Just keep running, Grace

by Grace Ko

The other weekend, Y and I ran our first half marathon!

When we had registered for it about 2 months ago, it seemed like the next natural thing to do, a progression of events after a 5K and a 10K. I signed up purely on the basis of thinking, "Hey, that would be cool to be able to say that I ran a half!" But as I began training, that quickly changed. How fickle this mind of mine is. I started to ask myself: "Self... Can you really do this? What have you gotten yourself into?" 

I was especially worried because the night before the race, my hamstrings and glutes were extremely unhappy. I feared injury and questioned whether I should just fold. But I was attached to coconut water (hydration) and my foam-roller (friend and foe to tight muscles) and tried to get myself to bed at a decent hour ("tried" being the operative word because I tossed and turned in bed with "before race jitters"). 

I still can't quite believe I finished a half marathon. It is no longer just "a check off my bucket list" but it may go down as one of those accomplishments I feel most proud of. 

I had a wonderful golf coach in high school. He has since passed away but I still miss him and think of him often and his words still ring in my head. One of the things he would always tell me was that golf teaches humility- When you approach the ball with a "I got this!" attitude, you shank it into the woods or hit it into the bunker. But when you empty your mind of any expectations, you are often pleasantly surprised. 

Similarly, running a half is analogous to life: 

  • Sometimes things go better than you expect, sometimes the going gets tough when you least expect it. 
  • Preparation and training are key. 
  • Perseverance: you have to just keep going, even if you have to slow down. 
  • It's easier when you have someone running beside you. 
Registered, bibs on and ready to go!

Registered, bibs on and ready to go!

@the start line

@the start line

Y wants to run a full marathon. I don't think I'm quite ready to make such a commitment. But now that the after-effects post-race have subsided, I will get back to running. Slowly. Baby steps.