Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Less Than .17 Percent of the U.S. Population!

“If I had eight hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend six sharpening my axe.” Abraham Lincoln

In just a few days – many of you will be completing your first half-marathon. Understandably, you may be nervous or anxious or doubting yourself. You may have a few aches and pains that in this taper week seem to have magnified themselves. You may have had a couple runs lately that have left you unsure if you really have what it takes to be a half-marathoner. Don’t doubt yourself – you are a half-marathoner. You became a half-marathoner the moment you stepped into Panera and started your training plan. If you didn’t think you could do it, you would never have had the courage to take that first step. Now is the time to take all those weeks of preparation: the hills, the intervals, the negative splits, the early morning long runs, the fickle weather, the hill, the hills, the hills, and yes, the friendships and small accomplishments along the way, and put them into action. A few months ago – many of you had never run more than 6 miles or so. But you stuck with it and now are ready to toe the line. Sure you’re nervous – you’re about to accomplish what few people can do – complete a 13.1 mile foot race. According to, only 536,000 runners completed a half-marathon in the US last year: with population approaching 300 million, that’s a pretty significant accomplishment!

Anxiety and tension are normal – however, find ways to relax in these next few days to allow yourself to gather strength for the big event.

The words of Abraham Lincoln ring true. Saturday – chop down that tree. You’ve spent the last nine weeks sharpening your body and your mind to do just that. Your training is finished – you are ready to go. Visualize every part of the race, from the starting line, to the hills, to the cemetery, to the parks, and ultimately to the finish line. Imagine yourself running down that last stretch of the road with the crowd cheering for you! There’s nothing quite like your first half-marathon finish line!

And when you cross that finish line – be proud of what you’ve accomplished. No one will be concerned with how fast or how slow you ran or walked the race - they’ll be in awe that you accomplished the distance! Tell everyone you know – they’ll get bored hearing about it long before you get bored talking about it – but do it anyway: you’ve earned the right. Have fun with it, enjoy the sites along the way – even if this isn’t your first half-marathon. Don’t give up – take what the day gives you: nothing more, and nothing less.

See you there HalfWits – the power of this group is simply amazing!

“Your own resolution to success is more important than any other one thing.”
Abraham Lincoln


Anonymous said...


mary r said...

Muddy Buddy Chicago August 5, 2007

barry said...

"Understandably, you may be nervous or anxious or doubting yourself."

Hey MaryThon, I can't sleep or keep food down. Is that what you mean by nervous or anxious?

Anonymous said...

This is my third half marathon, not counting the two halves of my full marathon, and I can't tell if I'm nervous or coming down with something. I have no appetite and I find my body wanting to cast out my breakfast. I don't think you ever get past the nervousness until the gun goes off.

Anonymous said...

Best of luck to all the Half Wits. You'll all do fine. Just relax and enjoy the trip. Due to an injury I can't participate but I'll be there at one of the intersections.

It'll be a great experience!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mike B.

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