Tomorrow morning I will be running alongside a crew of first time marathoners that I have been helping to train as a coach in a local Fleet Feet marathon training program. I AM SO EXCITED FOR THEM! It’s like the world’s longest graduation walk 🙂
In the last few weeks of training several bits of advice have come up in conversation…
1. Don’t forget to SMILE. Even when it hurts. Know that can accomplish great things.
2. Look UP! Take it all in. Absorb every sight, sound, and feeling. This is your FIRST MARATHON! Appreciate every moment.
3. When the going gets tough, suck it up buttercup.
4. Remember why you started. Remember how far you’ve come!
5. Visualize success. Don’t linger on negative thoughts. Trust in your training, your body WILL do what you tell it to. You are stronger than your self doubt!
Back when I was a trainee in this same program two years ago training for my first marathon, I was so incredibly thankful to have coaches to rely on; there’s just no way to describe the value of having someone to believe in you when you aren’t even sure that you believe in yourself yet. When the leader of the program asked me to participate as a coach this year, I was thrilled. I am a very social runner, and having a group every weekend to hit the road with was awesome, and most of all I was so grateful to be able to give back to the program that helped ME become a marathoner!
My personal race plan is to stick with the pace group I have spent pretty much the entire training program running with– my only goal is to be as helpful and encouraging to them as possible. Strangely enough, I am not nervous or anxious at all… Running for other people is WAY easier than running for yourself. I’ve had that realization many times but the effect of it never ceases to surprise me.
Rocket City 26.2, we’re coming for you!