I suppose this all started with me just needing a good run to clear my head, even if only temporarily.
I got out and the weather was amazing: 15°C and sunny – not your typical weather for November in Ottawa! So I decided to go off on a little adventure, and headed to the Prescott-Russell Trail. Usually I just run a short part of it and then continue on through the neighbourhood. But this time I decided to stay and do my whole run on the trail. It was nice and quiet, and my legs felt good. Realizing I could certainly benefit from a little pick-me-up, I decided to try again for that 21.1km goal!
I had to laugh at how ill-prepared I had been for this run once I got into it. I mean, it was only 2km in that my bluetooth headphones died, leaving me with nothing but silence and the company of my own thoughts for the duration of my run. I didn’t think to bring gels or sustenance of any sort, but had thankfully eaten a piece of toast with peanut butter before heading out!
I wasted time taking selfies, and even stopped to catch a frog!
Then I used my precious limited amount of water to wash my hands afterwards! Not preparing for a half marathon meant that I only had my two little bottles on me instead of a full hydration pack. So I was kicking myself when I ran out of water with over 6km of running left to go. But by then I was determined this was going to be the day! I needed this! I had to complete this run!
I managed to make a good run of it until about 16km, at which point I realized that I still had a whole 5k ahead of me – and it wasn’t that long ago that 5ks used to be my entire run! I started to feel my legs weaken as I hit uncharted running distances.
I debated quitting as I continued my run through the neighbourhood, close to home. I had been out of the house a long time, I was thirsty, lacking confidence, and feeling hot in my long sleeved shirt. I had every reason to give up, but sheer determination kept me going. I was going to finish 21.1 kilometres even if I had to walk the last 5! 😉
And it all paid off. What an amazing feeling it was to see that I had completed a half marathon all on my own! So proud! In disbelief! And so excited to share my story – You guys won’t believe what I did today!!!
I definitely have to dedicate this momentous run in memory of Chris. ❤
Thinking about it, I’m glad that I did my first half marathon on my own rather than in a race. It was a difficult challenge that I wasn’t too sure I could complete (as I had tried on my runs a couple of times before). Running on my own also meant that I could pace myself and take as many walking breaks as I needed without feeling any pressure to speed up.
That being said, today the Army Run opened up a special discounted registration for next year’s race and I did just sign up to do the half marathon – eeek!
So now I focus on working towards building up my strength, stamina, and endurance, and hopefully be ready for my first half marathon race 317 days from now! 😉