Thursday, February 17, 2011

Just Deal

Last night I brought myself to tears for a really selfish and stupid reason. Not the good tears that happen when you are so enamored by life that your eyes well up with joy, the other ones that appear in moments of weakness and self doubt.

I woke super happy yesterday, still on a high about jet setting to NYC in 15 days. What made my morning was when I got in the car to head out to the gym and Alicia Keys "New York" song was playing, the perfect way to start my morning. I literally felt like I was floating on a cloud and wanted to skip and whistle down the streets of Chicago on my way to work. I often have down time at work and spend time reading up on my running news online, and yes I know this makes me a totally terrible person. So if you haven't heard by now, the Boston Athletic Association last night announced the new registration details for future Boston Marathons.

They established new qualifying standards that will go in effect for 2013 along with a new policy for registration that prioritizes registration to those who have the fastest qualifying times effective for 2012. Totally fair and reasonable, and the logic of their new system is something that I completely agree with (or at least that is what I am trying to convince myself of today).

But it broke my heart to read this news. I was stupid and didn't believe all the hype last fall about this years race selling out in one day, so I wasn't one of the super prepared persons that waited by their computer the moment registration opened to guarantee my spot. Long story short, I was shut out. Boo for me, but all the people who were smart enough to take care of business in a timely manor are lucky and blessed to have the experience.

I'm a planner and like to always plan 10 steps ahead in life just so that I can always feel prepared. Sometimes this works, and sometimes it doesn't and when it doesn't I often make myself crazy. So I made myself crazy for a few days after the shut out, and then I moved on. Making adjustments to my race plans for 2011 at first seemed overly frustrating and I didn't want to do it. But I did, and it looked like this girl would hopefully get her chance to revisit Boston in 2012.

My crazy spell last night came on because I felt panicked. The new registration bylaws are now prioritizing registration to those who have the best qualifying times first. Last falls Chicago Marathon will be my only valid marathon time when registration opens, and that was a terrible race for me where I barely met the qualifying standard. That means that I would be on the lower end of the prioritized registration and basically am not guaranteed a spot. BIG BUMMER.

I spent the last few days of 2010 getting all my goals and races planned for 2011 and 2012. There are great things that I want to achieve this year, and being shut of from Boston has allowed room for adjusted goals that will make for a better Boston experience. All of my training is centering around a sub 1:30 half and sub 3:10 full marathon this year. I started the year all squared away in my planning, and was excited to see Boston in 2012. But that all changed for me last night. With registration for BM 2012 not even opening for another 7 months, I already begun to stress. I spend time scouring the internet for a local marathon within that 7 month time span so that I could better my chances of my guaranteed entrance for 2012. At one point I even considered throwing all of my plans for this year out the window and trying to fit a marathon in my schedule that was 12 weeks away. Crazy, yes.

Anxiety, stress, worry, every feeling in the world begun to over take me. I cracked. It wasn't until speaking with my husband that I begun to consider that there could be other opportunities ahead for me. He is awesome when I am losing my mind and can say something simple that makes so much sense for the situation and bring me back to reality. His acknowledgement that sometimes Plan A doesn't work out and life continues on so we just have to suck it up and move on to Plan B was not what I wanted to hear, but it was what I needed to hear. I wanted to be coddled, but he knew that would provide a temporary bandaid to a situation that I could let get out of control.

I still spent the night restless, tossing and turning with feelings of uncertainty that things were going to work out as I had hoped. When I got up this morning I revisited my husbands words of wisdom and he is right, and I hate when he is right and I am wrong. Grrrr, it sucks being wrong.

I finally came to the logical decision to not changing my plans for this year. Four weeks into my half marathon plan why would I think that I could just jump into a full marathon in 12 weeks and be as prepared as I would like to be? Most likely it would not turn out well for me, and I would have another race like last fall that left me feeling like this...

gross right? This is the worst picture of me ever taken and basically sums up my Chicago Marathon 2010 experience. BLAH.

My solution was to rock out to Katy Perry's "Firework" for about an hour to boost my spirits. I love that song, and I think she wrote it for me. Like she says:

If you only knew what the future holds
After a hurricane comes a rainbow
Maybe the reason why all the doors are closed
So you can open one that leads you to the perfect road
There are so many amazing races in this world, and I want to experience as many of them as I possibly can. So cheers to the door that leads me down my perfect road.

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