Prepping for the Chicago Spring Half Marathon

As my half marathon training comes to a close and I enter race weekend, I can’t help but reflect on the many ups and downs of the past couple of months. If you have ever trained for a race, you know that it doesn’t always go as planned. I ran far fewer miles than I had planned and cross-trained more than I anticipated.

One of my biggest struggles was letting go of my group fitness classes to actually run. As I’ve mentioned, I’m hooked on group fitness classes and although I still love running, the classes proved to be easier for me because I would go straight from work and didn’t have to think about it as much. However, the ultimate goal of this half marathon was to get back into a running routine in order to prep for marathon training. While I did not perfect it, I’m in a much better place than I was back in March, and for that I am thankful.

Going into the weekend I am focused on eating right – plenty of protein paired with bread or pasta to have enough energy to carry me the 13.1+ miles on Sunday. I am also focused on my water intake – if you’ve seen my planner, you know I count my water each day and since it has been so hot this past week, it’s extra important to stay hydrated (literally just stopped writing to take a sip since it’s been too long). Lastly, I am making sure to keep my legs rested yet loose – I am running an easy 3 miles today and tomorrow with a long stretch afterwards. If I start to notice my legs are getting too tired, I may cut back or walk instead.

You may remember I had made it a goal to run the race in 1:45. And while I still think this is realistic, I have reached a place where I just want to enjoy myself. I am one of those people that puts a lot of pressure on themselves so by removing the time goal from my aspirations, I can focus on the basics such as correct form, steady pacing, and loving what I am doing. Perfecting the basics today will enable me to accomplish some bigger goals I have in mind later. 

Thank you to everyone that followed me on this journey – my writing is obviously going to continue but this race will always have a special place in my heart because it was the first one I went through with all of you! Hopefully I will get the chance to see some of you tomorrow during packet pick-up or Sunday at the post-race party but if not, good luck and let’s keep this blog running!

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