In 17 days, I’ll be starting the biggest race of my life, the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon. My feet are starting to turn to clay. I’m feeling that sneaky demon I Can’t lurking in the background.
This past weekend we ran the longest run of our training, 21 miles. It was not nearly as difficult as I thought it might be, and if I had not been dealing with low blood sugar, I think I could have gone further. So why the doubt?
I think it’s the fear of the unknown. I don’t know what it’s like to run 26.2 miles. I’ve never done it before. But then, I’d never run 13 miles or 15 miles until I did a half marathon and then the 25K. The difference between those races and this marathon, though, is that I was always within a mile or two of completing the race distance before I went into the race. One or two miles is a lot different than the 5 miles between my longest training run and the marathon distance…and I’m afraid I’m not going to be able to go the distance, that I won’t have the mental fortitude to fight through the fatigue.
It’s got me thinking a lot about faith. Now is the time to trust my training. I’ve taken what my coaches have taught me to heart. I’ve done the work, put in the miles, followed the training plan. Now is the time to just walk in faith that the training has prepared me for what lies ahead.
One thing that I’ve come to appreciate about running is how much the sport, and especially racing, parallels life. A successful race involves training, planning, preparation, and is so much better when it’s not run in isolation. The same could be said of life, right? And just as in life, sometimes runners have to do things that are hard and uncomfortable to reach our goals. And then, there comes that time when you just have to trust all that you’ve learned and experienced and just go for it. Make the move. Apply for the job. Begin that project. Run the race. Take the step of faith…
And when the going gets tough, you just have to press on.
One step in front of the other…that’s my plan. Press on. Finish the race. 17 days until 26.2
What’s your 26.2? What’s a step of faith you’ve taken or think you should take?