Our View From Here

Perspectives of Five Women

Commitment Issues

on May 6, 2011
2008 Seattle Marathon Runner

Image by bufferchuck via Flickr

I’m not a commitment phobe, really.  I usually can make choice and stick to my choice, whatever it is. But there are two events on the distant horizon that I am having a hard time committing to: a 10K race at the end of August and a Half Marathon at the end of November.

Let me explain: I’m what most would consider a beginning runner.  I was a sprinter in high school and mainly ran the 100 and 200M races. After that, I left most sports behind for a very long time. A couple of months ago, I decided to get back into a running program.  I found a Couch to 5K program that I liked, modified the first couple of weeks since I was a little beyond that, and have kept to it pretty well over the last 7 weeks.  I’m a little over four weeks out from my first 5K, the Puget Sound Race for the Cure. I’m looking forward to it and I think I’m ready since I basically ran a 5K tonight (I only walked for four of the minutes, and I’m not sure I needed to do that!)

This whole thing started when a couple of colleagues from school started a running club. I thought I’d join as a way to help motivate me and to get some social time in as well.  Little did I know that the end result was to run in the Seattle Marathon the Sunday after Thanksgiving.  Well, the marathon or the half marathon, depending on your personal level. There are even some people in our group who plan to walk the half marathon.  I know I’m not ready for the full marathon. I could train for the physical part of it, but I’m pretty sure I’m not ready for the mental part.

So, I get this email today from the Seattle Marathon people. I’d signed up on their email list so I could know what’s going on.  But, today’s message left me a little rattled. The early bird registration deadline for both the marathon and half marathon is May 31st. After that, the price will go up.  Now, I’m a sucker for a good deal, but I’m struggling with the idea of committing to something so far out. It’s non-refundable, so once my money is in, it’s gone. If I back out, I don’t get a dime back. Now, $65 isn’t a huge amount, but I still can’t bring myself to fill out that registration form.  I’m not sure I understand why, either.

The other race, the 10K associated with the Seattle Marathon and in part to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the World’s Fair that brought us the Space Needle,  is at the end of August.  I figured it would be a nice halfway point for my training and a way to judge how I’m doing for the half three months later. But I still can’t register for that one. There’s something holding me back.

Maybe it’s my lack of experience. I haven’t even run my first race yet – what if I hate it? What if I’m not good enough? I’m not used to these sorts of doubts. I guess that’s part of doing something new – I don’t know if I will do well or if I will enjoy it.  Maybe I just need a good kick in the butt to go on an sign up for at least one of the races.


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