10 mile trail run in 1:52:48
Swam 1200 yards
Ten years ago, before I started running marathons, I signed up for a 5K. The day of the race happened to fall on the same day I was moving...moving from one small apartment into another, with help. I remember thinking: 'Wow! I did so much today!!!' I was quite impressed with myself and spent the rest of the afternoon (moving didn't take long because I didn't have much) and evening lying around like a slug.
Flash forward a year to 2002, when I was training for my first marathon. I was getting ready to do 10 miles with the Lopers and was nervous because I had never been that far. Leaving for the run, I overheard two women talking and one of them said very casually to the other, "Oh, we're only doing 10 miles today." Only? Ten miles? I decided that they either must be bragging or trying to intimidate me. How could you use the words 'only' and '10 miles' in the same sentence and mean it? I finished the run, but remember being wiped out afterwards, both mentally and physically.
This morning I set my alarm for 6:30 to run 10 miles with a group through El Moro Canyon. I haven't ran farther than 5 miles since the Chicago Marathon on 10-10-10 and figured it was time to up the mileage. In part because I received a text from Jonathan last week informing me that he had just finished 10 miles and I was a bit envious. Since October, all of my runs have only been 3-5 miles. I've been running, biking and swimming, and very consistent with my new training plan but still, I started today with a lingering doubt because my mileage hasn't been high. I gave myself an out of 'maybe I'll just do 8.'
|At the trail head, about to start.|
|Beautiful, rolling hills with a view of the trail that lies ahead.|
|Ocean views almost the entire way!|
Surprisingly, I felt fantastic, and the 10 miles seemed almost effortless! Some of the uphills were steep, and I walked those, but I felt like I could have gone twice as far. It truly felt like it was 'only 10 miles.' And, unlike 10 years ago when I was a whole lot less active, I wasn't wiped out afterwards! After my run I had a productive day: I did laundry, cleaned, got ready & went shopping, cooked, swam 1,200 yards, watched TV and read. Oh, and blogged! :) And throughout all of this, my usually positive mood was noticeably elevated. A far cry from being wiped out after a 3.1 mile run followed by moving some boxes and a couch.
Today was another reminder to myself that the more I do, the more I can do! Mileage and what is 'far' is all relative. When you remove barriers and limitations that have been put in place by no one other than yourself, you realize what you are truly capable of. And just when I think those barriers are gone I'm reminded that I still have them...evidenced today by my doubt that I would be able to finish what turned out to be an easy run.
When you surround yourself with people who do more than you, you're more likely to push yourself and find new challenges! And no matter what, there's always someone doing more and something else to strive for, whether it's a new PR, a different race or learning something new like swimming!