Friday, October 12, 2012

I'm Not Mad. Just Crazy.

I just finished my pasta and packed my bag for tomorrow. It's another Friday night in the world of MeriG running. But what makes this special, is that it's the last of these such Fridays (at least for a time). After I conquer tomorrow's 20-22 mile run (TBD based on how much I DIE), I officially begin the "tapering" portion of marathon training. Tapering, as Wikipedia would note, is the practice of reducing exercise in the days leading up to a competition.

And we are -- my faithful followers -- counting now in terms of days rather than weeks.

I have been training, officially, this year, for 20 weeks. 20. Long. Tough. Weeks. Of awesomeness. And it all boils down to the next three. In 22 days I will be running the NYC Marathon. Like a boss.

I do have to say though, for the record, that I'm feeling a bit nervous about tomorrow. Last week's 17 was probably the most delightfully, joyfully, NOT OKAY run I've ever had. Nothing in particular was wrong. Nothing was in pain (other than EVERYTHING). I just felt off. Like I wasn't able to complete the run. Like every mile was pushing me to my limit.

Not cool.

But then I went out to brunch with some of the girls I've been running with through TFK. And we got cheesy grits. And that was cool.

These are not the actual cheesy grits. This is a representation of cheesy grits. A reenactment of cheesy grits a la Rescue 911 or I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant.

So you can understand my concern about running 3-5 more miles just 7 days later. With no promise of cheesy grits at the end.

But persevere we must, because there is a higher goal at hand here. And we must not lose sight of that:

But aside from training for The Walking Dead to descend upon us, there is an additional reason I have done this to myself the past 20 weeks of my life (not including the half marathons before that...and last year's debacle..) And that is the fact that this motto rings no truer to any other:

True. That.

...or is it?

Running provides an outlet for me unparalleled to any other I've ever had. With the exception of nail biting. But my Mom says that's not as productive a hobby.

I am a stressed out person as a whole. Very A-type. Very particular. Very easily made to be nervous or anxious. And that's really never going to change. But running gives me something to not only neutralize the angst and even feel better. It provides clear, healthy goals for me to achieve and clear, healthy structure to my life. Allegedly (non-runners may claim that it's actually proof I should be locked up).

I'm not making this up. Other people say so too. But that's neither here nor there.

What is up for debate is the Running Is Cheaper Than Therapy motto itself.

This article from Runner's World is about interesting legal cases. And evidently one of them says that Running is NOT Cheaper Than Therapy! To quote:

Not necessarily, said an Illinois appellate court judge in February's landmark "American Psychological Association v. Cafe Press" decision. This claim rests on a number of dubious assumptions, the judge ruled, including a given runner's mental health insurance coverage and/or co-pay; the number and location of races that runner may enter in a typical year; and that runner's penchant for buying shoes and jackets and GPS watches beyond what he or she really needs. As a result, retailers peddling shirts, hoodies, or stickers emblazoned with this quote are on very thin ice.

And he just may be right. When I think about the cost of this little hobby, it can be...a little humbling. New shoes every 300 miles or so. Gear for many different weather types. Socks. Gu. Muscle Milks and Gatorades. Entry fees for races. And so on and so forth.

So maybe with proper insurance I would have been better off with a therapist and pint of Ben & Jerry's. Probably more efficient timewise as well. 


Well, shoulda, woulda, coulda. I'm off to bed now to prepare for tomorrow's session. I think we're making real progress.

1 comment:

  1. " It provides clear, healthy goals for me to achieve and clear, healthy structure to my life."
    I love this - it's neat how you get to that point AND have the chance to work it all out.
    I must say, I am happy the pain-filled portions of my runs (15 + miles) are coming to an end, but I don't want the long, two hour weekend runs to stop. Yet. :)
    Also: cheesy grits? OMG...I'm still hungry...