Both Jim and Phil Wharton have phoned to check on me in the past two days. Each asked the only question worth answering: “How’s your training going, Bev?” (They are professional enough to suppress the urge to choke on the word “training,” although my lumbering down the road only loosely qualifies.) When anybody but a Wharton asks how it’s going, I feel compelled to respond with something confident and runner-like: “Awesome! All systems GO! New York! WHOOO HOOOOO!”
But with Jim and Phil, I feel safe in admitting that the eternal struggle of holding life together has been made more complicated by adding serious running into the mix … and as a consequence, training seems ragged and uneven right now. Phil was right when he wrote in his blog that time is the greatest difficulty in fitness.
For every big thing you add into your life, you have to let something go. Time is finite. You cannot create more. You can only reallocate the hours you have. The conundrum of training on this level is that very soon it will demand sacrifices I have not yet figured out how to make. Something will have to give, but what? And until I make some difficult choices, how will I keep it all together?
Tactfully, neither Jim nor Phil responded to my sniveling with something insane like, “Don’t worry if the training hasn’t come together, Bev. You probably won’t even get accepted into New York anyhow! Pppfffttt … your chances are zip. That lottery’s gonna look like the full U.S. Census with the entire population of Kenya thrown in for good measure. There are only, like, 46 open slots for the starting line. Do the math.”
Hey, I know all this. I’m not stooooopid. But hearing it out loud would send me right over the edge, running shoes and all.
Instead, the Whartons ignored the horrifyingly self-evident and continued the coach-runner strategizing that keeps a girl filled with hope and Gatorade, and on the road—all the way to New York on November 7th.
We’ll figure this out. I’m very clear that any adjustments in the Time-Space Continuum required by serious training will be rewarded beyond human imagination. I’m well acquainted with the riches that running brings. Besides, there are PLENTY of things I can sacrifice to free up more time. I’m just thinking out loud here … laundry comes to mind …
Hey, New York, get ready! Here I come! One more time! YA HEAR ME???