Marathon Training = Showing Up For Myself

I got up at early this morning, 7 a.m. to be exact, despite having gone to bed a mere four hours earlier. I ate a piece of toast with peanut butter, drank a large cup of Earl Grey tea, discovered that my iPod was not charged, threw on some clothes and shoes, did not comb my hair... and then left the house, headed for Santa Monica.

The clothing was a pair of workout pants and a shirt from my running club, the LA Leggers. The shoes were my running shoes, which have not, other than the 5K I did with my sister and a few jogs around the neighborhood, seen much activity over the past month.

Santa Monica was the destination because the Leggers train along the coast. If you've never experienced it, let me tell you, it's very relaxing to hear the sound of waves crashing against the shore while you're running. However, I didn't hear those waves for long this morning because we only ran a short distance. We went from the Santa Monica Senior Center, north to the Totem Pole, and then back again to where we'd begun. Total distance? Three miles.

There were a few other returning club members, but most of the folks were newbies, excited to run their first race, unsure if they could really do it. Scared to hear that our distance next Saturday is going to be four miles.

So why go back for another go at running the Los Angeles Marathon? There are things like wanting a better finishing time and liking getting a medal at the end, but I can only answer that having to take the time to run grounds me. It keeps me sane, and, um, I like running.

I feel terribly odd admitting that I like running, especially since I know so many people hate it, but it's true. I like it because it makes me feel better, and it is one of the few things I have going on in my life where I don't have to show up for anybody else but myself.

Training for marathons gives me an excuse to make myself a priority. The training runs are unskippable because if you don't train consistently, you can't really run a race without hurting yourself. No matter what else is going on in my life, sorry, I have to go run because, ahem, there's the Los Angeles Marathon on March 21, 2010 on my horizon.

If you live in LA, it's not too late to join the Leggers. I promise, everyone is really, really nice and will help you finish every single mile. Even if you have to walk it in, someone will be there to cheer you on! If you aren't here in LA, I'm sure there's a similar running club wherever you are. Even if you just want to run 5Ks or half-marathons, there is a running future for you. I'm sure of it.

So here's to more running, and more running, and the loads of even more running sure to come!


Come to Vegas and run the R&R with me! I'm not very fast - but we'd have fun. It's December 6th - You could even just drive up!

I'll have run a year by next year's LA marathon, so I would just be ready to start training for one. 2011?

You were my inspiration to start this adventure. It's only fitting.
Liz Dwyer said…
I would've loved to do the half for that but it turns out, it's the same date as the City of Angels half marathon -- and I HAVE to run that one. How come they have to pick the same dates? That isn't cool! Hmm...we'll see. I really want to do City of Angels, but I really want to meet you and cheer for you.

I'm glad to inspire somebody. Most folks just seem to think I'm a little nuts! ;)
Kia said…
I've always wanted to run the LA Marathon. Since I've never done it before I spent this weekend researching running clubs. Completing a marathon would be an awesome goal not to mention all the health benefits! Deep down I've always been jealous of how much stimina runners have!
Liz Dwyer said…
Did you find a club you like? It's going to be harder for me to keep up my training on Saturday mornings because I have major childcare issues but I'm going to do my best!
Lucrecer said…
Good for you! I happen to love running, too and recently started back doing so earlier this year. My goal is to run an entire 5K and go from there. It has been a long time since I was a consistent runner.
Jameil said…
tell me this. did you always love running?
1969 said…
Go Liz. You have to have something that you do totally for yourself...why not make it running and reap all of the health benefits?
romi said…
great post! I trained with the Leggers and ran the LA Marathon 6 years ago, just before I turned 40. I'm turning 46 next week and while I don't have another 26 miles in me - I'm training to do Malibu 1/2 marathon in November! It's's the best way to make yourself a priority!

Good luck!

Liz Dwyer said…
Yes, consistency really helps with running. I realize I never liked it before because I'd go from zero to trying to run three miles at once. Not a good idea! Good luck with your 5K!

Nope! I used to like to do every other form of exercise EXCEPT running. But when you're short on time, running starts to look better and better as a cardio option. I used to wonder what I would think about while running miles and miles, and now I have no problem at all keeping my mind occupied! Plus, it gives me a good excuse to listen to my music!

Exactly! If I can keep health problems away and have decent legs, I figure, why not! :)

Oh that is great that you're doing the Malibu half! Good for you. I really like running races ALOT, even if I don't like the entry costs! :)
Showing up for yourself says it all - what so many women can't manage to do with all our other responsibilities, even though it's so important.

Kudos to you for being a trend setter and role model, as always!
Kia said…
Los Angelista,

I'm thinking about joining the LA Roadrunners. I heard they are really good and training starts Sep. 1st.
Tami said…
Go, Liz! My first 5K isn't even until Sept. and I already have my eye on the Indy Mini in spring 2010. This running stuff is addictive!

Come marathon time, I'll be cheering for you from the Heartland!

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