“Every morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most”.
Merriam-Webster defines resilience as an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change.
Happy to report there has not been any misfortune for me, but the change has been an adjustment to my training regimen. I am still putting in work but not able to get the same quality sessions I put in pre-COVID. This can be directly attributed to my work role in Fort Pierce but please do not think I am complaining.
We have made some major operational improvements and there is light at the end of the tunnel where we will soon normalize operations and I can get back to putting in more training miles.
The concept of resiliency reminds me of the old saying: try and then try again!
Decided to use shorter races as a bigger part of my training program to get me prepared for the rigors of the half marathon distance. I have the 2021 Rock N Roll Savannah half marathon in November and the 2021 Track Shack OUC half marathon in December. My overall goal is to run a half marathon under 2 hours and the Track Shack OUC half marathon is the ideal setup to make this happen. I need to put in additional training miles to build my endurance back to my 2019 levels.
My fastest half marathon was the 2019 Track Shack OUC half marathon with a time of 2:05:51 (two hours, five minutes, and 51 seconds). 2020 was set to be my fastest year ever but of course COVID-19 shut down racing and my training lagged—that’s on me! 😊
So, what’s my plan to correct my training and speed issues? Well, I check multiple running clubs to see what races are being offered locally and within driving distance to me in Fort Pierce.
I routinely scan the Fleet Feet Stuart and Orlando Track Shack events pages to determine which races are available to help with my training program. I just shared with my best friend I have a hard time training with race pace—it is a mental thing for me since I do not have competitors or anyone to pace with. I am sure I may be the only active running with this issue but targeting real races seems to get my competitive nature going. This may not be the ideal strategy, but I will try this out to get me closer to my half marathon goal.
Made my way back over to Orlando for the 2021 Track U Can Finish 5 Mile race to get some speed work in. I ran this same event when I lived in Oviedo, but this is the first time I tackled the race distance in 8 years.
This is an interesting event because it has multiple distances available for runners to try. The first event is the U Can Finish 2 Mile race and Track Shack has a distance dare. Runners can sign up to run the 2-mile race and then compete in the 5-mile race right after. The hook for distance dare runners is the opportunity to collect 3 medals: 2-mile, 5-mile, and distance dare medals. Runners love their bling and a lot of them took part in the distance dare. I did not—officially. 😊
Did something new on race day to ensure I got in extra training miles. I stay in the same hotel each time I visit the Orlando area and it is down the street from the UCF campus.
I decided to leave my vehicle parked at the hotel and ran the 2-mile distance to the UCF campus for the start of the 5-mile race. Figured this was a great way to warmup and stretch my legs before my race and ensured I would get in a long training session—it was just broken up into segments.
Toed the line for the 5-mile race completely warmed up and excited to run on the UCF campus again. The race village was setup directly in front of the Career Services building where I worked for 4-years prior to moving to Tallahassee and the FSU Career Center. Great being back on the old stomping grounds. 😊
My goal for the 5-mile race was simply to test my endurance and consistently run miles splits with a 9 on the front of them (9:05, 9:10, etc.). Mission accomplished.
The UCF campus is completely flat which helped a lot. Went out with the intent to run my race based on feel and then push myself when I could.
Mile-1 went by at an 8:44 per minute pace and I felt good with the effort. Mile-2 through 5 were: 9:15, 9:33, 9:57, 9:42 which got me to the finish line at 47:29. Targeted 45 flat but happy with my results considering I put in a 2-mile run before my race.
Collected my 5-mile medal and took some pictures to commemorate the race and my time back at UCF. Got some refreshments and stretched a bit before heading out. I tucked my race medal away and began my 2-mile journey back to my hotel—yes, I ran back for a total of 9 training miles for the day. Felt great every step of the day!
I will look for additional races to help me prepare for my next two half marathons. Still have some speed in these legs, just need to release it in my unique way.
FYI—I am still on pace to meet my 2021 goals of 1,000 training miles. Imagine my mileage if I could stay consistent with my training.
How do you display resilience in your daily activities? Thanks!
“Life does not get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient”.