Marathon training – Run like you Stole Something

Motivation is easy when working or volunteering at an event where others are accomplishing their long time goals. After working this past year’s 35th annual Kiawah Island  Golf Resort Marathon, I found this same motivation, and chose to start marathon-training – or rather half marathon – myself.

My first race I would love to run is the one located at my work place, and favorite island; the Kiawah Island Golf Resort Marathon! Having the responsibility of being a course manager for this race, I have come to terms with the fact that working and running the same event, is not a feasible option. Because of this I am choosing to run the St. Jude Country Music Half Marathon located in the country music capital, Nashville, TN.

I have trained for a half marathon previously, but never ended up following through and signing up for the race.  Therefore I thought going through the training process again and actually crossing the finish line would be a great goal to accomplish in 2013.  While training, running on Kiawah provides a surreal experience.   During the winter months the island is even more peaceful, so while on runs, I am the only one for miles. With Kiawah having over 30 miles of bike paths and 10 miles of packed sand beaches, finding a different route to run every day is simple. Also, the abundance of wildlife I experience on runs is mystical. Pelicans diving for fish, dolphin’s jumping through waves, bucks and fawns grazing on grass a couple feet away along with alligators and turtles sunbathing, the entertainment is endless. There is also the sense of smell which is used when passing the marshes or seasonal vegetation that is in bloom, something definitely unique to our island.  Add all of these factors to a blissful 50-60 degrees, with no humidity and let’s face it, there isn’t much more a runner could as for…. except one thing. Hills!

I should have known from the line in Lee Greenwood’s song, “…from the hills of Tennessee” what I was getting myself into when I signed up for this race. However, this didn’t become a reality until I drove the course myself and witnessed the hilly terrain I was going to tackle in what now seems like a short 3 months away.

Pushing myself to my physical limits, gives me the sense of accomplishment and motivation that is needed for me to reach goals in other areas of my life. I’m sure not everyone feels this way while running, but for me it’s what works. Currently, I am on track with my training, since running on Kiawah is so enjoyable. I just hope when I encounter downtown Broadway around mile 3 I choose to hydrate at a water station, and not a bar.