So, this weekend was supposed to be my first marathon.
After completing my first half marathon, I was so thrilled and energized, that I immediately looked for a marathon to run. Sure, I was in pain from 13.1 miles, but, I had a killer runner's high that compelled me to hand over my credit card information and sign up for 26.2 miles in Cleveland.
I remember thinking that training for a marathon would be an awesome way to relieve the inevitable stress that was sure to follow from law school. I researched training plans, read tons of articles, and eagerly awaited training for something that had been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember.
I gave myself six months to train. For the first couple months, the training was great. I felt strong, and running on the treadmill was an awesome excuse to blast boy band music.
But, then, not just the stress, but the reality of law school hit. I had never done so much work in my life. And between schoolwork, comedy, working, interning, and being involved in various student organizations (not to mention still trying to prepare food for myself and shower every once and a while), I was averaging about 4-5 hours of sleep per night. That amount of sleep isn't really conducive to remembering your own name, let alone training for serious distance running.
So I did something I never thought I'd do: I decided to give up.
And it felt wonderful!
You see, I'm a bit of a perfectionist (and by "a bit," I mean it's practically my middle name), and I pride myself on not quitting when I set my mind to do something.
But, I had to listen to my body. And when I did, I felt so much better!
By the end of my first year at MSU, I was so stressed, so tired, and so out-of-shape, that I still decided to go to Cleveland, but I switched to the 10K instead. Rather than pushing myself too hard and taking what would probably be a huge risk with my health, I figured, since I still had the hotel room, still paid the entrance fee, I'd still journey down there and just relax. Well, if you could waking up at 4 am to sweat as relaxing.
I was so thankful that my mom and Drew still agreed to go with me. They're incredibly supportive, and they were there to cheer me on and tell me how proud they were of me (even if 26.2 miles became 6.2 miles). They let me drag them to the expo (where I may or may not have forced them to play carnival-esque games), and they made the drive so much fun! They also helped me polish off some pretty amazing falafel that we found near our hotel (well, I should say, we found a restaurant that served falafel; we didn't just pick up some deep-fried chick pea balls from the street and start chowing down).
I still got to take this shiny lil' guy home.
One day I will run a marathon. Today was not that day. And I can honestly say that I'm okay with that. Running long distances feels good, but listening to yourself feels pretty good, too.
Oh yeah, and not having killer blisters and feeling like I'm going to collapse = also pretty amazing!