Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Is Fear Stealing From You?

I had to weight my gloves down to keep them from
blowing off the track...
Today's required marathon training said "4 x 800."  I added "whatever that means" to my calendar when I entered it in.  A little research revealed I was supposed to find a track and run four 800's, alternating a lap of walking to cool down in between.  I'm supposed to run each 800 in 3 minutes and 30 seconds if I want a chance at achieving my marathon time goal.

The idea of trying something new both fascinated and terrified me.  Can I really just walk onto the high school track and start running?  What if the school administration kicks me off?  What if my kids see me out their school window (it borders the track) and get embarrassed?  What if some of the parents see me huffing and puffing and I get embarrassed?  What if I'm really slow?  What if, what if, what if...

Before I took my first sip of coffee I'd talked myself out of trying.  I texted Carissa, "Thinking about subbing out speed work for the bike at the gym.  Do you really just go to a school track and start running?  Don't they kick you off?"  Smart girl that she is, she called me back and gave me a pep talk.  She offered the option of doing the speed work on the treadmill  - an option she KNEW I wouldn't take since I abhor the treadmill - and then told me she really wanted me to at least try it to see how it felt.  

After we talked I decided I would indeed try this thing called speed work.  I want to cross off all those little boxes on the marathon training chart and I don't want to cheat.  Every mile counts, right?

This morning was uncharacteristically cold and sunny.  Vibrant blue skies, bright sunshine, and blow-you-over wind gusts greeted me as I got out of my van.  I had full on butterflies-in-my-stomach as I tried to saunter onto the track and act like I knew what I was doing.  Timidly, I ran a 1/2 mile warm up then set myself up at an imaginary starting line.

Memories of competing on the 7th grade track team washed over me.  I could almost hear my Dad yelling, "Run Tweedle Dee.  They're closing on you!" Just like that, I was reminded all over again of why I love running.  The cold air turning your nose and cheeks red.  The wind blowing you sideways (okay - that part I didn't like but it sounds good).  The mental and physical challenge to beat yourself at your own game.  The adrenaline that surges as you wait for the gun to go off.  The explosive push for the finish that defies explanation but just happens.  I could live off that rush all day.  It was awesome!

This morning I almost let fear of the unknown rob me of a special treat.  What a waste that would have been.  Is fear stealing something special from you?  Why not get out there and try something new today.  You can do it.  Happy adventuring!

1 comment:

  1. Don't you love those special people who know how to talk you into anything? Thanks for sharing this Jodi. It's encouraging and a good reminder that nothing is as bad as we make it out to be. :)