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This Time Feels Right
As soon as I crossed the finish line at the Hamptons Marathon, I was ready to sign up for my second attempt at 26.2.
I set my sights on the Eugene Marathon on April 29, but I didn’t fully commit to the race until well into 2012.
I wanted to run Eugene. I really did. I wanted to experience a glorious track finish, and I wanted to achieve my sub-4 hour time goal.
But then, as you may recall, spring got a little crazy. I got a little sick. My body got a little deteriorated.
I took on too much, and I accepted that my lofty goals would have to be put on hold. While my friends ran the heck out of the race and had “the best day of their lives” that day in April, I was in my apartment, sick and injured. And yes, completely cranky, bitchy and super fun to be around.
Looking back, I was never fully invested in Eugene. Yeah, I was excited, yeah running is cool. But I don’t remember ever having that “This is so right” feeling. So when I bailed on the marathon, which was sad, I still knew it was the right thing to do.
Now, a few months later, I’ve found that feeling.
I’m running the New York City Marathon on November 4, and I can say wholeheartedly and with conviction that this feels so right.
I haven’t started training yet — the race is something like 19 weeks away — but I’m getting my mind and body prepared, and I think we’re all on board this time.
I’m significantly less excitingly busy, I’m learning to better manage my stress, and I’m focusing on what’s important rather than dwelling on the trivial things in life (um, endless To-Do Lists and unpacked moving boxes — sorry Brian, those boxes are trivial, I’ve decided).
I’m back in New York today after one of the most wonderful weekends I’ve had in a while.
I spent the weekend in New Hampshire with my family, eating a ton of good-but-not-at-all-healthy food, bike riding, swimming and, best of all, forcing my nephew Tyler to be my best friend.
I tend to get caught up in the whirlwind craziness of New York City all the time. There’s work, there are training plans, there are fun commitments and not fun commitments, and there’s public transportation. There’s always so much going on, and it took me a long time to realize just how crucial it is to take a big step back — or a jazz square, if that’s more your style — and re-prioritize.
Part of the reason I’m so excited to begin marathon training this time around is because I feel like I’m better in tune with my body and what it needs to stay healthy.
The biggest factor for me in staying healthy is being un-stressed. When I’m anxious or worked up, I get Crohnsy, and blah blah blah. You know how this goes. We all do.
This weekend was so completely stress-free. Being in New Hampshire will do that to you.
I didn’t have cell phone service for three days, I was totally unplugged, and the only things that mattered were cuddle time with Tyler and making sure my ice cream bowl was constantly full.
Brian and I drove up to New Hampshire on Friday, and as soon as we pulled into my mom and dad’s driveway, everything was right in the world. I wore sweatpants. I was adequately fed. I drank good wine. I didn’t quite catch up on sleep, but who needs that, anyway? We’re young.
We saw a bear in the backyard, and as always, we checked out the latest results from my dad’s hidden backyard night vision motion sensor camera gadget.
The backyard camera captures all movement and wildlife, so also, this:
Now, I’ve talked about the food I ate.
I’ve talked about being a non-stressed version of myself.
What’s missing in this post here at Ali On The Run?
Ali On The…Run?
I haven’t talked about actually running in a while, now have I?
That’s because I haven’t been doing it.
OMG WHO AM I? OMG WHAT HAPPENED TO TWO-A-DAY RUNNING-OBSESSED ALI?
She just ended up taking a little running break over the past few days.
She’s been busy.
Really, though, let’s talk about it, because this is important. I think.
I didn’t plan to take a running break. It just kind of happened.
I’ve been running decently high mileage throughout the past few weeks, and the running has been going quite well. After being out for a bit, I finally felt like I was getting back into my groove and starting to pick up some speed.
I wanted to build base mileage before NYCM training started — and remember, so far I’ve just been doing this on my own. No one has been coaching me. I’ve just been messing around, enjoying running and doing whatever feels good. So don’t necessarily go out and do as I say or as I do.
I ran early in the week last week, and my body was starting to feel fatigued. Specifically, my left foot was feeling a little achy. As soon as I noticed tenderness — it wasn’t really pain, just a little tightness in my inner arch — I stopped running and hopped on my bike.
Well, “my” bike that I’m borrowing. I swear I’m buying one soon.
I rode on Thursday.
I rode on Friday.
And then, I rode on Saturday and Sunday, too.
I love running, and it’ll always be my first-choice activity, but I haven’t missed it during these past few days.
So I took that as a sign that I needed this mini break. It’s been almost a week since my last run, and I’m excited to get back into my Brooks. I’m pretty sure my lower body is excited for that, too. Bike shorts may be padded, but after riding 151 miles last week, my crotch is ready to run again.
I’m sorry I can’t think of a more ladylike or nice-sounding word, so “crotch” will suffice.
I love riding. And I’m excited about mixing it into my marathon training this time around. It gets my heart rate way up but in a way that’s far kinder to my joints. I like that. I think it’s good for me. But then again, what do I know?
I think we’re all caught up now, right?
I took almost a week off running. It may end up being a full week depending on when I decide to lace back up again.
I went to New Hampshire for the weekend. I loved every single second I spent away from NYC.
Tyler is the best kid ever and he loves to cuddle.
He is unsure about whether or not he likes to swim.
I am ready to train for a marathon. I have a good feeling about the New York City Marathon. I’m excited to get started with training. I can’t wait for Saturday morning 20-milers.
I am not excited about Gu.
But everything else: It’s go time.
Not Gu time.
I tried to make a joke.