Tuesday, May 31, 2011

kind of a big deal

After watching the amazing runners over the weekend, I got to thinking...

I used to run events all the time. (I prefer to call them events as opposed to races)

Why did I stop?

I can't exactly tell you why.... but if I'm being 100% honest, I think I just got caught up in the competitive side of things. I was constantly feeling bad about my performance, and as much as I don't want to say it, I kinda sorta put a little blame the blogging community for that.

Let me attempt to explain.

There are so many fabulous, strong, talented atheletes in the blogging community. They are fast. Much faster than me. Much faster that I will EVER be. I will read their race reports filled with envy, only to feel discouraged at my own times in comparison to theirs.

That being said, both blogs and running are personal. It was completely unintentional by each blogger... although I will say it stings a little when I read the words "slow" and anything that starts with "2:0_" in the same sentence.

My last half marathon was absolutely horrible. You can read about that here. I was so ashamed of myself after that race. I remember being incredibly embarassed about my time, and even more so because I ran using my dear friend Cathy's bib. I didn't talk about my time after that race... well you know what? I ran it in 2h40 and I'm friggin' proud of myself for each and everyone of those 21 kilometres.

Now that I'm older and wiser, I've come to embrace that I will likely never ever in my life run a sub 2 hour half marathon. And you know what? I'm absolutely ok with that.

I can run. I am strong. And I can finish anything I put my mind to.

All that to say, if you're looking for me on September 18th, you can find me here running the half marathon.

Best part? (read: I HATE HUMIDITY) I get to train all summer in the heat and humidity. If I survive the training, that alone will be a miracle.

It's on. And I'm friggin' pumped!


marie said...

This makes me happy :)

Anne said...

Anyone that can run a half marathon is amazing in my eyes. Go Amy!! I will be there cheering my husband on and I hope to see you!!

Lynn's Life said...

Yay! Go Amy! Did I see on FB that you and your hubby are running it together? I think that's awesome! You will suffer through the humidity and kick butt at your event! ;)

I can totally relate to your rant and feeling discouraged. In fact just yesterday I read a blog post about someone's half time being around 2:04 and they were disappointed, blah blah blah. I wanted to leave a comment saying something along the lines of "do you know how unmotivating that is to readers who are just learning to run or slow runners?" I think I will take that blog out of my reader though.

But in general yes, sometimes I feel like the healthy living blogger community is very competitive and that turns out to be more of a a hindrance then helpful.

Laura said...

In the end, it is all relative. I no longer get 'jealous' when I read other blogs and their super fast times...they are who they are. I am older than all of y'all and only started running a few yrs ago but I still put in the training so my running will be what it will be. I am getting faster...it just takes me a hella long time to get there.
If people don't want to read my ramblings cause they think I am slow...they can suck it. I dont' stop reading them cause they are fast.

rusty61 said...

I know what you're saying, Amy, and I've never got past 5K. I am super slow, but at least I was doing it. Lynn and now you are inspiring me to get back to running.

I still remember a post a long time ago from one of your events where you felt your mom pushing you onward. I'm sure I could call on my dad for some of that strength too.

Shrinking Sara said...

I know running is personal and all but I totally am on the same page, sometimes it is tough seeing someone who used run about the same now running a ton faster! I'll be lucky to break 2:15 in a half and I don't know if I ever will. For me personally I'm totally okay with that. For me out in the world in front of everyone I'm still getting there. I have to say there aren't enough of us out there, so thank you for being there!!

frankie said...

I know I told you awhile ago that you were an inspiration to me as someone who was also going through the ups and downs of losing a bunch of weight and then gaining some back, but you're also a big inspiration for why I went back to running. You'll rock the Army Half!!!! And anyone who matters will always be in awe that you completed 21k, not that you did it in x amount of time.

I have to say, Ottawa this year was probably the first race where I stuck myself at the back of my corral and just trudged on and didn't let the people passing me affect me - and it was a great feeling.

Yay slow runners!

Orionbelt24 said...

People who run, regardless of speed, inspire me. I am not a runner and I honestly don't know if I ever will be.

And being that I am a military wife, I am loving that it is a military run you are doing (even if it is ARMY...we are NAVY!)

Shari said...

Great post Amy. I'm not a runner but even I get fed up, honestly, about them posting about how disappointed they are in their times when in reality their times are still fast. I don't usually read race recaps or 'here's what I ate today' on those blogs that post those types of posts incesently. I just scroll on through. So kudos to you! You will rock the half...no matter your time! Woot!!

Natasha said...

Yay! Good for you Amy!! I can understand the competitiveness of reading other's times but just know that some of us can't even run!! I envy that you can :) Running no matter what the time is,is a huge accomplishment and you should be proud!!

Blythe said...

I so relate to you! I will never run a sub-8 mile...EVER, and that's ok. One day I just said screw all those fast runners, stopped looking obsessively at my garmin and just ran to feel alive. I've never been disappointed with the feeling of accomplishment of a work-out, and that's all I need! So run the hell out of those "events" and just enjoy the feeling of FINISHING (because you can, gosh darn it)!

ActiveEggplant said...

Good for you Amy! I was falling into the dreadful comparison trap myself for a little while & thankfully I've dragged myself out of it. I too will never be considered "fast" by others standards. But I'm proud of where I am (2:46:00 half marathon PR)and where I came from (um, not running at all). Here's to being proud of our accomplishments no matter what!

Sarah said...

Everytime I talk to people about running, the first thing out of my mouth is "do you know that the running world is so competive"? I just started running last year. And when you go to these events and you see all the elite runners I get so indimated.
And I am like you, I read all these blogs and people are so much faster then I will ever be. But you know what I have discovered that I have to run for myself and myself alone. It is my personal victory not anyone else.
I am running my first half marathon this fall.

Carol said...

I haven't even managed a PB of 2:40, so be freaking proud of yourself! Honestly, unless you are desperate to be on Canada's Olympic team, why are you upset with that time. That is not slow. Three hours is not slow. YOU.FINISHED.A.HALF.MARATHON!!! Less than one percent of the entire planet can say the same thing. Stand up, run proud and finish with a smile on your face.

BTW, I finished the Calgary marathon in a time of 5:52:53, and while not my best, it also wasn't my worst. I will take what I need to learn from it and move on. Will I ever "win" a run...maybe if it's against someone with one leg and a crutch. Maybe! But I will always finish with a smile and a high-five.
Oh, and my PB half time is 2:42, so there.
Run strong, run proud...just run!

Angie All The Way said...

You were one of the reasons I ever ran in the first place. We both came from similar starting points and weren't that far off in our weights (then not now!) and I always thought you were awesome for just being a "runner" and I'm being 100% honest when I say I never once even looked at your times. If I EVER do achieve a half marathon (which I WILL) and if anyone ever scoffs at my finish time, I reserve all rights to punch them square in the nose!

I heart you, my friend. xoxo

Kara said...

I know I'm probably more on the "skinny bitch fast runner" side, but it's not much better here. Yeah, I run faster than most, but it's not like I can't find hundreds of other blogs of faster women. Women who run twice my weekly mileage and then complain because they had seconds at dinner?

I think it boils down to I just don't like the tone in some blogs, but I don't let it influence how I feel about my own performance. I'm not racing anyone but myself.

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