As I was rounding mile seven of this run, the interviewee on the podcast I was listening to said "if you want something you’ve never had before you’re going to have to do something you’ve never done before in order to get it." That quote echoed in me like a bell and I laughed out loud.
Today I ran nine miles completely by myself. I haven't run nine miles since the half marathon I did in 2015. But I've run nine miles before, so I was reasonably confident in my ability to do that. What I haven't ever done before was run nine miles solo. And I was a little afraid of the prospect. What if I got injured? What if I somehow got over exhausted? What if I couldn't do it by myself?
Those thoughts have plagued me the entire time I've been training, and even before, when running a marathon was just a tiny sparkle of an idea in my mind. And initially I was convinced that there was no way I could run anywhere close to this distance on my own. But though I could never talk anyone else into training and attempting this along with me, I still really wanted to try.
Now I know that nine miles does not a marathon make. But I ran, on my own, nine well-paced, comfortable miles. I ate a hearty breakfast first. I also rollered beforehand so my knees and hamstrings would be activated and absorb impact more easily. I stopped at the water fountain I passed around the halfway mark and had a sip of water (because my running guru Lauren leads by example)... And when I finished, I felt the power of my success. I can run nine miles (1/3 of the total mileage I want to achieve) and feel good at the end. And I can do it alone.
And so I'm eager to rack up the miles! Let's do this!