Thursday, October 17, 2019

Ventura Marathon Goals

Can you believe it?! It is already time for me to share my goals for my fall marathon. I swear it was just yesterday when I was trying to decide what I wanted to do for the upcoming season (whether I wanted to shoot for a fast time or run longer distances) and now the time has come to see if the work I put in over the last few months can help me tackle goals.

I wish I could say that this training cycle went amazing, but it didn't. In fact, it went pretty terribly (and I don't think that's just the taper crazies talking). If you follow me on social media (because, let's be real, I've been pretty quiet on the blog lately... but that's what happens when life is tough and you are in the middle of home renovations), then you may remember a few months back I was having a pretty terrible Fibromyalgia flare. My back was hating me (there was a point that I told the hubby there was a possibility I might have a tumor on my spine and I needed to get checked for cancer) and I was struggling through my runs (when my body would even allow me to lace up my shoes and get out the door). After that I came down with a pretty nasty sickness (it started as what felt like the flu and then transitioned into what seemed like pneumonia) which meant when I wasn't hacking up a lung and was able to pound the pavement I wasn't able to push nearly as hard as I would have liked. Maybe these sound like excuses, maybe they sound like #FirstWorldProblems, but whatever you think, they were real life (and they knocked me on my booty for at least six weeks of my training cycle).

Although I would love to say I still have my original time goals in mind (Goal A: Sub 3:20 {because wouldn't 3:1X be awesome?!}, Goal B: Sub 3:23:31 {because I would LOVE a new marathon PR}, Goal C: Sub 3:35 {because even though I am not planning to return to Boston, the BQ standard is a great time to shoot for}, Goal D: Sub 4 {because of my 24 marathons, 9 have been sub 4 and I'd love to bump that number up to a double digit}), I think I may need to adjust them. 

And by adjusting them I don't mean pushing the times slower... I mean dropping the times all together. Don't get me wrong, I am a HUGE numbers girl, and in the back of my mind I may never be able to truly let go of the time on the clock, but with that said, I know it isn't the be-all, end-all. My family and friends will still love me no matter what the time says when I cross the finish line (or even if I don't cross the finish line), I am not getting paid based on a finishing time (shoot, I'm not getting paid at all!) and, in the long run, no one really cares or will remember what my race times are (ouch, that hurts a bit, but, I mean, let's be real, I sure as heck won't be putting them on my tombstone, so what's it really matter?!).


With that said, I am still planning to show up, toe the line and see what my body (both physically and mentally) can do.


Goal A: No Limits

If you follow the running world (or people who follow the running world), you probably know two major barriers were broken this past weekend. First, Eliud Kipchoge was the first person to ever run a marathon in under 2 hours (1:59:40). Second, Brigid Kosgei smashed the women’s marathon world record at the Chicago Marathon (setting the new standard for women at 2:14:04). Eliud has said some amazing stuff during the journey to breaking 2, but one thing that many runners/ people have held onto over the last few days is “no human is limited”. My A Goal for Ventura is to go into the race with no predetermined limit on my potential. I'd be lying if I said the outcome of a marathon is 100% mental, of course training has a ton to do with how a race will turn out, but there is also a little (or a lot of) luck needed in a successful race - and a limitless mindset may help. During one of my difficult stretches during training, my coach said “it’s better to be 100% healthy and 80% trained than the other way around”. I am trained for the distance, but the speed is what I’m iffy on. If I were to only take my training into account I may see a “limit” and tell myself that there is no way I can hit some pie-in-the-sky time, but, you know what?! There is no limit to what I can do when I show up and push myself to the edge. Yes, it will probably hurt. Yes, it will be hard. Yes, it will be uncomfortable. Yes, I will probably doubt myself every other step. But crossing the finish line knowing I didn't hold myself back from achieving all I could might just be worth all of that.


Goal B: Give It My All

Maybe this means blowing my original time goals out of the water (wouldn't that be amazing?!), maybe this means running my slowest marathon yet or maybe this means finishing somewhere in between. Whatever my pace, I want to know I pushed myself as hard as I could (with the conditions and the body that showed up on race morning) and gave it my best shot. (Sure, some people may think this is a goal for every race, but, at least for me, it isn't. I have plenty of races that I am running "for fun", to see a new city, to run with friends and enjoy our time together. This is not a race I plan on lollygagging or running all willy-nilly... I plan to put the pedal to the metal and run it as comfortably uncomfortable as I can.)


Goal C: Live To Fight Another Day

This may sound like I am giving up, but, in fact, I think it is just the opposite. You see, I have another goal race in three weeks (I'm running the REVEL Big Bear Half Marathon, hoping to score a major PR and qualify for the 2020 New York City Marathon) and although running a fast time at Ventura would be AMAZING, it is just a personal thing - there's nothing on the line. There IS something riding on the outcome of my next race because the lottery gods have NOT been in my favor thus far for New York (I've entered and been told "no way" three times already) so if I want to run the race I figured I will need to take the power into my own hands and claim a spot. So this goal means that if there is a possibility that pushing it at Ventura may potentially hurt my chances for a sub 1:34 half marathon in a couple weeks, then I may pull the plug on trying to go for broke during my marathon so my efforts can be better used 20 days later.


I'd love to say that removing the time goals has helped to alleviate some of the pressure I've placed on myself for the race, but I'd be lying. I know, I know, "it's just a race", "it's a celebration of the training you put it", "it doesn't determine your worth", "it's about the journey"... but let's be real, with all the blood, sweat and tears I've put into training I'd really prefer to see it pay off. Whatever race day will bring, I know two things for sure... I will be listening to Christmas music on the way home (you may think it's too early, but I normally "allow" myself to start after my birthday and it's a whole month and a half later!) and I will be indulging in a few sweet treats over the next couple days since I gave them up for the last three weeks in hopes to arrive at the start line feeling as healthy as possible. So, well, wish me luck and here goes nothing everything.


What goals are you currently chasing down?

1 comment:

Unknown said...

You go girl. Just do your best and stop trying to finish the story before it actually happens. Just look forward to the finish not worrying about the what ifs!!!
I'll be talk'in to ya.