It is barely a few days since I completed my first half-marathon. Unlike previous attempts, my legs are not as sore as I had expected, but I have trouble getting around. I have always had a lifelong ambition to be a professional athlete. Unfortunately, my career forced me elsewhere, and I only run to keep myself fit.
It’s now a little over three years since I decided to start building up my mileage. In the past, I used to focus on some 5Ks, and I would never have envisioned running further than a 10K. After all, I did not see the point in running long distances, but now that I’ve found out how to release pheromones naturally, longer workouts are now my best friend.
Pheromones have some sort of scent which is very attractive, and they are commonly released through sweat. So, my theory is, the more I run, the more I sweat, and therefore, my wife finds me so much more attractive and I feel great about myself. This then makes me workout more as I want that same attraction to continue. Before I know it, I’ll be able to complete a full marathon which will be a great achievement.
My Half-Marathon Journey
I remember writing my resolutions back in 2019; I intended to do 1,000 km that year primarily to help take care of my seemingly uncontrollable weight gain. My journey was bumpy; I suffered multiple injuries ranging from shin splints to calf strains that made it difficult to achieve my goals. I covered 800 Km in 2019, but I felt confident and fitter as the year progressed.
And just recently, I did my first marathon, marking the first of many in 2020. While I was unable to do a sub-two, I can say that I learned a lot. Here are some key takeaways from my first half-marathon in 2021.
Training Is Key
Running a half-marathon took some serious training. I know that some people do not need lots of practice to run. But as far as long-distance running goes, I highly recommend serious training. From my previous comments, I had been running for a whole year before I could finally bite the bullet and register for a half-marathon.
From now on, I intend to do several 10K training clinics before I can start thinking about the possibility of increasing my distances gradually.
Rest Days Are Essential
Looking back at my early days in 2019, I was tempted to go full throttle as often as possible, and this came with a fair share of repercussions. Although I felt fitter and healthier, I was always nursing some injuries. From consultations with my physiotherapists, I realized that most of these injuries were caused by specific overuse of my muscles.
From my engagements with my physio, I understood the importance of running after every other day, meaning that I had to rest before the next run. And this change has been instrumental in preventing injuries.
Race Crowds Are Awesome
Doing a 21K alone is good but doing it in front of a crowd is even better. I would go so far as to say that I did not see the importance of race crowds in the past. After all, I just wanted to better my times. But during one of my 10K races on a steep terrain, I felt disappointed. I remember that I was in crisis mode, seeing other runners overtake me. But as the crowds cheered, I was able to get myself together, and their cheers inspired me to push even harder and finish the race.
Enjoy Your Race
At times, I have to focus on how I run. I have come to embrace the value of making enjoyment a priority. In fact, in most of the races where I have registered my best time, I never felt the burden of bettering my time. During my first half-marathon, I enjoyed my first 10k, which could have been why I could cross the finish line, albeit with some struggles. Therefore, if you are always looking at your watch, you will undoubtedly miss the fun.