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My Crazy Resolution: How I Did It

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Crazy resolutinon to run a half marathon

If you would’ve told me a year ago that I would be able to run 13.1 miles, I would’ve told you that you’re absolutely crazy.

The longest distance I had run as of September 2017 was 6.2 miles, and that nearly killed me (kidding, almost).

I was trying to make running a habit because it was good for me, but I had a hard time staying consistent. On top of that, my knees REALLY started to hurt every time I ran farther than 3 or 4 miles.

At the beginning of 2018, I set a goal. A crazy New Year’s Resolution, according to some. I wanted to run my first half marathon this year.

And on September 15, 2018, I did.

Here’s how:

I Started Building My Miles Early

In addition to my goal to run a half marathon, I added another goal: run an average of 10 miles per week. I was running anywhere between 3-15 miles per week, but I would have to be more consistent if I was going to run 13.1.

In January, I worked on consistently getting 10 miles per week. I actually signed up for a challenge to complete 2,018 miles in 2018, which I figured would keep me motivated to build up my weekly mileage.

Then I gradually pushed it up to 15 miles per week. I went to Air Force Officer Training School from April to June, so I didn’t have the time to get long runs in or the miles I had been building up.

After I graduated in June, I had a 12-week half marathon training plan ready to go. It was expanded to 14 weeks so it would end right on race day.

I Chose a Plan and Stuck With It

I chose a race, set the date, REGISTERED, and got to work.

I’m a huge fan of Hal Higdon’s programs and I’ve read several of his books. They are easy to understand, and I typically shift the plan by a day because I like to take my rest days on Sundays. I put it in an Excel Spreadsheet (because I’m a huge spreadsheet nerd!), and then I add an “actual” row below each “planned” row so I can track my total mileage and what I did versus what I was supposed to do.

I actually cleaned up that spreadsheet and decided to share it with you! 

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Sometimes I’m great at following the plan, and sometimes it’s just not realistic depending on what my schedule looks like.

Registering for the race is a key point. Once I’ve dropped $80 on a registration, I’m not about to back out. It forced me to commit to my training program. I knew that one way or another, I would have to trek 13.1 miles on September 15th. It also served as a motivation to listen to my body—I didn’t want to miss the starting line because of an injury.

So slow and steady, I plodded out those miles according to plan. I might not be very fast, but I knew I could steadily cover the distance.

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slow turtle runner

Focus on Positivity

I have a confession to make…I’m a super competitive person.

I have a hard time not trying to go crazy and shoot for some awesome time right off the bat. The reality is, I am a slow, SLOW runner and I know I need only compete with myself.

But still, I’m competitive with myself.

There were so many runs that I started to get frustrated because I felt slow. Especially the runs after I had done back to back the 2 days before.

Each time I got frustrated, I re-directed to the positive:

This is part of the process. My body will be tired because I am challenging it and asking it to do something it’s never done before.

I’m getting stronger every day, even if I don’t always feel like it.

I might be slow, but I can run a heckuva lot farther than a month ago!

After the first one was under my belt, I set new goals from there.

I thought I was a little bit crazy to set a goal to run a half marathon. By growing consistency, sticking with a plan, and focusing on positivity, I got to the starting line ready to run!

To read more on how race day went, click here.

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Do you have any crazy resolutions?

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Happy Running

Alexis

About Me: I’m Alexis, Founder of RunningMyBestLife! I am an avid recreational runner, half marathoner, wife, dog mom, busy professional, downhill skier in Northern Utah. My mission is to help new enthusiasts fall in love with the sport of running. I believe that running is a catalyst to taking control of your life and living your best life by design. Learn More –>