I reach mile 8, then my body begins to shut down. I have to stop. I can’t get myself to jog. All I can at this point is walk. It’s not even at a brisk pace. It’s a pace where pedestrians (who were not in the race) were passing me.
I have completed 3 half marathons in the past 5 months. All with the same result. The last two races gave me a bad taste in my mouth. The 3rd (and final race) was the last straw. Apparently this was supposed to be fun, a great way to be active and get healthy. I didn’t exactly see it that way.
So what exactly happened at the last race?
- Starting line to Mile 3: I start at a decent pace (14-15 min/mile). No problems at all. Excited and ready to go.
- Mile 3 to Mile 6: Heart rate up. Getting a good sweat. I am still maintaining a 14-15 min/mile pace.
- Mile 6 to Mile 8: Muscles aching. Feet swelling up. I need to stop. My pace goes to 18-20 min/mile
- Mile 8 to Finish line: The walk of shame. Everyone is passing me. Pedestrians are walking faster than me. I want to go home. I question why I am doing this. Cheering and supporting annoys me. I avoid the cameras. Over 4 hours later, I walk across the finish line. I take my medal and put it in my pocket. I am shuffling to get to the shuttle to take me to my car.
What do I know? How did I let this happen?
- Being overweight: I ran for 2+ hours with a weight of 240+lbs. Not bad, but I can lighten the load
- Not enough training: I only used my stationary bike 3-4 times a week. This definitely did not train me for the constant impact runner has to offer.
- My shoes: I ran in cross trainers.
- Nutrition: I ate to lose weight, not to prepare myself for a marathon.
- Hydration: Drank lots of water, not enough electrolytes.
- Mindset: I already had a negative attitude coming from the Walt Disney Half Marathon a month prior.
- Strategy: I didn’t have one. Run till I was tired and then try to run again.
So what am I going to do now?
- Rest: I need my body to rest, but most importantly I need my mind and spirit to rest. My body reacts negatively to stress (weight gain and anxiety)
- Reevaluate: When I was signed up for races, I thought this was a sure way to force me to prepare and get in shape. I got in shape to a certain extent, but not enough to get where I needed to be. Also putting a time frame to be a certain fitness level stressed me out, especially when I was not able to prepare on certain weeks due to life. I thought this was going to be fun, but in the end it was an embarrassing and disappointing time. So what can I do for fun? This is what I’ll need to figure out.
If you have any suggestions for me I’m open to hear then. Please leave your comments below.