Thursday, October 2, 2014

If you're going to dream, dream big.

It may have come through a bit on the blog, but I've been moping a little bit about the upcoming marathon.

Since the day we signed up, my husband and I planned to run it together - side by side. When we signed up, our paces were pretty close. It didn't occur to either of us we'd fall out of sync, but I seem to have found my groove while running and for a variety of reasons, he's fallen out of his. Truth to tell, he's not really loving the whole running thing right now.

I kind of knew this while I was training but when we did our first training run together, it became really apparent that the race I'd been training for wasn't the one we were going to be running. And don't get me wrong - I want to run this race with him. We don't usually get to do things together between his work schedule and the kids and their schedules. I have every intention of crossing that finish line holding hands.

But it kind of stung that all the hours I've put in were going to culminate in a long training run, that I couldn't really race Chicago. It was still going to be an accomplishment, but not quite...the finale I'd been working towards, if that makes sense.

I started contemplating a second marathon and after a lot of research Naperville was the only one that fit the bill; it was a week later than I would have preferred but that was doable. It was close enough and flat enough. I got energized again. I'd run Chicago with my husband, and Naperville for me. But I didn't want to sign up until after Chicago because well...what if I hated it? Or got hurt? Or something?

But...Naperville filled up. Oops.

I started thinking about a spring marathon, but I was back to moping a bit. I want the months of training to culminate in me giving something my best shot, and Chicago wasn't going to be that. (Not in a time sense, because I don't have a marathon time goal - but you still want to know you really tried, you know?)

And then...I found the Chicago Lake Front 50k. It's not a marathon, but it's close. It's flat. It's the right week. It's 31 miles the week before my 31st birthday. I'll have a 26 mile training run 3 weeks prior. According to the Trail/UR group I'm in, the stars had aligned and it was a sign. It's small, it doesn't fill up, and I can wait to commit until the week before if I want.

Guys? I'm gonna run an ultra.


  1. Replies
    1. I'm tripping a little at the thought, but I think it's the label. Training wise, I know I can do it.

      And I might never wanna do it again.

      But I'm gonna do it at least once!

  2. EEK! You can totally do it! I'll support you, as long as you refer to it as the MEGA marathon ;)

  3. OH MY how amazing you will be amazing!

  4. I really think the 31 for 31 is fun! I did my first 26.2 the year I turned 26 and like stuff like that! But if you do an ultra, you still won't know what you can do in the marathon! Is that going to bother you? :) (not trying to rain on your parade ;) )

    1. Yes!! I think so too. Although, now who knows what I'll do next year, but I'd be lying if I said that didn't make it more appealing!

      Yes and no. I mean - yes. It means a spring marathon is definitely in my future. Because you're completely right. But at least this way I can reframe my training cycle as an ultra training cycle and not feel like I'm ending on an anticlimax. Does that make sense?

    2. Yeah, that makes sense. There is huge letdown after a race (just, a "what am I going to do next?" sort of thing), so now you can extend that to the 50K and call the slower runs of this cycle ultra training. Although maybe paved ultras still go at road pace? That is why I like the slower trail ones. Ha ha.

    3. Haha. I don't know! They probably do. But I'm going to approach this at my own pace anyway, so it's all good. At least now I feel like I can have a goal for me. Not that I resent the race with my husband - I'm really looking forward to it. But it hit home a bit that I don't really get to push myself. The 50k will definitely push me!

  5. COOL! Sounds like it fits all the parameters. Go you!

  6. Wow, that's awesome that you're going for an ultra! It really seems like the stars lined up perfectly for this one and that it's meant to be :)