Happiness is like a butterfly; the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder – Thoreau
There is an offshoot to exercise – that wonderful thing called endorphins. Theory is, they will kick in after you complete the task at hand. The last couple of races, those endorphins have had some difficulty showing up at the right time.
That being said, a few days out, after a few long soaks in the tub, a massage and time to reflect, I’m pretty darn happy. Perhaps because I didn’t chase it, but I turned my attention to THE FINISH.
“The miracle isn’t that you finished. The miracle is that you had the courage to start.” – adapted from John Bingham
I saw this quote today, hand printed on a sign, leaning up against an old chair, right at the top of a hill. The hardest hill of my half marathon trek today. Halfway up the hill, two ladies were dressed in crazy outfits, playing music and dancing away. They also had a sign, “It’s a hill. Get over it”
This was the hardest half marathon walk of the five I have done. I really, really (really) wanted to do a personal best and my first half pace put me right on track. And then, around kilometre 11, the wheels started to fall off the bus. I had pushed so hard in that first half, I believe, that I was not going to be able to keep it up. I did the first 10 km in 1 hour 24 minutes. That’s a pace of 8 minutes 24 seconds. To runners, that sounds easy breezy. And probably for many walkers.
My pace in the second half was 9 minutes 24 seconds. Oops. Was it the hills? The lack of enough food before I started? Who knows?
I do know this. I have never trained harder and felt better before a race. And when things were going good – and there were times in the second half when things were going good – I was very happy.
So, although like the flower below, I’m a bit worse for wear tonight, I’m a happy half marathoner!
How I feel tonight…..