Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Year of Racing Terribly (or nearly not at all)

I write this having been up for 20+ hours tending to my son in a household ravaged by some vicious little stomach bug. I haven't had time to think about it yet, but I believe I may be fighting the thing as well. And I have a race in a few days.

I feel desperately unprepared for this one. I have miles in my legs but not enough. I have hills that have worn me out and made me stronger, but I question if I've gone high enough. Have I gone hard enough? I'm pretty sure that I have not.

Running provides a much needed outlet for me, a time and place where I can turn off the noise of the world and breath in mental silence. Not every run is a good one physically, but they have all been useful (even the really bad ones) psychologically, spiritually.

But it can sometimes lose it's impact when it is clouded by the guilt around my sometimes not being able to reach my own expectations... set around race specific training and usually the races themselves. This alone can push me to depression when running is supposed to be the thing that guards me from it.

I start to wonder and obsess on how others do it. How do they commute, work, commit time and energy to their families and still find time to be the best they can possibly be athletically. It can get lonely not being able to figure this out.

I'm blessed to have the support of one of the best shoe companies in the market. And I feel guilty for having the opportunity to represent them. Being a part of the Altra Ambassadors allows me to be inspired by a fantastic team of enthusiastic explorers, but sometimes their endeavors and successes make me feel less than.

I haven't trained as much as I would like. I won't make excuses about that. I have barely raced, but hope to pick that up as we go into the summer. I have races on the calendar including a late entry into the NYC Marathon.

I want to turn the year around. I think I may need many more long, quiet runs to figure out how.