Last Saturday we finished our assigned long run of 3 hours and 30 minutes. It was our longest run for this training cycle.
I joined the pace group of Coach Jim. I ran behind him but had to fall back a little because I could smell the strong cologne of the runner beside me. Ughh! Haha! Anyway, when we finished the first loop, (approx. 15Km), I went for a bathroom break and when I came out, the group was gone.
I could still see Coach Jim’s apple green shirt so I wasn’t too far behind. It would have been fun to stay with the group, I mean, I enjoyed Coach Jim’s elephant jokes. Really! And I could feed off energy from the other dreamers. But I just ran alone and it was tough. Sometimes my mind would wander and I had to remind myself, “Hey, wake up, you’re training for a marathon!”
In a way I was glad that I was left behind. It was an opportunity for me to hone my mental strength, which is a very important aspect in running a marathon. It was the time to learn how to quiet the voices inside my head. I challenged my mind to stay focused and learn how to handle boredom. It was said that the best way of improving your capacity to endure boredom is to endure boredom, to find enjoyment in the repetitive action of putting one foot in front of the other. Simply put, delight in the monotonous.
For the second loop, I used the 30 second run – 15 second walk interval. At one point, two male dreamers, originally from the 3 minute run – 1 minute walk group, ran behind me. I asked them, “Are you also doing 30:15? And they they answered, “We’re just following you.” What!
I finally caught up with Coach Jim’s group at the end of Nuvali Boulevard. We headed back to Solenad and the sun beat down on us. It was really HOT. Strange, because when we started, the temperature recorded a chilly16.9 degrees Celsius, the lowest temperature since year 2014 started.
We picked up the pace when we neared Solenad and finally after 28.5 Kms, we were done. Whew!
I couldn’t be happier.
Now if you are going to win this battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It’s always tired in the morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired. – George S. Patton, US Army General, 1912 Olympian