I have two months until the Baltimore Marathon. It will be my 10th marathon. It is also Baltimore’s 10th Anniversary taking place in October of 2010…(I like symmetry)
I have not run a real marathon since Phildelphia in 2008 where we froze our tookis’ off for 4 hours. Who knew sweat could freeze in a marathon? I took the year “off” to train for Ironman and really didn’t spend much time at all getting ready to run. When I started to train for triathlons, I was doing pretty well in the running department. I was seeking a new challenge, a new community, and a chance to connect to cycling. (At the time, that was an important need in my life, as cycling was really important in my relationship. Things are different now) I progressed from sprint to Ironman in three years. It wasn’t until the Ironman training that my running truly suffered.
So here I am, one year post Ironman (give or take two months) and I am at a complete loss for running skill. I watched this weekend as some very dear friends ran Ironman Lake Placid. I spent much of the day feeling complete joy at their individual successes in each of the disciplines. Their strength, their endurance, was something that I can’t imagine I ever had. Perhaps I did at some point, but now, it is completely lost.
I know how to train for a marathon. I have done it a variety of ways; moderate miles, lots o’ miles, barely there miles. I have had times that I’ve been proud of and times that I am embarrassed to post. I have run marathons in 85 degrees (twice) and the aforementioned 25 degrees. In rain, in clouds, in sun. In Eastern Standard, Central Standard, and Pacific Standard Time. Up hills and along flats. I have trained on the track, on the trail, on the treadmill. I know how to calculate race pace, 800 pace, 2 mile repeat pace. I have trained with amazing people; friends for a season and one friend for a lifetime (who moved on me two years ago and it hasn’t been the same since.) But now as I sit here with two months to go, I am at a complete loss. I cannot get my feet under me. I cannot get motivated to join the throng for the long runs. I am not approaching food with the fuel mentality. I think every blog I have written in the last 10 months has had the same tenor.
I hear the words, “get up and run”, “just go try”, “you can do this” from the people around me. I like when I run 30 minutes, even 45, but beyond that, I’m not sure I get the point. But, the entry is paid and the announcement has been made, so I will toe the starting line in October, ready or not. Two months.