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bird poops on plum branch


Buster Benson

No advice column.

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I'm #10766!
bird poops on plum branch
I'm running my first half-marathon tomorrow. It's true, I've been telling people that I ran one in high school, but I don't think I did. Maybe I did, or maybe I just worked at one. Impossible to know for sure. However, to tell the real truth, I'm a little terrified about the half-marathon tomorrow. They say it's going to snow. They say that you should usually train for such a thing. I feel like I should explain myself a little bit, if only for my own benefit.

Something Russell said the other day has stuck with me. He said, "The way you do anything is the way you do everything." It's true. You come out in the details. And then I started examining how I'm doing this half-marathon and was wondering what it said about how I do everything. Am I doing the marathon half-assed? Do I do everything half-assed? I don't think so, but then how DO I do everything?

Here are some details about my half-marathon:
  • I decided to do it two months ago, on a whim.
  • At first, I thought I was going to train for it. But, after a couple weeks, I decided that training wasn't necessary.
  • I have gone running 4 times since I decided to run the race... 3 miles, 5 miles, 8 miles, and 5 miles.
All along, I've had this idea in my head about why I'm running this. And not training for it became a big part of the reason. Not because I wanted to do it half-assed, and not because I want to belittle people who actually do take training for the marathon very seriously, but rather because I wanted to prove to myself that preparation isn't always necessary. Sometimes, you need to show yourself that you can do things even though you're not prepared. Like running a half-marathon. Like changing your name. Like starting a business. The thing is, I think we live in a culture of security and over-planning. We need reasons for everything, and it paralyzes us.

Being reasonable is generally considered a good thing. It means that if someone questions you, or you fail, you will be able to explain why that happened, and why that was or was not supposed to happen. It's a control thing. However, I strongly believe that reasons will stop you from doing all the most important and rewarding things available to us.

I am my own worst enemy. Reasons are really strong things that reach down really deep into our minds and it's really difficult to draw the line between your thoughts, your reasons, and your fears. I want to run the half-marathon as proof that I can do difficult things even when I'm not prepared. Imagine what new powers one might realize one had if you believed that you were good enough to do difficult things that you weren't even good at! If you can do difficult things that you're not good at, then imagine the big difficult things you could tackle when you were prepared and trained and ready.

Of course, it's supposed to snow tomorrow. It's going to be really cold and I don't think there's a 100% chance that I'll even run the race. But now because of this statement, I'm going to be pretty motivated to at least not find an easy way out. It goes back to having irreversible steps. You should set yourself up for failure, because it's only once you have become vulnerable to failure that you actually have a chance at success... or something. I'm serious! lol

How do you think I'll do?
Poll #875372 How will I do on the half-marathon?

Will I finish?


If I finish, what will my time be?

under 1:45 (under 8 min/mi) *yeah right*
1:45-1:57 (8-9 min/mi)
1:57-2:11 (9-10 min/mi)
2:11-2:24 (10-11 min/mi)
2:24-2:37 (11-12 min/mi)
2:37-2:50 (12-13 min/mi)
2:50-3:03 (13-14 min/mi)
over 3:03 (over 14 min/mi)

Will you sponsor me?

I'll pray for your cold black soul if you finish
I'll buy you a drink if you finish
I'll give you a hi-5 if you finish
I'll buy a McLeod membership if you finish
I'll add you to my secret friends filter if you finish
I'll try the Blue Scream(tm) if you finish

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i'll buy you a drink even if you don't finish! should i meet you at the finish line with a hot toddy? where do i wait? it might end up being a cold toddy.

i looked at the map for the first time today and realized that the half-marathon ends at seward park! what am i supposed to do over there? i won't require you to meet me over there unless you really want to (it's going to be really cold tomorrow)... i'll just hop in a taxi and have a drink back in our hood. maybe in a hoodie.

i'll meet you at the finish line around noon-ish...

and if i'm not there, check bars around the 5 mile mark.

bring nips! they'll last you until the last mile, at least. good luck!

I thought the half cuts off at seward park and returns to seattle center? i had the map posted on my office wall for a little while.

I'm pretty sure it loops back to the Seattle Center. The 13 mile mark might be at Seward Park for the full marathon.

I saw your first entry about this the other day -- and had been meaning to comment about it.

I thought it was funny to read your thoughts about going for the 13 without training, but it helped further some of my thoughts. I'd signed up since I felt like I was out of practice on progressing towards a physical goal. I also think that subconsciously, I knew that once I got going, I'd enjoy the whole process of training. For the last two days, I'd planned complete "rest" before the big day, and I have to say, I felt totally stir-crazy yesterday, not having that post-run endorphin high coming my way. It only seems to happen when I'm in a regular routine, when I'm in better shape.

Anyway, I wish you luck, and I believe if you show up, you'll do it. Having had a friend who didn't train (more than 5 miles at a go) and who sprained his ankle playing soccer four days before he ran the Vancouver half, I think you can do it if you've recently run 8 miles. You might be hurtin', consequences and all of not training, but it's doable nonetheless.

I'll give you a smooch if you finish.

The thing is, I think we live in a culture of security and over-planning. We need reasons for everything, and it paralyzes us.

I couldn't agree more. Every freakin' time I tell someone I want to have kids, they freak out and lecture me about what a big deal it is, and how I need to "prepare." I'm like "how hard can it be? billions of people have been doing it for millennia with no training." Just fucking have your kid, don't spend your life reading abou tit.

Anyway good luck to you.

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