One Week Out from the 2019 Austin Marathon
“The effort it takes to complete any long distance race requires a slow build of endurance and fortitude. You may not realize it in the moment, but each training session adds a layer to a foundation that enables us to do some dope shit..”
When I ran the Austin Marathon last time, it didn’t go so well.
I didn’t set a personal best, I didn’t even finish close to the expected time I had in my mind.
There are several things looking back I could mention that contributed to that poor outing, but what’s more important is how I learned from it. I will be running the Austin Marathon again, and I have improved on the two biggest lessons from last time: Training and Mindset.
My goal isn’t necessarily to improve my time in Austin, but at least my experience. Mentally and Physically, I was drained after that race. I was so demoralized about not meeting my expectations that I really couldn’t appreciate the race environment which was unreal. Of all the marathons I’ve completed, Austin had the best crowd energy…and race snacks. But I didn’t allow myself to truly appreciate this aspect of the race, instead I was drowning in the negative thoughts that consumed my head knowing that I wasn’t going to finish within my goal time.
I was thinking about listing all the reasons why I didn’t do well last time I ran Austin, but that really doesn’t matter. What matters is the fact that I recognize the aspects I can control, like my training and mindset. I am happy to report that I have improved in both areas, and I am ready to take on Austin once again!
I’ve mentioned this before, but I am treating the Austin Marathon as part of my training for the 50 Mile race I’m running on March 30 in Kansas. Training has been going well. For the most part, I’ve stuck to a 5 times per week running schedule, completing back-to-back long runs on the weekends. I might have missed a mile or 2 here or there due to time restraints, but I think I’m in a good spot. Last weekend, I ran 22 Miles Saturday, followed by 12 Miles Sunday. Per usual, I took Monday completely off but I don’t think I had to because I wasn’t that sore the next day. However, making sure I rest frequently during my training is also something I’ve improved on. It is during rest that you truly get better.
On the mindset side of things, doing these monster training sessions on the weekends have really set the tone for my mental leading up to the race. I haven’t let the elements deter me from pounding the pavement. I’ve ran for hours in absolutely horrible weather. Cold, rainy, windy weather has calloused my mind to a point where the thought of running the Austin Marathon in the same 2017 conditions no longer worries me. In fact, running 20+ miles in 80 degree muggy weather actually sounds like a nice change of pace from the 30 something rainy weather with 30 mph crosswinds that I’ve been training in.
SO BRING IT ON AUSTIN!!!
With all that said, I am running this race with a much lighter mindset and expectation..which is to enjoy the race and finish. I also plan to enjoy the oh so many snacks provided by the wonderful Austin crowd that supports the racers each and every year. Derrick is also running the race this year, and I think we both have a similar expectation..finish and enjoy ourselves. Personal bests are cool, and there’s something to be said about giving it your all, going HAM and pushing it to the max. There’s a time and place for all of that, but I have to keep my eye on the prize. This year is about the distance, about doing something I’ve never done before, nor ever thought I’d be capable of achieving. 50 miles is nearly 2 marathons, I’ve got to save my best effort to complete it.
So with that, I’m coming for you Austin. I’m coming to celebrate this amazing race with you, and enjoy the tremendous hospitality you provide to each and every racer that runs along your path. While I am hoping for ideal weather conditions and a flatter course, know that I am grateful for running you once again.
Here we go!