“Set a goal so big it scares you.”
Having a big goal is…kind of scary. Having a big goal and putting it out there, publicly….kind of super-scary.
But here it is: I’m training to run Grandma’s Marathon in June. Today I ran a 10k and kicked off my official training schedule to tackle 26.2.
For anyone who knows me and was expecting something big, that’s probably a giant letdown. I’ve run marathons before, I’m usually training for one every spring.
So why the big fuss over keeping this one to myself so long?
For the first time ever, I’m training for a marathon with a very real possibility I won’t end up being able to run it.
First off, I have a bad hamstring that keeps me on edge every day.
Second off, I worry about the strength of my pelvic floor being able to handle 16, 18, and 20+ mile runs.
Third off, I have a one-year-old. My son just turned one, it’s crazy to refer to him as a one-year-old vs. my baby. Oh, parenting!
The combination of these three very large factors gives me worry that I won’t be able to complete my goal of running Grandma’s Marathon alongside my oldest friend, Maggie.
After she mentioned her goal to run a full marathon this year, I eagerly jumped onboard with her. How fun! We could run together, her first marathon, my first since becoming a mom. A great opportunity to help each other, vent to each other, and push each other. Plus I love running and I love running marathons and I love the idea of running Grandma’s Marathon after having the itch for a couple years now.
But, the reality is still a factor. Will my hamstring cooperate? Will my pelvic floor strength be good enough? And, most importantly, will the love and chaos, the fun and fatigue, everything that comes with being an equal parenting partner and mother to a one-year-old be enough of a non-factor?
I thought about that last sentence and was very careful to say anything resembling prevent, stop, or get in the way of my goal.
While my muscles could stop me from running in June, my son will not. Because if I choose to skip runs and stray from my training plan because he needs more from me, or I need more sleep or downtime, it’s just that – my choice.
I’ve continued to love and make time for working out and running, even while adjusting to the change and demands of parenthood. Here’s hoping that rings true with marathon-ing as well.
Fellow marathon runners, how did you balance parenting and getting back into marathon running? Any advice, words of wisdom, or other “wish-I-would-have-knows” for me as I take on this challenge. Please share in the comments or tweet me, @LindsayIRL.