When you finally make a decision, everything else falls into place

My parents have a rock in their garden with the following quote carved into it, “To conquer fear, you need to make a decision.”

I’m not sure why this quote popped in to my head on Saturday, but it did. You see, on Saturday I made the decision to pull out of running the Two Oceans half marathon in April.

It’s been a very difficult and tough decision to make. Trust me, I’m heart-broken! But I’ve had time to think long and hard and decide what’s best for me. 

Two Oceans blogger, Dr Ross Tucker pointed out, Why is sometimes more powerful than how.” So I sat down and wrote out my goals and answered some tough questions I realised was long overdue. It turns out, this is what I know: I do not have a problem running 21.1kms. The distance does not put me off and I do not struggle with it either. It’s the pace where my biggest challenge lies. Due to the fact that I run so slowly, the extra stress of making a 3 hour cut-off hangs over my head causing me incredible stress making it a very unpleasant run.  

The stress comes down to the speed of my running. If I can correct this and run faster, I would not stress as much and enjoy the run more.

The training that I started with my coach in January aims to do just that – get me running faster.

Unfortunately, the training schedule I am following does not include Two Oceans or any other half marathons coming up. In fact, I have already pulled a quad muscle by running Johnson Crane too hard and trying to slip back into my training schedule a day later without resting.

In chatting to my coach, he reminded me that my goal for 2012 is speed, not Two Oceans and unfortunately this year, I can only choose one.

I’ve chosen speed.

My hope is that if I can work on running faster, and start making those cut-off times by a good half hour or so, I will in fact not stress as much and enjoy my runs. That is the end goal.

Two Oceans will be there next year. And the next…

Since having made the decision, I am at peace and have a clearer view of my running goals ahead of me. But I am sad. Very sad. Some of my running friends have tried their very best to convince me otherwise and to run the race “for fun.” But it’s not fun when I’m running my guts out and still see a man at the finish line holding a cut-off gun.

I guess the biggest lesson I’ve learnt is that I was too afraid to make the decision. But the decision has to be what’s right for me, for my body, not anyone else. I kept worrying about what everyone would think. Would they all see it as quitting? 

To be honest, I’m tired (mentally and physically) of scraping through and just making it. I don’t want to run at 8mins/km anymore. I want to achieve a half marathon time of 2h40. Or 2h30. Even 2h20! I want to run faster!

That’s my goal!

11 thoughts on “When you finally make a decision, everything else falls into place

  1. Pingback: Okay Two Oceans, clean slate, here I come! | Keeping up with the Walkers…

  2. Pingback: Saying hello…and goodbye to Two Oceans | Keeping up with the Walkers…

  3. Hey Bron. Must have been a tough decision. But as you say, you are eliminating lots of stress on the day. I think it’s awesome that you’re putting all your focus on one goal first. Next year the 2O can be top of your list!

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  4. Hi Bron,
    Not sure if you saw my most recent post about almost this exact same thing? For me, the issue is the distance, and that, due to work stress and other complications, I haven’t been able to train as much as I needed to. The stress of potentially not making it was making my running so un-fun… I decided to give it until March but the truth is, I’m probably going to pull out this year too. My running has always revolved around training for Oceans, and I need to learn how to run for fun first!
    I think that if you love running, the added pressure of a “race” is unnecessary. You’re a runner whether you run the Two Oceans Half in 2:20 or 3 hours.
    Hope you have an awesome year (plus many more) of running!
    PS. If you’re still going down to support your hubby and other assorteds, I’ll see you on the field at a reasonable hour for a boerie roll and to cheer the others in! 🙂
    Love Tania

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  5. I wish that your friends will let you be regarding the decision you have made. One should always do what is best for yourself and not to please others. So very well done for sticking to your decision.
    Good luck with your goals.

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  6. I’m smiling ear to ear, why?

    Am I rejoicing in your decision, no! I feel and understand how difficult it must be to make have made that decision.

    I am smiling because once again, you have shown how much character and insight you have.

    Your decision was the correct decision. It shows such forethought and maturity and will in the long run be a decision you may wish you had made earlier.

    Get back to Enjoying what you do and the rest will follow.

    Thank you again for an inspiring post.

    Art

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