Back On Track
Despite a less than desirable start to my track experiences, when I decided to train for a half marathon last year I decided to include some track sessions. I was living by a posh university athletics track and I would cruise past on my base runs, peering in at the pristine tartan, watching elite athletes train and marvelling at their speed.
After my encounter, I made up excuses to myself and others to avoid the track. “It’s always busy,” or “I’m not a track athlete,” or “why would I want to run in circles?” However, a few weeks ago, with an impending sprint session, I realized I didn’t feel the need for excuses anymore. Since I had started running again to prepare for an upcoming race, I wasn’t just ready to try the track again, I was eager to.
I had found a gravel ring at the local public high school and school was out for the summer. Maybe it was the safety of being alone. Maybe it was the less intimidating facility. Maybe it was the acknowledgement that I just needed to get over my fears and get my training done. In any case, I laced up and started running.
As I ran, I was almost waiting to get bored, to confirm that I actually did hate running in circles. I was waiting to confirm I was a road runner, not a tartan girl. I kept running. I kept waiting.
Eventually, I stopped waiting. Eventually, I was only running. I finished my sprints, started my warm down and I realized 10 kilometres had flown by. I had completely zoned out into my training and loved it. That one session didn’t rewrite my history of bad track experiences but it definitely changed the future. A small part of me will always be waiting but instead it holding me back, it’s keeping me on track.