Challenging yourself, an addendum of sorts

Yesterday I wrote about how I was making a difficult thing (running a half-marathon) more difficult (by putting myself in a situation where I would need to wake up around 5am a make a serious bicycle commute simply to arrive at the starting point). Not much of a post, but something on my mind at the moment and something to keep filling the pages as I continue to commit to trying to blog everyday for the year.

Today's challenge did not quite turn out as I'd hoped. I awoke at 5am after falling asleep a little after midnight and quickly surmised my body was in no condition to go do that run. I pondered this for about five minute, turned off the alarm, pulled the blankets over my face and proceeded to sleep, hard, for another seven hours. The heart wants what the heart wants (I recently told this to someone regarding a chicken sandwich. Neither here nor there but it still amuses me.) and sometimes it's good to let your body take what it wants as well. I awoke a shade before noon, infinitely more revitalized.

My body felt better but I was bummed about missing the half-marathon. So I did the only sensible thing: I proceeded to run about 17 miles instead, on my own, somewhere else.

With the exception of the last three or so and a few stops for water breaks (I have regular running routes in my life I've more or less planned around where I know I can find public water fountains, though today's was a partially new experience for me and the first 10 miles had no easily accessible water. That was a challenge today, particularly because it was quite warm.) I'm happy to say I ran the majority.

There was a moment after one water break along the Springwater corridor where I walked and pondered walking the rest of the way out.  A fellow runner passed me at that moment though and shouted "Come on man! Keep going! Push yourself!"

You know what? It totally worked. I picked it up with a pep in my step and proceeded to run the rest of the way out, at least until the hunger pangs got so strong and the an idle whiff of barbecue put me out for good. I've yet to figure out how to run without getting really, really hungry somewhere around the 13-14 mile mark. Hmm.

So here's to challenging yourself! Even if it comes in the form of making mistakes and picking up the pieces or taking the route of greater resistance, simply because.

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