Monday, September 19, 2016

I’ve been focusing a lot lately on certain words and have made those words the topic of my posts.  Tonight is no exception. Throughout my training this time around I’ve thought about a word or a series of words that have evoked certain emotions in me.  Today that word was “feel.”

It’s been a long time since I ran in the rain, but after sleeping in today and waiting until after my work day to run, I was fortunate to get caught in a fairly steady rain.  I love running in the rain.  I love how it feels.  I also know that this training period, which is now into week #10 (just 47 more days until the TCS New York Marathon), has had a completely different feel.  Not necessarily bad, although I could make that argument; just different.  It’s what I’ve come to expect as I have taken on this task 11 times now.  My previous 10 experiences have been somewhat different and unique in their own way, but as I fiddled with this word tonight on my run, I wondered, which preparation period has been the best?  I can’t say for sure if my choice was simply due to the fact that it was just last year, and so far way better than this year, or if I simply don’t remember much about the other 9 training experiences.  Either way, I have pretty much settled on the fact that last year is a hard one to beat.  For one, I was blogging daily and I felt that I was on a mission.  Running the marathon in honor of my father (who is still struggling with his health) and all the emotions that went into that certainly has it standing alone.

Truthfully I’ve struggled through 9+ weeks of running this time around.  It’s been well documented here, and I hate to keep re-hashing, but coming off an emotional high and setting several running records last year (in terms of miles run, streak, etc.), I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that there was bound to be a letdown.  I’m running.  I’m just not running strong.  As I pondered through the rain drops this evening, I am not feeling it.  I know that I should.  I know that in a very short period of time I’ll tackle one of the toughest distances in one of the tougher locations in the United States.  And yet, I cannot seem to get my mojo going.

Today, I came off one of the more difficult weekends I’ve had in awhile.  To break it down simply, I left work Friday evening and went to umpire a fall ball game, getting home around 8:30 p.m.  Saturday morning I awoke and ventured out on my planned 18-mile training run.  Knowing I had to officiate two hockey games later in the day, I decided to listen to my body and cut the run short to a 15-miler.  With barely time to shower and grab some lunch I went to referee a peewee ice hockey game and then worked lines on a college game (about 3 1/2 hours of skating) before getting back home around 8:45 p.m.  Sunday morning I woke early to head back to Delaware to skate a U16 Midget hockey game.  All in all, I expended a lot of energy and by this morning when my alarm went off, I just wasn’t feeling it.

Inevitably I make a lot of decisions based on how I feel.  If something doesn’t feel right, I don’t do it.  If I feel like doing something, I do it.  When my body feels like it felt this morning, I reluctantly cave to the pressure as my mind and my body wage a war of peer pressure on one another.  I am so ultra-competitive that the entire weekend had me feeling off.  I did not feel right cutting the run short on Saturday.  My legs felt dead this morning, and while I was out on the run tonight, my legs felt sluggish.  Pretty much par for the course through 9 weeks and 1 day.

Normally I could tell you that I feel like I’m right there and things will go back to normal any day, but lately I feel old.  I know 46 isn’t old, but the hard reality that I wrestle with is that it seems to get a little bit tougher, every day, month and year.  I know it’s just nature taking its course, but my mind is still 20 and I’m having a hard time dealing with this feeling.  You feel me?

Run on…

Official 2016 NYC Shoes. Can't wait to get mine.

Official 2016 NYC Shoes. Can’t wait to get mine.

Official Shoes

Official Shoes

Definitely "felt" like a Monday today.

Definitely “felt” like a Monday today.