It has now been 4 weeks since I first mentioned my recommitment to running and training for the 2017 Portland Shamrock Run. Since that time, we have posted on their new times and routes, team options and remembering back on Run Oregon’s favorite Shamrock memories. However, I haven’t really given an update as to my own progress.
Despite all the craziness that 2017 has come with, I have managed to put in over 110 miles this month. This is higher than my total of all of the 3 months of 2016. I can feel my lung capacity getting better with each week, and the 4-5 mile runs I usually do aren’t as labored as they once were. Last weekend, I put in a 10-miler, which included the final half feeling better than the first. The left me with some confidence for sure.
The real key to half marathons, in my opinion, is the mental piece AND the committment to putting in miles. This was my biggest obstacle in January. The first week of running again was a mixture of good and bad. The adrenaline of getting out there again was fantastic, but the lack of endurance was significantly noticeable and somewhat personally embarrassing for someone who has run over 40 half marathons. Follow that week up with a series of challenges – namely my brother’s wedding weekend – as well as the crazy weather and illnesses in my family, and things could have really turned south. Somehow, I was able to stay strong and put in the miles.
I raced a LOT less than I wanted to, and that I am used to. After doing a triple race on January 1st (Run Wild Adventures’ New Years Day Hangover 5k, 3k, AND beer mile), I have yet to race since. My previous paragraph laid out some of the reasons (wedding, weather, and family illness), but I also had some fatherly responsibilities that I couldn’t break away from (and didn’t want to either). Being a new father of three really makes this more of a challenge than I anticipated it being, and my desire to race will have to sometimes take a back seat to “real life”.
We will have more posts throughout February about the upcoming Shamrock Run (only 7 weeks away), so stay tuned. My plan is to continue with the miles and put a little bit more effort into locating some hills to prepare my mind and body for the Barbur Boulevard and Terwilliger curves climbs. How is your training going? Let me know so we can stay motivated together!