Friday, November 11, 2011

How to run a half marathon

I'm running a half marathon on Saturday.

"Good luck" is usually the immediate response to this statement, and that confuses me. Obviously, I'm not competing for a prize. I'm pretty slow. In fact, when I ran last year's Soldier Half Marathon, organizers exhausted the supply of medals before I crossed the finish line. I got one later, thanks for asking.

So what does "good luck" mean?

I'll start Saturday's Soldier Half Marathon with plenty of luck under my belt. Hopefully pleasantries exchanged on 11-11-11 carry extra weight.

There's a chance these well wishes pertain simply to completing the race.

It'll be a challenge. The mental battle will likely outweigh any physical strains. I don't run with an iPod, so I'm usually treated to an erratic mental slideshow that spans the good, the bad and the ugly.

And between those thoughts, there's the realization that I've come a long way. Not too long ago, I feared sports. Or at least I thought I feared sports. I actually feared the certainty of knowing that if I dabbled in this pastime, I would never the best.

I haven't fully embraced that realization, but I'm getting there.

In the meantime, I continue to accept good luck.