I canâ€™t believe I did it !!!!
I just finished the Semi-marathon of Paris. I feel elated, over-the-moon!!! It is particularly amazing to feel like this because if I am totally honest, it wasnâ€™t really my goal to begin withâ€¦ It was actually my personal trainer who at some point along our training journey thought that this would be a â€˜good ideaâ€™ as part of my fitness plan. It wasnâ€™t as if I was opposed to this goal,but I have to admit I wasnâ€™t really â€˜convincedâ€™ either. I mean after all, for someone who doesnâ€™t consider themselves to be a runner, is it ever really a â€˜good ideaâ€™ to run anywhere, let alone some
So, what does this experience mean for me??? Well, as clichÃ© as a lot of this is going to sound, I have to say it anywayâ€¦ training for the semi-marathon or any fitness goal was as much a mental exercise as a fitness one â€“ it necessitated engaging my mind to set goals and manage challenges to achieve a physical fitness outcome. It was also about defining, reaching, stretching and redefining mental and physical limits which allowed me to stretch myself as a person and an athleteâ€“ I was forced to work through everything from sore knees, lower back pain, fatigue, cold weather, rainy weather, hilly runs with my trainer on days when I barely had enough energy to get out of bed, the horrible interval training where I am usually cursing everything and anything in site, all as part of sticking to a training plan. Incidentally, all those hilly runs in Buttes de Chaumont paid off when I encountered those two unanticipated hills on the course that felt like mountains and made my heart pump at turbo speed and my breathing resemble that of Darth Vader. The experience also reminded me about being alive and being in the moment: anyone running this event in that sea of coloured spandex only had to look in any direction to know that with a crowd of 30,700 runners you couldnâ€™t let your mind wander for long or you were going to be run into or over ! I was also reminded through the entire process that I needed the support and encouragement of my trainer and my family. And speaking of support, I took tremendous comfort and encouragement from the animation every few kilometres that seemed to reinvigorate and re-enliven me throughout the course.
In a nutshell, this experience was as much an exercise in confidence building as it was a fitness milestone that will go well beyond the semi-marathon. After all, how could I not feel stoked whenÂ at kilometre 20 I had a second wind and seemed to fly through the crowd like Usain Bolt only to finish my race in under two hours and feel like a sta r! On that note, I thank my fan club of family and friends, and of course my trainer who believed in me, and wish all runners and would-be runners the opportunity to fly!
Do you have any similar experiences? Please comment below.