22 miles: demolished

I was looking for redemption this morning.
Redemption from that disastrous 20-miler last week. 
Redemption from the mind games that I let control me while on that run. 
Redemption from the doubt that started to creep in…the “why the hell am I doing this??” kind of self-doubt. 

This morning I got that redemption…and then some. We literally demolished our 22 miler this morning. Killed it.

(once again, looks here are very deceiving, I was in so much pain — it took all of my strength to amble on over to Scott, sit in his lap and position the camera correctly. If you look really close, you can see the pain amid my furrowed brows lol)

Everything just felt right today. The air was the coolest it’s been in weeks…not a lick of humidity in the air whatsoever. It was dark to start…which I just love, it puts me in this zen-like state, so peaceful and calming. We were nicely fueled thanks to our usual pizza night shenanigans the night prior. But most of all — we were ready. Ready for redemption. Ready to prove to ourselves that we’re right where we need to be with just weeks to go before Chicago.

Two phrases whirred around in my head this morning and I truly believe it’s what helped me stay ‘in’ it without letting my thoughts control me in that mental mind game sort of way.

The first came from a friend, Meaghan, who I adore and totally admire (she’s training for an ULTRA, I mean really, that’s just amazing). She lives and breathes running — it’s what fuels her, it’s her passion, it’s her first love (aside from her daughter maybe, hehe). Her words:

“Let the run come to you.”

I took her words to heart. I internalized them. I held onto them for dear life today. I let the miles come as they may, I didn’t force them, I didn’t overthink them. I simply ran. Letting the run come to me instead of the other way around.

The second phrase that drove me onward today? They came from my sis who gave me the sweetest, most thoughtful, most perfectly-written card. (side note: a card out of the blue, or a hand-written note for that matter — totally lost art form if you ask me, it sends such a signal of thoughtfulness and love that you don’t get from a text message or an email…). The words from that card…scripture actually:

“I have great confidence in you.” – 2 Corinthians 7:4

Simple, beautiful words. Comforting. I literally chanted that phrase over and over in my head anytime my brain started to veer towards mental mind game territory. I also thought a lot about my sisters on this run…both of them. And how much I love them and admire them and don’t tell them nearly enough.

I’m keeping today’s post short today — as I still don’t think I’ve quite let the 22 miles sink in yet. That we did this…together, yet again. We powered through even when everything started to hurt and all I wanted to do was stop. Scott was my sherpa today — cheering me on, telling me to stay right by his hip and he’d carry me home, and it got me through those painful last few miles. I had to stop myself a few times from breaking down in tears the closer we got to home — I was just so in awe of us in those final moments, so proud, so amazed. In fact, I did cry as we hit the home stretch. Scott took off ahead of me and was waiting for me at the finish, cheering me on with that huge smile of his. And I just lost it. Just for a minute. Just a few tears and sobs escaped. It was my way of ‘letting the run come to me’ – through tears of joy, pride, and yes, utter exhaustion. 

We did this. Yet again. And we’ll do this *again* on October 7 in Chicago.
…and yes, there will be tears then too. You’ve been warned. 

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55 thoughts on “22 miles: demolished

  1. And cue tears. love your post sis, so much. and honestly, the card, I have had for about a week and just kept meaning to give it to you, didn’t even mean to time it as perfectly as I did. I am so glad though, it was literally perfect, the right message, wasn’t it? Love you and so so SO proud of you both. And again, cannot wait to cheer you on in Chicago. I am pretty sure I will shed some tears. Pride and joy and happiness for you. XO

    • It was meant to be…the timing of that card and this run, I firmly believe it. The words in that card, the sentiment behind it, your message to Scott and I in that card? Meant the world to me and I truly carried your words with me the entire 22 miles. I am so lucky to have sisters like you guys, truly. xoxo sis. I can’t WAIT to do you proud in Chicago in a few weeks!!!

    • I seriously LOVE it too…it was just how I hoped it would happen — the 22 miler. It gave me the confidence that we WILL get through all 26.2 on race day and that we CAN push through the pain, even with tears in our eyes by the end of it. Such a proud moment, truly.

  2. Jess such a great post, and can’t believe how great both of you look after the 22 miles!!! Most of the hard work is now behind you, congrats :-)

    I actually recently moved to Chicago from Boston and have been a long time reader, I can’t wait to cheer you and Scott on! As the date gets closer I will let you know what mile stop I am at…I am planning on making a sign :-)

    • Ha, I’m still standing by my word – looks ARE deceiving, I was in such pain when we took that pic!! (still am, haha)

      I didn’t know you were from Boston!! How cool that you’re now living in Chicago, I can’t wait to see you on the sidelines!! You’ll have to tell me what your sign will say so I can keep an eye on the sidelines ;-)

    • It was a HUGE test, HUGE. I woke up this morning ready to go for it with all that I had in me and I left nothing left by the end of mile 22. I am SO proud of myself, of Scott, of both of us — we passed the test and are READY for Chicago. xo!

    • Isn’t his face the cutest ever? I love him SO much!! Even more so after all he’s gone through with me these last few months as we stared down steeper and steeper mileage. He’s amazing. <3

    • Aww friend, thank you SO MUCH for believing in me, and in us, throughout this journey. It’s because of all of you, all your support and belief that has truly gotten us both through. I have no idea what I’d do without you guys, seriously! xo!

    • And I cried my eyes out reading YOUR post last night…seriously, just re-read it actually and it made me so teary and so damn thankful to have YOU in my life. I meant what I said — you are a beautiful running soul and I admire you SO MUCH glitterface. big big BIG HUGS!!

  3. Talk about a quick change of pace – that’s awesome. Farther than I ever hit in my marathon training – way to rock it.

    And you look ahmazin after all those miles, no way would I ever let someone photograph me!

  4. I absolutely loved this – love that you guys demolished your run and especially love the look on Scott’s face in that picture. As I said on Jo’s post, I woke up Tuesday, felt the cool air and thought, “They are going to have an awesome run.” I’m so proud of you guys. And I can’t believe that Chicago is just around the corner!!

    • Aw! I LOVE that you thought of us the second you felt the cool air on Tuesday morning. You are the greatest. I totally needed this run and am SO GLAD it came to me the way that it did, for both of us. Scott said he literally could’ve kept going on Tuesday after we hit 22 (me, notsomuch, haha). It was THAT good. Who knew we had it in us?!?!

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  6. This post gave me goose-bumps!
    I have so many words and thoughts for you, but will sum it up with this:
    YOU ARE READY!

    “Marathons are extraordinarily difficult, but if you’ve got the training under your belt, and if you can run smart, the races take care of themselves. When you have the enthusiasm and the passion, you end up figuring how to excel.”
    -Deena Kastor

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