Friday, December 31, 2010

No. 5 - Almost Breaking 2 Hours

I am not much of a runner.  I'm not very fast, it makes my shins sting, and I just really don't like it very much most of the time.  Back in the day I did it because it was kind of a big part of soccer and a necessary part of training, but I don't know that I voluntarily would have ever strapped on a $120+ pair of shoes and hit the pavement.  Especially not in the months of December, January, February, June, July or August.

But, over the years, I've been "blessed" to live with and be friends with people who are passionate about running.  For example: Leslie and Meggie.  In 2008, when I was living with my BFF Maggie in Cincinnati, she managed to run half of the Flying Pig Marathon without even really training and she then convinced me that she and I could and should run the Mini Marathon in Indianapolis in 2009. The Mini is a famous half-marathon that takes a lap around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway that everyone should try once.  So, we signed up for a coveted bib, put ourselves in a slow-ass corral, and started training.  We ran (and talked) the whole race (and took approximately 11 bathroom breaks) together in a moderate but respectable (especially given the bathroom breaks) 2 and a half hours.  

Me and my work friend, Chris, post-mini 2010
The feelings of pride and joy I felt afterwards made me do something stupid - I immediately signed up for not one but two more half marathons - the Monumental in Indianapolis in November and the Mini again in May of 2010.  I ran the Monumental alone, but had fans along the way to keep me going and managed to cut my time (and bathroom breaks) down considerably.  I finished in about 2:15 with only one break.  I started training almost right away for the Mini and though my training was nowhere near as intense as it could have been, I felt really good going into the race.  I completely eliminated bathroom breaks (yay for little blue pills) and finished so close to under 2 hours (which is really respectable) that it hurt.  I kicked myself for weeks thinking that "if only I'd done a few more runs... if only...".  But, now I'm over that and am just proud that I did it at all.  For someone who really doesn't enjoy running, having three half marathons under my belt feels like an accomplishment in and of itself. 

Though I won't be running the Mini this spring (hopefully I'll be holding Sprout and watching Maggie get married), I have nothing but good intentions and high hopes for a sub-2:00 half marathon in the future.  And, in the meantime, cheers to an Indiana winter free of running-induced frostbite.


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