Just back from the first of many training runs for my upcoming first marathon in March, I realized a lot of the old "firsts" are coming back to me.
The "Can I really do this?" questions. The funny, self-imposed routines prior to workouts. (Chapstick. Check. Ipod. Check. Planned route. Check. Socks straight. Check. Shoes tied just tight enough...) The "Will this bother me during the race?" obsessions. (I stopped and readjusted my ponytail twice. It was hitting the back of my right ear over and over again.)
Preparing for a race is always an adventure all on its own. The weather is a factor. Health is a factor. Family circumstances are a factor.
All of these factors can fill me with doubt. They can overwhelm me. Whisperings of failure can plague my mind.
It is the promise of reaching a new goal that fuels my body and helps me overcome my reluctance to "go for it." It is the joy of crossing a finish line. It is the process of training my body and subduing my negative inner voices. It is also the inspiration I can be to others who have dreams of their own.
"I can do this" is my new mantra. "I will succeed" is my continual refrain. There will be days I want to skip a workout. There will be circumstances I have to work around to accomplish my goal.
This is always the way training begins for me. It's a mountain before me I fear I can't climb.
However, as I settle into a routine and I accomplish new mini-goals in my training I am filled with a glorious sense of accomplishment. I know I am one step closer to realizing a dream...