I've always said that I would only run 1 marathon. And that I was going to make sure that I could run that marathon under 4:30 so I wasn't out there for 6 hours on my feet. Up until 3 weeks ago I was on track for that goal. I have my 1/2 time down to 2:04 and I was having a great training cycle for my marathon in January (Maui!). Then there was a stress fracture. In my foot. No running for 4-6 weeks. Right in the middle of my training plan. This all equaled no running my marathon (especially in 4:30 or less). If I'm lucky I will be cleared to run on December 13, a mere 6 weeks before the marathon. Not even enough time to put together a good 1/2 marathon.
So what can I do. I've been fighting with this for almost a month now. I've been trying to keep my spirits up while riding to eternity on the stationary bike in the gym. I've been pumping iron trying to work on my lack of muscle. I've been looking longingly at the treadmill and have been coveting the wonderful weather outside. During all these hours, I've been thinking about this goal...only under 4:30. Why? Why go to Hawaii to run a marathon that I'm going to be so focused that I won't want to stop and take a picture or slow down and admire the ocean. Who said I had to run this marathon? Maybe I've just been looking at this all wrong. Maybe this is just someone's way of telling me that I need to slow down and smell the hibiscus. I started thinking in those terms. I can walk as much as I want, as long as it doesn't hurt I could walk all day. So why don't I do like so many others and walk/run the marathon. Why don't I readjust my goal to "finish and enjoy Hawaii" and just experience the distance of the marathon instead of sulking and doing a lack luster job of running a 1/2 marathon.
And so, baring any bad news in December, my new goal for my first (and not only) marathon is to finish. To finish strong. To enjoy Maui. And I will be happy that I can walk/ run in a beautiful place while it is snowing back home, and be happier that my legs won't be near as sore the next day. How much I'll run and how fast is yet to be determined and probably won't be until the week before, but until then my new hope is just that I am healthy enough to be a participant.