Quitting Before I Start

For those that are here for the reading and the books, this is a running post, so proceed with caution.

Once I say I'm going to do something, I do it. I put myself through UCLA in 4 years, managed to get three teaching credentials and a master's, enjoy teaching high school, run eleven half marathons, and make yoga a part of my life. I finish what I start, and I do what I say. I don't back down, I don't give up. I make myself be energetic when I don't want to be. I make shit happen.

Until now.

Today I ran the Surf City Half Marathon, the race I actually PRed at last year. The run was okay, not my best, not my worst. A little warm, but nice because I had a good friend and my cousin there. But then at mile five I realized that I was no longer having fun. Training runs are never fun, but the races have always been something that I've looked forward to, until today. Training for the marathon is completely ruining running for me. I've spent hours and hours running to be prepared on the big day, and still have so much to do. Last week I ran about thirty miles with a long run of 12; the w
eek before the same, with a long run of 14. My bad foot hurts constantly and I resent the fact that I have to commit so much time to running on the weekends. So, from miles five to thirteen I thought long and hard about where I'm at in terms of my running, and fitness, and where I'd like to be.

I love exercise and being active- I've consistently worked out in some form 3-6 times a week for ten years. Right now I'm squeezing in yoga once or twice a week and running a lot. Too much. My spin bike is getting absolutely no use and I miss interval training that involved walking hills and running. Cross training is of course important in marathon training, but one day tops. My mind, my body, and my spirit are sick of it, and the longest runs in the training cycle haven't even hit (sixteen next week, eighteen the week after). Why continue if it's making me so unhappy? Why add to the stress in my life with something that's not necessarily required? I don't really care what people think of me in regards to my mileage (since most people I know aren't runners anyway) and I know not doing the full is the right thing to do (luckily I haven't paid for it yet). I'm not pleased with my decision, but I know it's the right one.

From now on I still plan on running, but to cut back to twenty miles a week; one long run on Saturday or Sunday (7-10 miles, since I want to stay half marathon ready), one "decent" run (4-5 miles), and one speed workout (30 minutes with 400 repeats). I'll go to yoga twice a week, cycle once or twice, and walk hills on the treadmill once a week too. Just writing that makes me happy. I plan to cut back to two or three halves a year (I've done eleven in the last eighteen months) and I'll focus on improving my times at that distance. I'm excited to have a more well-rounded fitness regimen, and I'm sure my body will appreciate it in the long run.

So, I guess this makes me a quitter. It the whole scheme of life I can live with that; running a marathon wasn't going to be my claim to fame, anyway. I'd rather write a book or save a quadriplegic orphan from a burning building. So I guess those of you who bet against me, you win. Congratulations.

And I'm not pregnant, so for those of you thinking those crazy thoughts you can go ahead and stop.


  1. I can't say that I don't relate. That was totally how I felt this week. Full training really takes a lot of time and mental energy.

    I don't think you are a quitter! I think you are smart to listening to your body and going with what feels right for you instead of sticking it out even though your heart isn't in it.*

  2. You're not a quitter. You're just adjusting to what you want right now in life. You can't always love or enjoy the same thing. Running 20 miles a week versus 30 miles doesn't make you less of a runner. I admire your tenacity so much. I've been having issues for the past year or two with not wanting to exercise at all several days a week after having a good bout of wanting to exercise every day for years. We all go through different stages. This is just another page in your book. ;)

  3. Your running resume is awesome, Christine. The fact that you stay so active each day is amazing to me and I definitely look to you when I need some running motivation. Even if you don't do your marathon, you still have a lot of runs to be proud of. I hope your foot doesn't give you too much pain. If it does, I will let Leeza know so she can massage it during savasana. :)