mid-race pictures I’ve ever seen. (that’s me in purple)

The thing is, when I look back at the number of runs I had to miss because of work in the month leading up to the race, I realize that I didn’t train hard enough to deserve a sub 2hr finish.  That is the simple fact of the matter. I didn’t train hard enough.

I also realized something else.  I realized I am a fit person. I realized that I ran a 2hr half marathon comfortably without proper training leading up to it.  That in itself is an accomplishment. I have so much to show for myself with allt his running I’ve done. My body feels (and looks) amazing. I have so much energy now. I can do things I never could before. And I have a really cool collection of souveniers and medals from the races I’ve run.

I may not have broken the 2hr mark this time. But there are more half marathons this year, and there is more time to train.  So I’m going to set my sights on 10-10-10 and the Half Marathon at the Royal Victoria Marathon and I am going to break that 2hr mark convincingly.

But in the mean time…I’ve realized that it is a waste of energy to be mad about 15 seconds, when I could be celebrating the fact that I have another half marathon under my belt and they are all getting easier!

I guess that’s the whole point here. It gets easier No matter what  your physical activity of choice, the more you do it, the more you practice and train, the easier it is going to get. You just have to get out there and do it.  Whatever it is, just do it. It’s worth it.

Remember, “The miracle is not that I finished, the miracle is that I had the courage to start”.

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