Yesterday I ran 8.2 miles, my longest run yet. I never thought I’d run that far before deciding to train for a half marathon. To be honest I used to think I couldn’t do it. I thought that my old ankle injury would handicap me too much and to be honest, it’s really stiff today. I can barely bend it.
I think about it differently now though. I think about a lot of things differently. Training for this race and steadily increasing my longest run distance has changed me. I feel more capable in general. I feel more confident. Barriers seem less insurmountable. I see challenges in a different light which helps me see ways to tackle them.
A week ago I did a 7 mile run. Mile number 7 was really difficult and I had to really concentrate to keep running. This week the first 7 miles were pretty easy and it was mile 8 that was really difficult. I did have Amanda with me on this run which was a huge help as far as making the run go quickly and distracting me from having to think “Ok, still running, keep going, only x more miles to go.” but still, the progress is there. I’m stronger than I was. I have more endurance than I’ve had in… decades I guess.
In the past if I tried to do something and woke up with an ankle this stiff that made me hobble around I would have said well… I guess I can’t do that. My new training brain is thinking about how we can best recover so I can make my 3 mile run on Monday. I look forward to pushing myself. I relish testing my limits. I take pride in my achievements.
This training brain thought process isn’t limited to running and exercise. It bleeds out into the rest of my life and is positively impacting my attitude toward challenges in my studies as well. In all aspects of my life I’m shedding apathy. I see footholds in barriers that seemed smooth and shear before. It’s refreshing and encouraging. Sure I still have days when things seem extra hard but I’m constantly proving to myself that I can do things I didn’t think I could and that makes a huge difference.
So, no jokes this post and I haven’t been taking many pictures lately, but here is an inspirational picture of Indy for you. She is becoming more confident all the time too (maybe a little too confident and a little too comfortable with being off her leash, but that’s a story for another time)