by Javon Adams
I ran my first marathon in 2017 in Tucson, AZ at the Revel Mount Lemmon. It was my first Revel Series race and I was attracted to it because it was all downhill. For those unfamiliar with Revel, they pride themselves on having fast courses with very little incline and a whole lot of decline. The marathon challenge was new to me and there were a lot of things that were foreign to me. Before I began training, my longest run was 13.1 miles. During the training I remember meeting up with the running group that I am a member of, Black Men Run. The running captain asked me if I had anything planned as far as races. I shared that I had signed up for the Revel Marathon. After he congratulated me for signing up he asked how the training was going.I gave him a brief summary of my schedule and when I was done he encouraged me to practice the downhills. He cautioned me about being aware of the different muscles that are used on declive versus an incline.
I must admit that I did not train nearly enough on declines and I felt it for over a week after I completed my 1st and only marathon at Revel Mount Lemmon. But I finished and that was the most important thing. As slow as I was (and still am), that was the height of my running powers. I have endured some ups and downs with monthly mileage logged and inconsistency in the number of running days in general. Instead of running the stress away I let the stress keep me on my couch.
The older you get it is harder to get off the recliner and hit the road or trails. It is even harder when your diet has taken a backseat as well. Drinking one smoothie does not equal a cleanse and 4 glasses of water does not make a well hydrated runner either. But the journey back starts with the doing as I wrote in a previous blog. I recently read a book by Darren Hardy called The Compound Effect. It focuses on the great change that can come by making little changes because at a certain point the decisions you make whether positive or negative begin to compound.
1% change can seem insignificant but staying the course it adds up. For the last month or so my mind has been fixated on a 100 mile run. Now, don’t get me wrong, I know that I am in NO shape to run a ½ marathon let alone a 100 miler. I do know that I can make up my mind to improve my diet (been making some Peanut Butter and Banana smoothies and cooking more at home) and dedicate myself to running more. Most importantly to be PRESENT for my runs. Far too often I my GPS will show that 2 miles completed but I did not give 70, 80 or 90% effort. If I am going to improve I have to be present and locked in.
So, I have my eyes set on that 100 miler. It may take a year or two or three but that is ok. My first goal is a 10k and I will go on from there. The journey of 100 mile starts with the first step so I guess I better get to steppin’