I kept waiting for the freak out. With another long run on the schedule for the week I was just expecting it. For years, a long run on the schedule meant anxiety and freaking out. And after my utter freak out before my 8 miler last week, I was positive the plan to run 9 miles would result in another freak out.
But it never came. In fact, it felt like just another run. I prepped for the distance like a good runner but I was missing the freak out. It was an insanely odd feeling.
All along my hope had been that if I could get past the 8 miler, I would be in the clear. It would be the hurdle that I needed to clear for the straight away to the finish. I was never positive if that would, in fact, be the case. But luckily, it was.
Perhaps the calming factor was knowing that I had someone to run with. Someone who has believed in me all along. Someone who supported my efforts and knew what this meant to me.
Then again, perhaps it was a lot of both. Knowing I had full support for the run and knowing that I had cleared a hurdle that had been there for three years.
I have been putting in the work. With each and every run, I have been fighting the demons that I have carried with me for three years. I spent 8 miles fighting them with each and every step. Choosing to ignore the cries to stop and to continue on. Determined to finish the run.
All of my running problems over the past 3 years are now in my past. I can’t run from my past and instead I faced them head on. I learned a lot over the course of three horrendous running years.
My main goal for this year was to get my running back on track. I wanted to fall in love with running again. It was important for me to work myself up to a solid running base and to keep it. The need to set a training plan and stick with it… to actually be prepared for a legit distance race.
Sure, there have been a few bumps in the road this year. And even though I veered off course, I never let the end goal out of my grasp.
Now I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders.
I ran 10.47 miles in 1:46:11 for a 10:09 pace. This kind of run wasn’t possible a year ago. Hell… I didn’t even realize it was possible two weeks ago. It was 1.47 miles more than my plan called for and I managed it without difficulty.
But the thing that thrilled me the most about this run was the lack of fear. I have come so far over the past year… even more so in the past four months.
And even though I lost faith in myself, there were certain people who never lost faith in me. These people know who they are. I thank them from the bottom of my heart.
Three years of demons are gone. I finally have my running back. I am in love again. The possibilities are there. And that is what I am most excited about… the possibilities.