One More Week [Alternatively: AAAHH!!]

So it’s come to my attention that I’m just over exactly 7 days away from my half marathon.


I’m fine, why do you ask?

But really, I’m kind of freaking out. I came back from vacation and have been hitting it HARD for the past 8 days:

  • 5.4 miles with hills
  • Rest
  • 60 mins. of cross training with strength work and biking
  • 2 miles of speedwork
  • Rest
  • 6.5 miles at race pace
  • 3 miles of speedwork
  • 50 minutes of cross training

Why am I freaking out, you ask? Well, see, a half marathon is 13.1 miles. And the most I’ve done so far is 6.5. That’s just over half of the distance I need to cover in a week.

Sure, I could blame traveling and vacation and that nasty 9-day fever/cough on my lack of real mileage, but let’s face it: I have no one to blame but myself. And since we’re all friends here, I’m gonna keep it real right now and be honest: I am fucking pissed at myself. This is an issue that I have not just with my running, but with life in general.

Here’s how it goes down: I set a goal for myself. A big, lofty goal that I think would be awesome to accomplish, like “be a professional person at work” or “run another half marathon after blowing out my knee in the last one I ran”. Whee for goal setting!


Do! All! The Things!

I get really excited! For about 2-3 weeks, all I focus on is this goal. I wear high heels to work every day. I schedule meetings. I create a training plan and follow it rigorously. It’s all I can talk about. “I’m going to really turn it around this time! I’m going to banish all doubt from my performance as a professional at work/run this half marathon/fill in the blank with lofty goal here!”

Then, something happens. Maybe I get sick. Maybe I have to travel for work, or something family-related pops up. Whatever it is, it always sidetracks me from my “PLAN with a capital P”. I stop wearing the heels. I forget to run because I’m too stressed or busy or whatever. And before I know it, a week or two or even three has gone by, and I’m right back to pre-goal Jess. Only now, that Plan with a capital P is now in shambles and whatever goal I’ve set for myself is STILL looming. And it’s immobilizing. Plus I’ve got the sweet taste of failure in my mouth.


Turns out, failure tastes like chocolate and potato chips and insomnia and Twizzlers all mixed together, did you know that?

So that’s about where I’m at right now. Sure, I haven’t completely FAILED with a capital F. I’ve still got a week. I’m training. I’m not giving up. I’m focusing on finishing this thing with a smile, and if that means I have to walk half of it and finish 3 hours after they close the course to avoid injury, then so be it.

But I’m not as trained as I’d like to be, and I know that I’ve never actually successfully run an entire half marathon yet, due to either the course being shortened or blowing out my knee a mile before the finish. So even though I’m going into this thinking, “Hey, 3rd time’s a charm!”, a tiny, self-hating part of me sees me bonking at mile 9 and just saying f*ck it and paying the cop at the end of the pack of runners $50 to give me a ride to the finish on the back of his motorcycle.
So all I can do is keep training, keep picturing myself crossing that finish line, running, and happy. That’s the best I can hope for I guess. Right?





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