“Gratitude turns what we have into enough.”
This week’s blog comes on the heels of a good week – and one that could have been a rough one.
Saturday was supposed to be the Fargo Marathon. I trained for the marathon through most of the early part of this year and, before I heard of its postponement to August, had every intention of being at the start line alongside my fellow pacers and runners. I was especially looking forward to running my second marathon while pregnant (I ran Chicago Marathon back in 2018 while 15 weeks along with my son).
Everything I Love About Running Marathons
I spent all last week slightly on edge. Normally, I’d be fully on edge, obsessively checking the weather, closely monitoring my food and water intake, and carefully scheduling those last few taper runs and recovery efforts.
So why still slightly on edge? I think I was greatly missing that fully on edge time.
See, I love everything about marathon training. I love the euphoria after a successful long run and also the angst of gutting out the tough ones. I love the feeling of my body being strong and fit and also the slight aches and pains that come with working hard. I especially have no problem fully embracing an exceptionally large appetite. Sure, I have tough days where I don’t feel like running and days I’m tired and would rather sleep in than stick to my schedule. But I even still love that.
I also really love the week before the marathon. I’ve learned to love the taper. I love the relaxed, shorter runs, the planning and organizing for race day, seeing the Fargo Marathon signage and road markings make their appearance, and especially going to the expo. Add the icing on the cake, the actual run itself, and it’s become one of my favorite weeks every year.
I really missed all that.
Grieving then Moving On
While I have no shame admitting I spent a little time feeling bummed and sad (okay, most of Saturday and even part of Sunday) I tried to spend more time reflecting on all the good things that came from not running the marathon.
Instead of spending my Saturday mornings prepping, running, and stretching, I slept in and enjoyed pancakes in pjs with my son.
I embraced the opportunity to be flexible with my running schedule to skip days when the weather was less than favorable.
Rather than tough it out and visit my physical therapist every week, I chose to scale back and rest when I started to feel the really tough aches and pains come on (it’s true what everyone says – the second pregnancy really is harder than the first).
But most of all, I still enjoy daily and weekend runs, with less pressure on myself to hit strict pace or mileage goals. Because, while not running Fargo Marathon for the first time in more than a dozen years definitely was tough, not getting to run the marathon doesn’t mean I don’t get to run.
We Still Get to Run
I think that’s the most important piece of this experience – being okay to be sad about what I missed out on but also being grateful for what I have, that I’m still able to run and that I’m still enjoying the miles. For some, this means continuing what we’ve always done, for others, this has been a great time to start running.
True, our races might be canceled (for how long, no one knows). But I’m here to remind you what’s important: running is not canceled. We still get to run. Grieve the loss of your race, that’s totally okay. Then, keep running.
And who knows, maybe my body wouldn’t have help us as strong through all those miles had I not taken it easier. All I know for sure, right now, is I feel good and healthy, right now, another positive.
While Saturday was tough, the rest of the weekend was full of positivity, bookended with a birthday on Friday and Mother’s Day on Sunday which, for me, pretty much just means more reason to eat good food and extra sunshine that comes from all the text, Facebook, and in-person messages from friends and family.
Not a marathon but still pretty great.
Have you found yourself in a similar situation, bummed about missing out on something that was canceled due to COVID-19? After allowing yourself the okay to be bummed, did you try to focus on the positive side of it?
The comments are your space to share thoughts so please do so. Or, connect with me @lindsayinreallife on Instagram or @LindsayIRL on Twitter. Subscribe to Wellness in Real Life so you get every new blog post straight to your inbox.