Running Another Half Marathon in the Fall

My goal is simple – I want to be FIT! I also enjoy competing against myself when I run. I’m still plugging away striving to meet my fitness/running goals. If you’re an aging boomer like me, every step forward towards greater fitness can be a surprise and a marvel. Being a personal trainer and a runner keeps me focused on being stronger & better – despite the fact that aging is detrimental to my health. I know one thing for sure, I have increased my quality of life with each birthday both physically and mentally. Just knowing that I am the best I can be gives me a sense of wellbeing that I treasure.
I’m getting ready to run a half marathon in the Fall, so I’m working my way back into a more structured training program. I’m leaning towards the Cow Bell Half Marathon. I’m feeling a little scared because I failed to meet my time goal in my last half marathon this past spring and I don’t like to fail. The upside is that I see the failure as “feedback” which helps me determine what I’ll be doing different with my training and during the run this Fall. I’ll also continue to take advantage of the expertise and support I get from my personal trainer, my son and my daughter (running coach).
I work out twice a week with my personal trainer for an hour where we focus on functional training, strength, core (balance) and enhancing my running ability which I love because running has become a spiritual experience for me as well as a chance to compete against myself. My cardio of choice is my running which I do 4 times a week, doubling one running day with a personal training day so that I have 2 days off a week. These cardio/fitness runs will become the times that I do my training runs which will be a variety of tempo, VO2 max, distance and easy runs. Recovery, rest and flexibility have become as much a part of my fitness regime as any workout. As I tell my clients, I try to tune into my body which tells me how far I can go with my workout on any given day. Sometimes I go into a workout thinking I’ll be lucky if I last 10 minutes and “low and behold”, I’m moving through, whether it be with my personal trainer, on the treadmill or outside running. Other days my body says “modify” and that could mean a little less intensity, a little less time or any number of modifications that just bring me through the workout. This morning at 8:00 a.m. my body told me 5 miles running outdoors in this heat was enough. The important thing is that I “START”, no matter how much my mind and body tell me “no” I try to follow the cues that my body gives me and before I know it, my workout is done. It is hard, but “if it wasn’t hard everybody would do it, and it’s the hard that makes it great”. (A League of Their Own)
Although I’m not among the majority of personal trainers, being 57, I’m probably among a growing population of middle agers who want to avoid future physical and mental health issues that will drain my savings, steal my quality of life and perhaps even bankrupt our country. I contribute a lot of my drive and ability as a personal trainer to my clients and colleagues. They inspire me with their determination and drive to stay accountable and active even when they hit those plateaus where their heart and soul just isn’t in it. Most of them have figured out that it’s not in the perfection, but in the fact that they don’t quit that they find their own personal success. “This too shall pass” are some of the most valuable words of wisdom I can think to pass on to my clients when life just gets tough. Most of my clients know that it’s a waste of valuable energy to over think and explain all the reasons we are not the perfect specimen that our original goals dictated we should be. We know that if we are honest with ourselves and value ourselves enough to never give up on ourselves that success is ours!
At Emerge, I work primarily with young adults who are so smart and innovative in their field that it keeps me on my toes and compels me to educate myself on a daily basis. I’m grateful that the upside of being my age is knowing that I can learn so much from others young or old. I’ve done enough hard stuff in my life, so I try to spend very little time learning things the hard way when I have resources right in front of me that can provide the knowledge and expertise I need. Knowing this and exploiting this tends to come with age. I, like all the other trainers at Emerge, work with a diversified clientel. I think this is part of what creates the “magic” of Emerge, magic being a workout environment that is superior and innovative at every level whether were providing service to a professional/Olympian/highschool athlete, or someone like me who wants to lose/maintain my weight, while doing what I can to minimize loss of lean muscle mass, build strength, flexibility, and balance and yes, keep plugging away with my running. Fitness and being the best we can be, regardless of individual goals, is the underlying connection for all of us at Emerge.