Distance Running: it’s all in my head (mostly)

It’s all in my head. Running a marathon, that is. It’s in my legs too, but my head is in worse shape. If I can see the race in my head, I can get my legs to follow.

I see myself pinning on my bib number, looking for a free toilet and checking my shoelaces for the 3rd time. It is the start of the race. Runners surround me, I’m nervous, but excited. Jostling for position, I surge ahead of the crowd, find my 3:50 pace and make my time.

I believe my head is now focused, and the rest of the training is… easy?

The Goal is Boston

In order to qualify for the Boston Marathon, I need to run a time of 3:50 in the 2013 Vancouver Marathon. Having run a 4:05:08 in my last marathon, I only need to shave off 15 minutes and 8 seconds. Aaah, that’s fast!

This is the 7th time I will train for a marathon and the 2nd marathon I have pinned my Boston hopes on.

I struggle with my ‘organized bohemian’ philosophy. Today I need to hit my ‘bohemian’ side over the head. It’s sabotaging my ‘organized’ side. Pushing myself towards a fast time feels unsustainable, I’m starting to crumble under the pressure. My head is visualizing Boston, but my soul is dreaming of running in the Medoc region of France where the wine flows freely.

Marathon du Medoc

“Yes, Boston I need your challenge, but Marathon du Medoc I’m salivating to run you in the Bordeaux region of France – dressed in a silly costume and sipping red wine along the way.” A marathon for fun and frivolity is what I desperately want to do. With a maximum time limit of 6 1/2 hours to complete the marathon (remember: runners need extra time for wine sampling), this is the pace time I’m fantasizing about.

But, alas I must meet the Boston challenge once and for all.

19km Training Run

Sunday (Feb 17) was a 19km run on the seawall. A half-marathon race was in progress as I ran along my usual training route. Trying to keep a steady pace, I felt the speed of the racers passing me so I sped up. Transformed into a child running after a friend during a game of tag, I was lost in the act of racing. It was exhilarating.

Now I remember why I want to push for Boston.

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About Organized Bohemian

Dana M. Petric is a writer/landscape gardener/blogger/performer/office temp/web designer. Her wrestle between creative and money-making ventures permeates her writing. Self-publishing her first book, Growing Iris, Dana continues on her path toward writing full-time. Beginning her post-secondary education at UBC (Liberal Arts dropout), she prevailed at George Brown Theatre School (Theatre Arts Diploma) and matured at BCIT (Technical Writing Diploma). She lives in Vancouver, BC with her partner Eric and daughter Cleo.
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5 Responses to Distance Running: it’s all in my head (mostly)

  1. I am hoping to run Marathon du Medoc in 2015 — that’s my goal, anyway. It is certainly a dream to run casually while sipping wine along the way! Have to experience it once in my life, that’s for sure!! Good luck with your goal! I’m sure you’ll hit it and make your way to Boston!

  2. I`ve started thinking races through in that space between waking and sleeping, and I think it has improved my stamina. It also has helped me to think of myself as a runner, instead of being negative by calling myself a hobbyist.

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