At the beginning of 2013 when everyone was secretly relieved that the world didn't end in 2012 and everything seemed so shiny and fresh and full of potential, I decided that in 2013, I would run 1,000 miles.
Everything seems like a good idea in the hungover dawn of a brand new year.
I did some quick math, then took a couple aspirin, had a swig of some hair of the dog, then tried to do the math again. It turned out that I would need to average about 20 miles a week to make that happen.
Or rather, a lot of sweat. But whatever. These miles needed to be run, and I was just the gal to do it.
I know myself well enough to know that without very specific goals, I'm the least motivated lazy lop around. I had run almost 800 miles in 2012, so 1,000 seemed both a challenge and totally reasonable. It was a competition of sorts, and I do love me a good competition. Even when it's with myself.
The first few months were fine. I owned it. I ran. I was fast. I was motivated. 1,000 miles? Hell, I could do 2,000. Or 1,500 at least.
Around month four, running ennui began to set in, but I plodded along. After all, I knew that if I stopped I might never start again, and I had told myself that I could surely do this. By month six I dreaded it. By month seven I was really ready to quit and began fabricating potential excuses to try to get out of the the rest of my sentence. I mean goal. Whatever. I determined that the only way I could surely get the rest of the year off was by breaking my own leg, but I also knew that breaking my own leg might put a damper on my ability to stay out of the crazy house, and that ability is usually tenuous at best, so I plodded on.
And I plodded. And I plodded. And I plodded.
Last month I got a bit of a second wind. I think finally I was seeing that the end was in sight.
As I sit here and write this, I am about 70 miles from making my goal for the year, and there is nothing - NOTHING - that will keep me from it at this point, not even a self-inflicted broken leg. I'll drag it along behind me if I have to.
I think I though that running 1,000 miles would make me different somehow. I thought that I would feel different. Look different. At the absolute minimum, I thought it would make me a better runner.
It turns out, none of those things is true.
I think it may have taught me one really important lesson though.
Don't make New Year's resolutions to your stubborn self while hung over.
I surely won't run 1,000 miles again in 2014, but I plan to remember that lesson forever.