Tapering

Six Reasons I’m Ecstatic to Race this Weekend

May 5, 2016

The picture above says it all; it’s been a long winter, which is when this whole training mess started and I gleefully snapped this picture of my ice-covered water bottle (Valentine’s Day, to be exact). Not every race that rolls around when I feel like I’m ready for it, and it’s not so  much that I’m overly confident in my fitness right now, it’s more like this:

Someone let me go!

Someone cut me loose!

*Photo credit: Rene Schwietzke

I’m itching to race and to stand in a queue with thousands of other running crazies, but I’m also beyond excited for this particular race, which I’ve never run before (OneAmerica Mini-Marathon, I’m lookin’ at you). I’m under the 48 hour mark until the fun kicks off, so for the sake of working out some pre-race jitters, I have compiled this list of reasons why I’m ready to let it fly:

  1. I’ve been training since January. Initially I was going to race last month, bit hit a snag with a pesky tendon. So, I regrouped and realized that this race was happening. The race is a much needed release from my training. I’m ready to push it hard, whatever that may mean on Saturday, take a week or two off, then regroup and go again.
  2. This race sounds like a lot of fun. Okay, I already mentioned this, but to elaborate I get to do a lap around the Indy Speedway, and the last mile has been dubbed “Victory Mile”. Added bonus: there are a lot of musical and cheer groups on the course, and if I am lucky enough to PR, there’s a bell to ring in celebration. I don’t know, sounds like a party to me!
  3. My travel and hotel logistics worked out perfectly. Somehow the last minute hotel room I scored was affordable, happens to be connected to the convention center for the expo, and is a block away from the start line. No pre-race porta-potty line for me this time, or worrying about parking. It sort of feels like the race stars aligned.
  4. I’m ready to feel the post-race euphoria, exhausted self included. I think the experience of putting it all out there and being tired, sore, and endorphin-filled is a huge mental and physical release. I can think of fewer frustrations than cancelling a race, only because all that hard work warrants some type of climax. Training is structured toward this build-up, hence feeling like a bull stuck in a pen. I’m also ready for a mini break from training, a couple of weeks of free fall to recover and run only if/when I want.
  5. I’m curious to see how I race. I suppose this is a given, but after the past few months I’m itching to get a benchmark of where I am currently in regards to my short and long term goals, and then to use this knowledge to shake up my training.
  6. Food. Isn’t the point of racing to indulge afterwards? Forget everything else I said, and just hand me a waffle burger with guacamole, fries, and peanut butter brownies. Then later we can go out for fried chicken and apple pie, okay? (This is a random craving, but I walked by a fried chicken joint last night on my way home and was immediately overcome with the amazing smell. If it’s possible to create an olfactory mantra/meditation, mine for this race is fried chicken.)

 

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