One of the reasons I am training for the Philly Marathon, is to conquer my fears. To prove to myself that I can successfully train for and run a marathon, and then pick myself right back up and run another one with our spiraling into dissapointment.
Although it has only been one week since I completed my "running homework" and was forced to face my real fears about this distance, I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I feel like I run freer now that I have in weeks. Mostly because I have accepted this training as a journey, instead of a destination.
Training, for me, cannot be about just getting to race day. It's about every day I get to go out there and run. Every day that I have the strength and physical ability to challenge by body, to exercise it and make it stronger. Every run is an opportunity to observe nature, observe people, enjoy life.
Once I started realizing that these weeks and months are not a means to an end, and that I want so much more beyond this one race, I think my whole body just let go. All I can do is my best and then on race day just go with whatever happens. It won't be my last race. Far from it. And as long as I can set my sights on that, and enjoy every run along the way, I can be happy.