thinking it through

My mind is all darty and extra-kooky today.  That can only mean one thing: there is a race on the horizon!  And the fact that I have not yet decided whether I am running 13.1 or 26.2 might be seriously contributing to my insanity.  Yes, yes I think it is completely safe to say that it is.

I’m a classic Type A personality.  Also known as: a control freak.  I love lists.  I love making plans.  Setting goals.  This is the way I roll.  I’m completely aware of this aspect of my personality and it is something I work on constantly.  I want to be more relaxed and flexible, but the truth is I am more relaxed when I know what to expect.  Funny how that works.

So Richmond is in 2 days.  We leave tomorrow and I have a little more than 24 hours to make my decision about whether or not to switch to the half marathon.  This is one of those moments in my life where I am forced to learn how to let go.  I need to be laid back about this and trust that whatever decision I make will be the best one for me.  I need to stop freaking out!

When I’m faced with big decisions I like to make lists of pros and cons to help me decide.  So, here we go:

Reasons TO run the full marathon:

  • I love marathons.  There is nothing like a 26.2!
  • My sister wants to run the full and we could run it together.  We haven’t run a race together – like side-by-side together – in two years.  We also haven’t trained much together this season because our goals were so different.  It would be really nice to have that time together.
  • It would be FUN – not about a time goal, just about enjoying the race.
  • I have never run the full Richmond marathon and I hear it is a really wonderful course.  Plus I love Richmond and spent years working there.  The city holds a special place in my heart.
  • T, G and their posse are all running the full and it would be super fun to share the experience with them also.

Reasons NOT TO run the full marathon:

  • I have already run 2 marathons in the past 2 months.  Adding a third is a lot on my body.
  • I want to begin training for my spring marathon (USA Rock n Roll, National) in early December.  That is soon. I want to enter this training with fresh legs and feeling mentally strong.
  • I tweaked my back earlier this week.  While it is nothing serious and doesn’t bother me much, it is my body talking to me and I need to listen and be careful. Because….
  • I do not want to get injured!  The big picture and my 2012 goals are super important to me.  I am going to be in Boston in 2013 no matter what it takes.  But I am human and humans get injured if they are stupid and don’t listen to their bodies.  I need to focus on the bigger picture and not be an idiot.
  • I could run the half instead and put less damage on my body while still enjoying the weekend so much.  Maybe even set a a new half PR and certainly a course PR (I did the Richmond half two years ago in just over 2 hours.  I know I can blow that out of the water in a sick way.  That would be fun.)  Or, I could run the second half of the full with my sister and buddies and that would be majorly fun, too.
  • I am not planning to go after my BQ at this race.  If I run it, I am running it for fun.  Why is this in the “not to run” column?  Well, because a marathon even if it isn’t your hardest effort or best finishing time, is a lot of toll on your body.  If I am not going after this BQ/PR at this race and I come out of it feeling beat up or worse, injured, I could risk not being on top of my game for training for my spring marathon.  This is a serious consideration for me.
  • My husband really feels strongly that I should run the half.  He supports me in whatever I decide, but from where he stands he thinks it is a lot on my body and also he reminded me that if I run the half that means we get more time together with one kid instead of three.  And that is sweet.  Definitely something to think about.

Ok … that is all I can come up with for now.  Some of these items weigh heavier in my mind than others.  I am going to let it all marinate and then we’ll see what I cook up when it’s decision time.  I do feel really good knowing that, no matter what it, is going to be an awesome weekend.  I love running races and cannot wait to experience Richmond 2012!

So, can you guys come up with any pros or cons that I haven’t thought of?  How do you make big decisions?  Are you a list person too?

4 thoughts on “thinking it through

  1. Hmmm. Tough one! I always make pro and con lists, but they never help! Pros and Cons assume you are being rational and not using emotion. I personally think you should run the half marathon to limit the wear and tear on your body, but kudos to you if you can pull off the full! Whatever race you choose, good luck!

  2. I can't seem to get into the “running a marathon for fun” mindset. Lol! Therefore if it were me (because I have BIG goals for 2012 as well), I'd go for the half. I gotta be honest here, your CON list seems stronger than the PRO list. Good luck though!

  3. Well, you have more cons than pros, but I'm kinda a go for the full gusto girl so I'd shoot for the full! Maybe you can just run it slowly and use it as a slow training run…I've done that and have recovered much quicker after. Whatever you do, good luck and have a blast!!! 🙂

  4. In your position, I would run the half. You have big goals for the spring and a training plan lined up for them. I'm with your husband on this one (though your sister in the full is strong selling point there…..) I know you'll have fun no matter what you choose, so try not to worry too much either way!!

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