Well, it's been a bit of a while since I threw anything up here. I entertained some thoughts on motivation & other topics in late-December/early-January but....
Well, I'm here now.
Yesterday was the end of week 11 of the Higdon Novice Supreme training program I've been following. The runs feel great. For better or worse, the last couple weeks have even seen running the scheduled run twice in one tready visit, a throw-down 2 miler on a scheduled rest day (just because taking the day off from running just felt WRONG) and a couple two-a-days when I ran at the firehouse in the morning and felt like running again when I got out of work.
(For anyone reading who is inclined at this very moment to interject a well-intentioned message regarding the evils of over-training and how it could result in injury... I got it. You're absolutely right and I'm working on that. We're moving...we're moving...)
Motivation is a funny thing. I mean, where does energy come from? In my case, I seem to have found it in lots of places. For example, my Dad was pretty sick over the holidays. Lost almost 40 pounds in 3 1/2 weeks sick. It was a trying time, and I found getting my run in every morning to be a great way to relieve the stress I was feeling as everyone in the family seemed to turn to me as the family Paramedic and say "fix it." But after a few visits to the right Docs and removing some meds from the schedule and adding a few different ones, suddenly Dad was feeling better. So the morning I called him on the way to the gym and he finally sounded like my Dad again, my energy was over the top. I ran my scheduled run while waiting for my Great & Motivational Training Partner to arrive from her spinning class, and when she got there, I ran it again. My energy bucket literally seemed to be overflowing and running all over the floor.
Or maybe it's the Friday morning a couple weeks ago when, after getting home from working nights, I suddenly found sitting on my couch enjoying my rest day to be a completely unacceptable way to spend my morning. I had to run. Just a two-miler to take the edge off, but it was thoroughly non-negotiable. So the Rush tempo run and a few sets of core exercises were just the thing. I still don't quite understand the why but I was glad that I did it. The two-a-days... well, my Great & Motivational Training Partner was in deepest Southern California for the week and without her guiding wisdom and her command of the word "STOP", a case could be made that the disease that is running had gripped me and I lacked the power to resist.
The positive energy is amazing. My Nike+ says I've now logged over 156 miles since beginning this endeavor. I watched anxiously (and with a little jealousy) for my brother-in-law's results last month as he ran the Disney Half-Marathon, wishing I was there to run it with him. What not to long ago was the daunting idea of a 5K has become "it's only a 5K." I was nervous before my first 10K distance a couple weeks ago but finished it feeling strong and believing that all this training really might be working. And there I was at 2 AM on February 1st, registering for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, the whole reason I started down this road in the first place. They have my entry fee, so alea iacte est (that's Latin for "You've really done it this time, Dumbass! You've gone and committed to running a marathon!)
Oh yeah... yesterday my Great & Motivational Training Partner, for the 1st time, put me in the charge of our run (a 5K) on a cold (29F), sunny, gloriously beautiful morning through a local cemetery, over hills, through snow & ice, past monuments, mausoleums & memorials (We'll see you again next week, Mr. Cutler!).
Coming soon to a St Patrick's Day weekend near you is my first 5-mile race. I'll try to see y'all before then.
I LOVE this running thing. Really glad I found it.