Friday, October 11, 2019

Throwing Caution to the Wind

I wish I could go back and recap the last 4 months of life. 'Whirlwind' doesn't even start to describe what my world has been since Rob and I said "I do." Weddings and birthday parties and more weddings and more birthday parties and bachelorette parties galore! The summer of celebrations, I like to call it.

I knew this summer would be hard for Running/Triathlon Megan. I snuck in a few races here and there. I never stopped running. I swam and biked as time allowed. After my failed attempt at a BQ in April, I had hopes of going back to Duluth, MN in June to race Grandma's Marathon. {Or as I call it, Christmas Day for runners in June.} But life got hectic between April and June. I officially tied the knot and I attended 2 other weddings, consecutively after my very own (1 of them happened to be one of our groomsmen, whom Rob also stood up for). None of these events came with early bedtimes or hydrating beverages such as water or a variety of sports beverages. I truly C E L E B R A T E D everything and that will always come with a price. A headache in the morning? Maybe. A little less sleep? Always. A diet you aren't used to? 100%. I always put on my shoes on the next morning. But the quality of my running I was hoping for wasn't always there. So at the end of the day, I decided to forego Grandma's Marathon and put all my eggs into one basket. The Chicago Marathon.

The last time I ran The Chicago Marathon, circa 2011
You can spot me in the pink tank, running with Brian

Which leaves us here.

I got my butt back into gear. I've put the work in. But I continued to "celebrate" my way through the summer. I didn't nail every workout. I didn't have time sit in my boots every time I needed to. I slacked on my stretches when I needed it most. But, as of today, I'm actually feeling pretty good about this whole thing. I'm a firm believer in "You get out of something what you put in." And I know for a fact that my lead in into The Chicago Marathon hasn't been perfect 100% of the time. {Truth bomb, it never will be either.} But I can say with certainty that I didn't have the focus, energy, or time to commit to training that BQ needs this time around.

But here we are.

By no means do I think this will be an awful day. I'll run this marathon in the greatest city in the world and I'll have a smile on my face regardless of how fast or slow I finish. But, the last time I qualified for Boston, I had 19 seconds separate me from a qualification and the starting line in Hopkinton. And that was after laser precision focus all winter long. I was probably the strongest runner I've ever been at that point.

And since that race, the BQ standard has dropped by 5 minutes. {Currently 3:30 to qualify, approximately 3:27-3:25 to RUN Boston} Which means I need to shave off roughly 3-5 minutes if I actually want to RUN Boston 2021. And I have to be honest and real with myself. I'm not an athlete that has plenty of time to spare. I'm playing with seconds here. But stranger things have happened.

8 years ago. All of us still friends.
Every single one of these people attended our wedding (or stood IN it)

The weather is looking pretty damn good. It has me "giddy" if you will. Last week I ran after work and it was hotter and more humid than most of my workouts all summer long. So, I'm hoping I have some hidden fitness that will come show up on race day now that the weather is cooperating. My legs have done this distance 13 times before, so I'm hoping some muscle memory kicks in at some point. I've also been much better and proactive about taking care of myself. I've had 2 massage in the past 3 weeks and I'm currently sitting in my Normatec boots and I have a date with my STIM unit tomorrow night.

Chicago Marathon 2011: Boyfriend
Chicago Marathon 2019: Husband

So, if you find yourself interested in my racing endeavours, you can track me on the Chicago Marathon app on Sunday morning. I'll be in the first wave, coral D, meaning I should take off pretty close to 7:30am. Bib 14721. If you'll be on course, I'm planning on gluing myself to the 3:25 pace group towards the front of the group (because claustrophobia is a REAL THING in this race in tight packs). I'll need every ounce of positive energy, good vibes, extra prayers, and anything else you can send my way. But in all honesty, sometimes life is about throwing all caution to the wind and seeing where it takes you. And this kinda feels just like that.

I'll see ya on the other side. And not in 4 months, sometime next week. I promise.


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