Seventeen miles wasn’t my goal. I was determined to get nineteen miles in. But after seventeen miles, there was a drawbridge between me and my goal. It looked like a mountain. I had been training in Ohio. But now I was in Florida. It was 10:00 AM and 91° Fahrenheit. My water bottles were nearly empty. I decided to call it off and get a ride.
Next month (September 2017), I plan to run The Air Force Marathon in Dayton, Ohio. It will be my first marathon and I have been training for the race. I was determined to keep to my schedule despite the change of locale.
Three days later, I am thinking about what the run taught me.
- The earlier the better: I decided to wait until sunrise. If I awoke an hour earlier, I bet I could have made it. There was a ten-degree rise in temperature in the last hour I was running.
- Getting up early to achieve a goal is worth it, especially when there is a beautiful sunrise awaiting you.
- You may think you’re alone in your goal until you meet scores of others doing the same thing.
- After a day, I want to go at it again. However, I know it is better to let my body rest and to follow my training schedule instead of making up for a short goal.
- Aiming for a goal and falling short is far more satisfying than not trying.
The experience continues to be worth it. Running has taught me to plan, persevere, and to celebrate even when I fall a little short of a goal. I have also learned attempting is far better than never trying in the first place.