As I near 10 years of running, I have been doing a lot of reflecting that hasn't made its way to pen and paper or a keyboard and computer screen. One of the big things on my mind lately is the definition of success and what it really means to me. When I look back at my running highs and lows, the greatest moments haven't been my PRs. The greatest moments have come when I've been challenged.
Sometime in the next year, I'll probably have a top 10 list of moments that have helped me define success -- things like finishing the 2010 Richmond Marathon and the 2012 Cleveland Half will likely be on that list.
Another may very well be this past weekend's Runner's World Half Marathon.
As I only briefly wrote about heading into the weekend, I fully planned on doing the Five and Dime -- the 5K and 10K on Saturday. I had given in to my story of not being in shape enough to run the half marathon because I knew I couldn't perform like I wanted.
Once I got to Bethlehem, though, I started thinking about it. Why shouldn't I run the half? Sure the Five and Dime was a big challenge, but why not just run 13.1 for one more "running just to run" race?
So I opted for a big trade -- sleeping in on Saturday (9:30!) and run on Sunday.
The half marathon was certainly no race for me -- except for that mile I ran hard to get away from a very annoying pace group -- as I finished in just under 2:05, my second slowest official half marathon ever and a far cry from my 1:40 half marathon PR.
For a long run though, it was what I needed for some motivation -- big-time hills, perfect weather and thousands of people at the event celebrating running. Finding motivation, to me, is a huge success.
I said in my previous post that this weekend could be the spot where I fell back in love with running. It could very well be possible that this race is the one that gets me focused on a 10 miler PR in December and then even bigger things in 2014.
Only time will have those answers for me, and I'm ready to get there.