One Month ’til the Big Day

It’s exactly one month until I run the Catamount Half Marathon.  Hooooooly crap.

In some ways, I feel like I’m totally ready.  I can comfortably run 9+ miles and not die.  I’m not injured.  I still like running.  In other ways, I’m freaking out.  What if it’s blazing hot and humid the day of the race?  What if the course is all hills?  What if I finish last?

Obviously, there’s not much I can do at this point except keep up with my training and hope for the best.  But beginning the final countdown is also making me look ahead to what happens after.

I’ve been working toward this goal since March.  I’ve logged countless hours and miles, spent so much time in the gym.  I’ve written about it and talked about it and thought about it and not much else for months.  This is the biggest, most long-term fitness goal that I’ve ever actually stuck with.  So what do I do when it’s over?

I’m not sure that I’m up for marathon training just yet.  While the idea is incredibly appealing, the thought of actually running 26.2 miles, spending somewhere around 5 hours running, just doesn’t do it for me.  So then what?  More halves (halfs?)?  Do I go back and race a 10k, since I went straight from 5k to half marathon?  So many options!

I’m afraid that once I no longer have a concrete goal, I’ll lose all my motivation and stop running.  Don’t get me wrong, I really do enjoy running.  But I also enjoy sleeping in…Watching TV…Reading…Eating…And usually when it’s a choice between working out or not, I choose not.  But knowing that I signed up to run this half marathon has kept me going, even when I’d rather be sitting on my butt.

Any suggestions for staying motivated after a big race?

15 thoughts on “One Month ’til the Big Day

  1. Charlotte says:

    I have run 3 halves and with each one, after a couple of days…my desire to run grew stronger. With my last HM in April, I knew the next day that I would be training for the full. I signed up for RnR marathon in St Louis (Oct) the next day. Not everyone is the same of course. Good luck!

  2. prettylittlerunner says:

    I stay motivated by signing up for another race…. If I know I have another race coming up, it allows me to put the other race behind me and move forward to the next one… I find myself compulsively signing up for races because after I run one I feel like I NEED to run another… it’s like the adrenaline carries over ya know…

    • DarlinRae says:

      I’m hoping that’s how it works with me. There are definitely a couple I can do in the fall. There just aren’t that many races that happen around me. Guess I need to expand my area and maybe travel a bit. Oh, shucks 😉

  3. runsaltrun says:

    I had the EXACT same fear for after I finished my first half and ended up doing exactly what PLR does (and I still do)…SIGN UP FOR MORE STUFF! ALL THE RACES! Racing is so fun and it gives you a concrete goal to work toward. Even if you can’t find something in your area, they have virtual races! You can find those online, do them on your own time and most of them will give you a medal. 🙂

  4. SuzLyfe says:

    You finish it, and then you see how you feel–maybe you will love it, maybe you won’t. Maybe it will be everything and more, maybe you won’t care for that type of race setting. You just have see. I love half marathons for the distance, but it can be a lot of pressure to have that one single day for everything to come together. Ultimately, you either like and thrive off the pressure, or it just takes the fun out of it. But until you race it, you won’t know. Race, then decide. One step at a time, little lady.

  5. Courtney @ Don't Blink. Just Run. says:

    My suggestion would be pick another race? HAHA I really don’t know. I have my huge goal race #1 tomorrow, then my first ever half marathon in September, so basically all year long I have something I’m working towards (plus 3 Spartan Races sprinkled in, amongst other road races). Good luck!

  6. irishrunnerchick says:

    I agree with everyone else – sign up for more races. Another half if you loved it or maybe a 5K/10K. But what works for me is to make running fun again – try trail running, or running with friends, forget about times/pace and just run for fun.

  7. Rachel says:

    Usually after a race, I am immediately motivated to work for a better time. I’m primarily motivated by improvements. My long LONG term goal right now is to qualify for Boston, which implicates the shorter-term goals of 1) building mileage without getting injured; 2) finishing my first marathon; 3) increasing my fitness for subsequent races until I can finally run what I view as a fast time (quicker than 3:35). I think even without race goals, there is always something to train for–getting faster, feeling stronger, etc.

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