Long blog alert!
Someone said something to me today that caught me a little off guard. Maybe it shouldn’t have, but it did. I was heading to GoodLife for a treadmill run and they said ‘Oh, you’re just training tonight? Haven’t you done your race yet?’. I think it was the emphasis on ‘just’ that made me do a double take. To me, race day is the icing and training is the rest of the cake. As great as icing is, it’s even better on top of a well baked cake.
Team Myles is not JUST training. It is one of the most positive and supportive groups I have ever been a part of. There is zero judgement of anyone and people of all fitness levels encourage each other no matter what. We even have so much fun running up and down Citadel Hill each week. I know, right?!?! Hill repeats??Fun?? What?!?!?! This year, there are TWO groups of Ambassadors training for the Blue Nose Marathon in June. My group is training for the Medavie Blue Cross Half Marathon and the other group is training for the GoodLife Fitness 10K.
We are not JUST training. Dependent on the program we’re in, we have committed to a 10 or 16 week program in which we do long runs, hill training, get nutrition coaching, have amazing support from our sponsors (LifeMark, GoodLife, Aerobics First, The Barrington Hotel, Hotel Halifax), had a motivational speech from Jill Payne about #Diming, write blogs, post our journeys on social media, raise money for the Scotiabank Charity Challenge, still maintain an outside life, and have so much fun while doing all of it. It’s intense and there have been laughs and tears and all kinds of emotions but none of us would trade it for the world.
For me, training for the Half Marathon is just as much of a mental challenge as it is physical. It took awhile to actually believe running a Half Marathon was possible. At the beginning, in my head I would quit the program during every run thinking that I’m struggling and that there will be no way I could ever build up to 21.1K. That inner voice has long been silenced. Since February 17th when we started, I have seen so much progress in myself. I have been running 5 times a week with two active rest days. So far, I have achieved my daily 5000 step goal 67 days in a row! I went from running 3 minutes and walking 2 to running 10 minutes and walking 1 on long runs and being able to run continuously on shorter nights. Three weeks ago I was able to run 5K STRAIGHT with no walk breaks. I had only ever done that a couple of times before in 2016 and never fathomed it would be possible again. I did it again this past Monday! I’ve even caught myself saying ‘Oh, I’m ONLY doing 5K tonight’. 5K used to be a dream distance to run and I can’t believe I have said that.
Sunday past, there was no one at my pace for the long run so I did 16K by myself. 16 kilometers!!!!! I only saw other team members when we hit the turnaround point and they were all doing amazing. It gave me a boost to keep running. It was tough, but the feeling of mental accomplishment after completing that challenge was so needed. I could have easily turned around early or walked during run intervals, but I didn’t. I have learned through training that I am so much stronger than I have ever given myself credit for. Once I believed I could do this mentally, the physical came right along with it. I have pushed my limits, but have not pressured myself and have followed the training plan faithfully. It has worked wonderfully. Tell me that isn’t JUST training.
I honestly cannot say enough good things about the program and the people that Blue Nose has chosen to be coaches, mentors, and ambassadors. They are some of the most incredible people I have ever met and I have learned so much from each and every one of them. I almost don’t want race day to ever get here because I know this whole experience will be over. I do know that for sure that I will continue running afterwards and that these people will still be around. We’re family now.