I'm in week two of marathon training for the Myrtle Beach Marathon and am happy (and relieved) to report that it's going well. Great, even. I don't know why, but after I ran Chicago in '09 and qualified for Boston, I lost my confidence. Even though I had a great run at Boston and set a PR, I went into that marathon with a sense of dread. I knew I'd done the training but mentally I felt off. When I crossed the finish line, my main thought was, "Wow, I got lucky."
That feeling of not quite being ready, of not being as strong as I need to be, has plagued me throughout the summer. Even casual Saturday runs I've approached with a mindset of, "Well, I'll just get through it the best I can." My times were still good, but I was full of doubt.
Maybe I just needed a goal. I really (really, really, really) want to break 3:40 at Myrtle Beach and I'm fired up to do it. I did a tempo run this morning and had the urge to stop around the 5 mile mark. No! 3:39! 3:39! 3:39! I kept going.
The real test of my resolve comes this weekend. I'm in NY for a writers conference and the days are packed. I'm due for a 15-mile long run and the only way I can see to fit it in is to get up at 4 am on Saturday and hop on the hotel treadmill. Fifteen miles is a long way to run on a treadmill. It feels even longer on an unfamiliar treadmill. And longer still at 4 am. But I'm already psyched to do it. I've got a goal. I'll do what needs to be done to reach it.
How about any of you? What fires you up to reach your goals? Or, alternatively, what fills you with self-doubt and how do you move past that?