While I’m really proud that I ran a half-marathon and still have the shiny medal to prove it, THANK GOD THE TRAINING IS OVER! Yes, that is deserving of big, blocky, all-capital letters. My training program took all the fun out of exercise, and exercise is hard enough to do when it is fun.
Some days I would look at my training schedule and think, “Oh, dear Lord. I have to run 45 minutes tonight or else I’m going to collapse in a pile of goo at mile 10 on race day.” That was the dreadful thing, knowing that I had to do these long-ass runs or else I might not be able to complete the race. And I’d already told a bazillion people I was running a half-marathon, so I had to do it. The training took up so much of my time, that I eventually stopped doing anything but running for the last month, completely neglecting weight training or core strengthening exercises. My exercise routing became very unbalanced.
I still like to run, but 20-30 minutes a day is enough for me. Here’s a pic of me about halfway through the half-marathon. Does it look like I’m having fun?
I like that I can play things by ear now. I can come home and think, “Hmmmm, haven’t done weights for a couple days. I guess I’ll do some lifting.” Or if it’s been a really long day and I’ve been good about working out earlier in the week, I can just take the day off. It’s more flexible. There’s more variety in my activities. It’s much better all around. And I don’t have to buy gel-packs anymore.
Which is not to say I’ll never run another half-marathon. I’m mulling the possibility of doing the Indy 500 Mini again next year. But it definitely inserted a bit of chaos into my life. It’s nice settling back into my old routines and knowing I don’t have to run 13.1 miles again any time soon.