Steve and I head to Amsterdam tomorrow, and I am excited to see what the Netherlands has to offer.
Well….enjoy the view from my hotel room for most of it as I rest up and prepare for the race a few days later 😉 I will save the exploring for afterwards.
On Sunday the 10th of July at 9:30am (GMT +2), I intend to leave my heart out on the European Championships half marathon course, and really see what I can do.
I have worked so hard this segment, committing myself in a way I have not done before.
Actually, with how I have approached this, I am actually kinda shocked I did not end up down the obsessed path again.
It could have been very easy for my life to spin out of balance and allow running to define who I am, but somehow, I managed to keep the rest of Tina healthy as well, and keep my mind in a good place.
We know I am fit, and we think I am ready for a breakthrough, but you can never truly know until you are out there racing, especially in a segment like this that did not allow for us to take a breath and reflect on where I was.
This half marathon buildup has been intense.
There have been no down weeks, no time trial style workouts, and most of the time I felt tired in a way I had not felt before.
I can imagine that was what overtraining feels like.
But thankfully, it was just a few week stretch, and by focusing on one day at a time, one hour at a time, sometimes even one minute at a time, I made it through.
Now I am into race week, and already feeling better after backing off the last week.
This is the difficult part.
A few weeks ago, I shared with you my taper crazies post that I wrote before the London Marathon, you know the thoughts you have about why you do this to yourself, why you want to put yourself under this stress emotionally…..to be followed by an all out physical stress on the body.
But as I did last time around, I remind myself of why I do want to do this, especially this one, this is the race I always dreamed of doing, and it is a full on championship to represent my country.
The waves of doubt pass, and I am back to being excited, especially as I am pretty much able to fly under the radar with this one.
No ones eyes are really on me, and that is just how I like it.
The only people who will be focused in on me this Sunday morning are my family, friends, and you guys (although some of you fit in all three of those categories).
That is the nice thing about this. I can just go about my business, and see what I can do, without the pressure I would have if I was going for a medal.
I know that is how I race best, and I know I will do myself proud.
I am a racer, and I will give it my all this Sunday, I can feel it.
I plan to go out there and just leave my heart out there. No running a certain pace, no expected time, just going out there and RACING to help my team finish as high as we can (we have a good chance of getting a medal!). Chasing down every single jersey I can see, to cross that line knowing I have given my all, and could not ask any more of myself.
After all the hours I have put into this segment, as well as all the combined hours I have put in to realize this dream, all that is left to do is trust in me, and see what I can do.
And I intend to make the most of this opportunity to compete in this race…..although I probably will not be smiling quite as big in my finishing photos this time around, no stopping to smell the roses as I come through the finish…..this time it will be about leaving it all out there 🙂
After the race, Steve and I will be in Amsterdam for a few more days, and I do look forward to exploring and being a tourist.
Of course I am also talking about their delicacies, and these are the ones I would like to try:
- Haring ‘Hollandse Nieuwe’ (raw herring)
- Stroopwafel (a waffle style cookie with sticky syrup between)
- Poffertjes (fluffy baby pancakes with icing sugar)
- Kaas (Cheeeeeeese)
- Hagelslag (wait for it……..a sandwich filled with…….SPRINKLES! how cool is that!? Where is the laughing crying emoji when you need it!!)
- Rookworst (smoked sausage)
Yes, I still have some pretty important races left in this segment; Beach2Beacon and Falmouth, but this was the big one, and just as I have talked before about indulging and living life, this is another one of those moments.
I do not want to look back on this trip and regret it, knowing that AFTER my race, I did not celebrate.
No matter what happens on the day, this does deserve a celebration. I have done everything I possibly could to be ready for this race, and I am proud of the way I committed myself.
That earns me a few days of whatever I want 🙂
That means for those two days post race, I will be trying out lots of goodies, and the clean eating will probably vacate the building for a few days.
Don’t worry, I am not talking about two of the biggest reasons Amsterdam is famous, I will NOT be making the most of those!!!
I just mean making the most of the time with my mum, dad, auntie Jenny, best friend Charlie, her boyfriend Trev, and of course my husband, who will all be there to watch me.
Steve and I return on Tuesday evening, and on Wednesday we will head out for our mini vacation to Nashville for a few days.
For that reason, I apologize for my lack of posts over the coming weeks, but I want to make the most of this time with my husband; unplugged, and cherishing.
I will still be working for Runners Connect during the time in Amsterdam, so I want to make sure the rest of the time is spent soaking it in.
I will probably have some kind of race update that week, as I will have the time on the flight back to the US to really think….if I have not already written it…..I usually feel the need to “get it out” in the evening after the race.
If you want to follow what I am up to, your best bet is to follow my Instagram, that is where I spend most of my time, and probably the only social media channel I will be updating.
If you have not yet heard my interview on Endurance Planet with Tawnee Prazak (the consultant I have been working with), here is the link. A few people have asked about it, and you will hear the ins and outs of the changes I have made….and I was even more honest than I have been on here, so I hope you enjoy 🙂
Well, my friends, have a wonderful few weeks. If inspiration hits, I will be sure to update you, but until then I hope you spend the time you would be reading my blog on something you love to do.
Be it with family, friends, or even just some time to yourself, do something that makes you smile.
We only have one life, now go live it 🙂
Recommendations for Amsterdam? Nashville?