Tomorrow morning marks the 1st day of my 18-week training program as I prepare to run the Marine Corps Marathon on October 28th.
But, John, you've already run the Marine Corps Marathon.
Yes, I have. It was my very first marathon and I ran a respectable 4:49. But I want to do better.
But John, you did run better. You ran the Pasadena Marathon last year and ran a 4:40.
Yes, I did. And I'm very proud of that. I trained very hard and was completely prepared on race day. And I want that again. Unfortunately, I am not at all ready. Thus, the 18-week training program.
The truth is, I'm very proud of my accomplishments since completing my first marathon. Since October 30th, 2011, I have run many 5k and 10k events, multiple relay races, sixteen half marathons and four full marathons. I have challenged myself and succeeded beyond my wildest dreams.
But... and you know there's a but... for the last six months, I've struggled. After running Ragnar Florida with my amazing From Fat To Finish Line teammates, my motivation has steadily declined. I've continued to take part in events, but my day-to-day efforts haven't been nearly what I need.
Maybe it was inevitable, this "now what do I do?" time in my life. I've worked hard and achieved much, but now I'm left wondering how to keep going. What challenge is left for me?
And that is how Operation Awesome came to be. I know myself enough to know that I do best when presented with a very specific, very detailed, and very difficult challenge. I have to feel like I am pushing myself to my limits for me to remain consistent, so that's what I'm doing.
Beginning tomorrow, I will follow my training program to the letter. I may do a little more or run a little farther than it asks, but I will not do less. I will also get my eating back under control by tracking my meals and all of my snacks. (You can follow me here on MyFitnessPal/SanDiegoJohn.)
It's a lot to ask of myself, I know, but it's totally worth it. And when I step up to that Start Line in the shadow of the Pentagon, I will feel confident that I am as ready as can be to take on the challenge of the Marine Corps Marathon.
Washington, DC, here I come!