Right Foot Forward & Chasing Standards
At the end of my 2013 season I vowed that I wouldn't get caught up in the game of chasing standard times again. This I thought would come easy, as I floated back into the idea of just having fun and running. The 2014 season didn't start with indoor like last last year, there was no pressure of trying to make it to a national meet and I was just trying to get healthy. For me it's hard to accept when I am not hitting goals that I hit the year prior, but this time around I was more frustrated with the fact that I was still dealing with a nagging foot injury.
Stress fracture? While that's what we thought it was back in early Fall. I was in a boot and didn't start running again until December. After x-rays and not finding anything, we took it as an okay and I started slowly getting back into the grove. When it came to get ready to board a plane to Washington for my 1st indoor meet, I had to cancel my flight. Then again cancel another flight at the start of February.
I was frustrated, emotionally ripped to pieces and just went to a podiatrist to get another look at my foot. My right foot has two bone spurs, my left has one. We went into overdrive to find ways to reduce pain and get through my workouts. I felt like I was back in college dealing with pains that just wouldn't go away. So we picked training up again, but I had already missed a ton of base and March races were around the corner. What better way to see where you are then to jump in a race. Stanford came and 2:08.08 didn't look good on paper but it sure did sound good to me after not getting any amount of real training in.
The rest of the season became race after race, and a ton of 2:07s. I was frustrated because my foot speed seemed to be there with the workouts I was doing, but I was lacking the fitness I needed to run "the standard". That's where I needed to pull back, say forget what the standard is, forget what others are running and just run. A week of a Sunday race, two hard workouts and picking up a race that same Saturday led to a 2:05.26. That's it, that's all I had, and honestly I should have just been happy.
USA's came and of course I didn't believe I would make it. With a 2:04.00 standard and a ton of women running faster that were already guaranteed in gave me no faith. After giving up, I still checked to see who had finally declared and by my name it said accepted. WHAT!! I didn't know what to do but try to gather myself up, pick up my mentally and emotionally broken body and get in my last couple of workouts. Nothing to lose, just go run, I thought to myself. That first day of prelims I was for once not nervous and it felt different. Words from my coach reassured me that things were in my control and I was fine. I stepped on the track ready to give it my all, run to the best of what I had and to execute to the best of what my fitness was that day. 2:05.51 posted on the screen, I knew I wasn't going to make the Semi-finals with that and I was okay with it. I made it to nationals and I was just blessed to have the opportunity to be back on the stage.
This summer what's in the plan? Train, be happy, and chase "my standards". You can only beat who you were the year prior and that's my main focus again. No more back thought of what others are doing, what others are running and what I need to do to get to them. I'm going back to the basics, training for a fall cross - country season and becoming prepared to rock a long consistent stretch of great training. I will be writing a lot more this summer to keep you updated. Next post will be a sneak peek into my "Project Get Strong".
Be blessed and enjoy your summer to the fullest. Make the best of you and don't worry about what others are doing. You are your biggest competitor.