Lover of all things fitness related?
In my last post I mentioned that over the past year my relationship with running has been a little tumultuous. This time last year, I was 12 weeks into training for the Thunder Road Marathon and found myself injured…again. I was sick of running injuries and sick of the heartache of training and not being able to meet my goals. I dropped down to the half marathon, PR’d and tossed aside my running shoes for the rest of the winter.
This was an extremely hard thing for me to do because I have always been so focused on running. Calling myself a runner was a huge part of my identity. It was hard to respond to questions about my running and what I was training for next with the answer of, “I don’t know. I’m taking a break from running.” Instead of pounding the pavement, I unrolled my yoga mat and got serious about my practice.
Most of you know this but I started going to yoga classes last fall in an effort to curtail the running injuries. Honestly, I was looking for an easy fix to what was a more complex problem and going to yoga once a week at the Y was definitely was not the magical solution to running injury-free.
I received a gift last Christmas for an unlimited month of yoga at Y2. It came at the perfect time. With the focus off of “run, run, run,” I was able to find a deep appreciation and love for yoga and how it made my body feel. Around the same time, I started teaching BodyPump at the Y a couple times a week. Months passed and I hardly thought of running – I did go for the occasional three-miler here when the desire struck but those were few and far between.
By the time spring rolled around, I felt ready to test the waters with running again. It was always a goal of mine to run a big city marathon so when Marine Corps Marathon registration opened in April, I signed up. The October 31 race seemed like forever away and I had plenty of time to prepare.
The months kept ticking by and I kept finding myself in the yoga studio on Saturday mornings instead of out on the road. I posted about needing to get started with base building for marathon training but I just didn’t really do it. Finally, I found myself 16 weeks out from the race and it was now or never. I posted my training plan and got to work.
I’m not going to lie. I didn’t love the first couple months of marathon training. It was the dead of summer, I was unmotivated and questioning if I’d just completely lost my “I’m a runner” status. But I plugged along. This blog is part of what kept me accountable to marathon training and sticking with it.
And then one day I realized that the old running me was back and stronger than ever. I felt confident telling people again, “I’m a runner. I’m training for the Marine Corps Marathon.” I enjoyed the last two months of training (minus the 2-week hamstring snafu) and couldn’t believe how excited I was about race day.
I LOVED running the Marine Corps Marathon and never doubted my decision to run it while I was out on the course (even when I slammed into the wall at mile 20! ;)). I thought that after the marathon I would really want to focus on yoga and teaching my classes but I’m already itching to get back out on the road.
Over the last year, I have really wavered on how to identify myself. For a while, I thought I might need to change the name of this blog to Peanut Butter Yogi because I was definitely talking more about yoga than anything else.
But today, without a doubt, I am 100% positively Peanut Butter Runner.
How do you identify yourself? And why? Or does it even matter to you?