Wednesday, June 3, 2009

United We Fall

Hubby and I signed up for the San Jose Rock 'N Roll Half Marathon today. It's scheduled to be held in October- two weeks before I'm supposed to run the Nike Women's Marathon. Ok- so those two races sound do-able except that I'm also running the SF Marathon at the end of July.

This has me wondering- do I have an addiction to running? Better yet, do I have an addiction to racing? I think I have a little bit of both. Considering that instead of looking at cosmetics and celebrity gossip online, I look at running blogs and the Runner's World site, I'd say that I definitely have a strong attraction to running.

So, what draws me to running? It's the fact that some people think it's HARD. Sometimes people think it's something they could never do themselves. I'm attracted to the mental challenge of running 10 or 20 miles. Sometimes, it's a mental challenge to run 2 miles! I'm also attracted to the community that running creates. There's nothing like running to the top of a San Francisco cable car hill with your running parters, in silence, until one of you is able to catch enough breath to say, "good job everyone!" Right now, I run with a group of people that, without running, I would have never met. I know more about some of my running mates than I know about people that I call my friends. You can get really close to someone when you've conquered sixteen miles with them in the rain.

Like running, races provide a mental, as well as a physical, challenge. While I'm certainly not going to win any of these races (seriously- there's no way), I still have goals in mind (finish both marathons in 5 hours or less- the second faster than the first). Even though the element of competition isn't that important, I still get nervous before a race. I wonder if I can really do it. Will I finish? How will I feel at mile 1, mile 5, mile 16, or mile 25? Will I look terrible in the post-race pictures (yes, this is a concern!). Every time I run a race, I prove to myself that I am strong, that I am athletic!

So, do I think that three long-distance races over the course of three months is a little much? Yes, I do. Am I excited to feed my addiction? Yes I am!

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