As I fall back into my running routine…it is a wonderful phase. My fitness is at its peak…but there is no pressure of a race. Net result- I am running relaxed and easy which is translating into great runs…with pace and distance. The weather is also an important factor… this is the best time for all of us. To enjoy the sport for what it is.
As I did a speed run last morning, 6 rounds at the race course- 3 at a fast pace and 3 at a faster pace, I enjoyed the early morning mist… the haze-(although, I think that was smoke!) we talked of vampires coming out of the fog in one round, the English moors and Hound of the Baskervilles in the next, to the tea estate of Munnar in the third. An amber dawn formed a beautiful backdrop for new high rises. All-in-all, a fun morning.
By the 6th round, we (Rahul, Vishal and me) had completed 14.5 km and by then and I was lagging behind…not that much- just a few steps. Typically, I would have let that distance remain. I would have run within myself, and finished ok. On target yes, but not really strong.
At that moment, something changed within me…and I thought to myself- why should I let them go ahead- I am not breathing hard, not cramping, and to be honest- I am not even trying that hard… I will stay with them – Eureka! I “actioned” my thought and finished strong- 2 steps ahead of them I felt like a winner.
The way you train is the way you race.
I have always believed that and this year my training for the marathon was perfect- but I had failed in my head. “I will stay with them”, in hind sight seems like a very logical thought- but to me, at that moment it was like I had found the key to take my running to the next level. The increased dopamine, my relaxed state of mind and the rhythmic running, lifted the fog. The truth was always out there for me to find. I just wasn’t ready to embrace it.
“I think so often runners get so result – oriented that they forget about the journey. It is not really about the finish line or the time that you remember; you remember the people and the person you became In the process of overcoming the obstacles or running distances you haven’t run before.”
– Jamie Dodge, Coach
Only a 80 second difference in both my finish times.
It is never too late to be who you might have been. —George Eliot
Now I know what I need to work on…and I have found the way.