I was supposed to run the Trenton Half Marathon today. Last night, to prepare, I printed out directions, dug out my arm warmers, laid out my race clothes, bagged up my post-race recovery gear, and went to bed at 9 p.m.
But here I am, in my office, having never left Collingswood today.
I signed up for that race as a way to force myself into a regular running routine. I hurt my foot, badly, in May, and took three months off from running. In those three months, I fell out of shape, gained weight, and lost about all the fitness and speed I’d gained in training for the New Jersey Marathon.
So training for a half on an easy schedule got me out the door four days a week. That’s why, when I realized last night that the pressure in my ears wasn’t just from my flight home from Chicago but a head cold, I knew I’d be okay with not running the race. I’d already reached my goal. I was running again. I wasn’t back in fighting weight or shape, but I could go out and run three miles without complications, and I had created a base level of fitness that I could use to push myself into training at the next level.
I’ve been thinking a lot about goals lately, in running and in work and in life. “Perfection” can’t be the goal of all three, nor can meeting an arbitrary goal of what someone else marks as success. I’m trying to figure out where to go. Maybe training for a while to be ready for the next opportunity is a good start.
(I know I haven’t blogged in a while. Chalk that up to being mixed up about my next direction)