Garfield the cat claimed to hate Mondays - and he never had to start his week off with a 40 minute run.
Yep, two days into my 2nd week of marathon training, and I’m remembering all the things I loved – and all the things I found challenging – about training for my first half marathon last year.
I did that race in Oct, and finished exhausted but feeling strong, healthier than I’d ever been. But I celebrated my new-found fitness and commemorated all that hard work…by immediately sliding back into bad habits.
That’s why I found myself huffing and panting my way around London's Green Park yesterday lunchtime, suddenly completely unconvinced by that old saying that the first step is the hardest. In fact, all of the steps that made up the first twenty minutes of my run were the hardest; there were moments when I felt like collapsing onto the nearest bench and rethinking this whole idea.
Then, somewhere around the halfway point, my Ipod shuffled its way onto a Green Day song just as I reached a downhill section of path. Fighting the temptation to let my arms windmill around me like a child, I bombed it down the incline and the rhythm and momentum carried me through the rest of the run.
When I reached my 40 minute mark, I stopped, dead. Exhausted but feeling strong.
Now, I know plenty of runners who scoff at the very idea of listening to music – those hardcore athletes would rather listen to the biomechanical feedback of their body. But at this early stage, having a tune in my ear is really helping me along – I'm off to put together a running playlist!
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